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Field Trip Wake-Up Call

As the mother of a three month-old, I find that I usually arrive to work a little bleary-eyed. The good news is that after over a year’s hiatus, school and group tours are in full swing again here at the History Center. Nothing will wake you up like a group of 60 fourth-graders filing through the door, all atwitter about what they will see and do on their field trip. 

Kids ViolinLucky for me, the Indiana Experience is ready to meet that excited anticipation head-on. I’m proud of the level of hands-on activity our exhibits team has packed into experiences such as the You Are There spaces, Destination Indiana, and the History Lab. When kids can take a seat in a Model T in the You Are There 1924: Tool Guys and Tin Lizzies experience, try their hand at playing a violin in the You Are There 1914: The Violin Maker Upstairs experience, or become a conservator by doing a paper mending activity in the History Lab, the lessons of history are disguised as fun.

One of my favorite parts of my job is hearing students express excitement about history following a visit to the History Center. Recently, as I was leading a group to gather their things so that they could depart on their bus, a young boy complained, “But I don’t want to leave!”  I’m sure the excitement faded away as the day progressed, but I hope that the idea that the past is fascinating, and yes, sometimes fun, continues to grow in that young mind.


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