The traditional role of museums is to collect objects and materials of cultural, religious and historical importance, preserve them, research into them and present them to the public for the purpose of education and enjoyment. Today, museums have served as agents of change and development. They mirror events in society and become instruments of progress by calling attention to actions and events that will encourage development in the society. They are part of the bigger communities that they serve and reach out to every group in the society. Education is critical for development. Education that is devoid of the cultures of the people in the society is empty and incomplete. It is only the museum that has the capacity and the ability to impart cultural education effectively as it houses the tools and materials for doing so in its collections. In SUIS, museums enrich the educational process by exposing students to history in a positive way. They assist our future generations to understand and appreciate their history and culture and take pride in the achievements of their ancestors.
Museums possess materials and information that can be used in enriching and improving the school curriculum in various disciplines. What the teachers have always been focused on is to work closely with museum experts on how the educational resources that are available in the museum can be integrated into the curriculum and the learning process at all levels. A properly articulated museum education program is an essential component in SUIS WY Middle School.
Middle School museum education is a specialized field devoted to developing and strengthening the education role of non-formal education spaces and institutions such as museums. Its main objective is to engage the students from Grade 6, 7 and 8 in learning experiences to enhance their curiosity and interest on their objects and collections.
Grade 6 – China Art Museum & Museum of Oriental Musical Instruments
Located in Pudong, China Art Museum, one of the largest art museums in Asia is a museum of modern Chinese art. The China Art Museum has a collection of about 14,000 artworks and frequently hosts special themed exhibitions.
Music and history lovers among the students will probably enjoy this quirky museum in Xunhui district stocked up with tens of historical instruments connected to Chinese culture. This museum’s four small display rooms contain musical instruments from here, there and everywhere. The displays are unimaginatively presented and the museum is strangely quiet for a music museum, but it’s still worth a visit to see the wide-ranging exhibits.
Grade 7 – Shanghai Urban Planning Exhibition Center
The Shanghai Urban Planning Exhibition Center is located on the People’s Square, which displays Shanghai’s urban planning and development. The focus of the exhibit is a large scale model of the entirety of urban Shanghai, showing existing buildings and approved future buildings.
Grade 8 – ITTF (International Table Tennis Federation) Museum
Lying near the World Expo Museum in Huangpu district, the table tennis museum has two main areas: the ITTF Museum relocated from Switzerland, and China’s first-ever table tennis museum. A bright exhibition hall, various ping-pong balls and rackets from different eras, fancy virtual reality (VR) ping-pong playing systems… The recently constructed International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) Museum & China Table Tennis Museum provide enthusiasts with a new destination to experience the charm of table tennis, the most popular ball game in China. It currently has 12,000 exhibits from home and abroad. The museum is China’s first professional international level sports museum which serves not only as an exhibition venue but also a world-class research base for ping-pong techniques, and a place for youth to practice.
As we entered the new millennium, we can no longer continue to ignore the role our children can and should play in our society as they too are part of our collective humanity. Unique educational and cultural programs should be developed for them and they should be allowed to be involved in discussing programs that are made for them, as they do have ideas that will enhance such programs if given a chance to contribute and speak out. We will continue to develop programs that are innovative, student-oriented, community-minded, curriculum-oriented and professionally solid with well-trained faculty, for our students are to play a major role in the development of not only SUIS but the world as well in the 21st century.
Multiple studies show the students who participate in museum visits become better learners and more flexible thinkers — skills that are crucial for success in the changing world. One afternoon has helped demonstrate the positive impact of museum visits and art education on the development of students’ literacy, critical thinking and problem-solving abilities.