Sunday, December 30, 2012

2012: A Year in Lessons and Thanks

Thanks to Nina Lesaout for this photo

I wasn’t going to write an end of the year looking back, looking ahead post on Museum Notes for 2012. In fact, I have been working on a post I have long wanted to write about putting children at the center of our work. As I wrote, read, and thought–and wrote, read, and thought some more–I was struck by how often I  learn from and am inspired by the thinking of generous colleagues, just-in-time insights, and the children and parents we serve. And so 2012: A Year in Lessons and Thanks bumps Children at the Center for the moment.

With my great thanks to…
  • The searchers, seekers, and surfers who have followed links to fresh ideas, new designs, and remarkable images hovering at the intersections of design and thinking; and have passed them on as kindling to spark imaginations. 
  • Those astute strategic planners who have let their commitment and critical eyes track implementation of their plans; and have directed their fine-tuning up-stream to support fuller, sustained, and committed follow-through on plans.
  •  The masterful museum planners who show how to look at and link everything with everything else and then follow the vibrating connections to new spaces, places, and platforms.
  • Those who share their delight in logic models, great appetite for questions, and who enthusiastically search for new, meaningful, and sometimes unusual measures of how museums matter. 
  •  The thinkers, linkers, writers, and friendly provocateurs, those past and still active, who agitate against complacency, challenge self-congratulation, open new perspectives, and spark new experiments with their books, blogs, articles, and questions.
  • The attentive and alert souls who demonstrate that listening is an active verb with a power to convert old certainties into new possibilities.  
  • Those who test easy assumptions with bold simple experiments.

  • All the parents who have shared their well-thought out agendas for their museum visits and their understanding of how their children will benefit from time in a rich environment, interacting with other children, and expanding their worlds.
  • The children, to Eli and Levi, Harper, Cyrus, Ian and Sara, and children whose names I have not yet learned, for the privilege of letting me glimpse what fascinates them, what they know and are figuring out, and all that they can do.

Best wishes for a grand 2013.


  1. What a great collection of links. I ended up getting lost for an hour or so.

    If only it were as convenient to drop in to various museums across the world!

    1. Thank you, Peter. What a lovely image this suggests–dropping into museums across the world.