What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Museum Box is a website that allows users to curate a collection of multimedia on any subject by virtually placing and organizing items in a "museum box." It can be used for anything from history projects to family albums, and while all kid-created boxes are posted online for anyone to view, each box is approved by a moderator before publication.
What kids can learn
Language & Reading
- forming arguments
- using supporting evidence
- cultural understanding
Thinking & Reasoning
- applying information
- collecting data
- producing new content
- combining knowledge
- perspective taking
- multiple forms of expression
- conveying messages effectively
Responsibility & Ethics
- honoring the community
- digital creation
- using and applying technology
Engagement, Approach, Support
The multitude of media options and detailed interface demand engagement and provide tons of potential for fun. A cleanly designed drag-and-drop system is easy to nagivate.
While putting together boxes, and the blocks within them, kids will simultaneously absorb info while learning how to organize it in a clear way. This creates a deeper understanding of the material.
Pop-ups offer technical help within the Creator tool, but most pertinent info lies in the Teachers' FAQ. All boxes are saved, evaluated for content, and then posted in the Museum Box archive.
What's it about?
Kids will begin creating a museum box by choosing a topic (family, the Civil War, 1950s toy robots, etc.), then gathering multimedia that can be virtually kept in the box. The website supports text, photos, audio, and video. Once you open the interface, you can make some decisions about your box. Each box contains a number of cubes (you can choose how many), and each side of a cube can hold a piece of media, which is uploaded, placed in \"My Drawer,\" then dragged-and-dropped into the appropriate spot. Organization and a bit of strategy comes into play here, but the layers of information that a box can hold are nearly infinite.
Is it any good?
MUSEUM BOX is really well-designed, and kids who like categorizing and cataloguing things will love to play around with it. There are so many options; for example, you could create a simple, single-cube box called "Chicken," featuring changes in the bird's development on each side, or a three-layered box with 24 cubes encompassing highlights of 1800s British Literature by region. The drag-and-drop interface is easy to use, and while it sometimes takes the finished boxes a little time to load, the end result is pretty cool.
Families can talk about...
Ask your kids: If you could make a real museum box containing the things most important to you, what would it hold? This could include sounds, special memories, objects, etc.
Visit a local museum and pay special attention to how things are displayed. Are there signs next to paintings with historical information? Why are some items under glass, but others are not?
Explore some of the museum boxes that have been created and shared by other people online. What new things did you learn?