Aam 05 Diormas Tunnicliffe
Many museums have removed their dioramas. The diorama discussed here is unusual because it is new. Removing dioramas is a retrograde step. Working with children in museums where dioramas are in situ I have noticed that they have a greater holding power than just animals and on many occasions the interactive exhibits provided. Furthermore, the children spontaneously look at the animals and their environment portrayed and identify. The animals and tell a story on occasions about what the diorama is representing. There is tremendous scope, for museum educators and teachers who bring school groups, to link observing at dioramas with literacy skills of story telling and story making. Furthermore, Dioramas can serve as ‘momentary’ escapes from complicated, everyday life. Observing them for a brief time can transport a person to another place, generally more peaceful and quiet and connected to natural rhythms, and activate their imagination. Dioramas are particularly important to those who don’t leave the urban environment in helping them construct understanding about different types of habitat and interactions between living things (personal communication E, Carmen 2005). The History of Wildlife dioramas certainly achieve the objectives with which it was constructed.Ash, D,(2004) How families use questions at dioramas: ideas for exhibit design. Curator 47 (1). 84-100.
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Tunnicliffe, S.D. ( 1995) Talking about animals: Studies of young children in zoos, a museum and a farm. Unpublished PhD thesis. King’s College, London.
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