This Children's Creativity Museum, in partnership the Lawrence Hall of Science at University of California, Berkeley, and a cohort of museums from the NISE Network, updated, refreshed, and retooled existing digital infrastructure to meet the needs of informal educators offering at-home STEM educational programming during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. The project brought together over a dozen museums across the U.S to expand the Howtosmile digital library, which provides high-quality STEM activities to an active community of informal educators through best practices in digital resource management-with almost 3,500 cataloged resources. The project also updated the digital Library's legacy cataloging system to reduce complexity and increase security.
This new network of museums documented their shared practices with a new At-Home Activities Framework focused on learning at home. The framework is a list of recommended activity criteria, including accessible guides, low-cost materials, caregiver support, relevance, and creativity, informed by exemplars, established design principles, and educational research. Partner museums used the framework was used to revise their own content and curate a new collection on howtosmile that showcases the best hands-on STEAM activities for learners at home.
This project was made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services #CAGML-246996-OMLS-20.