Dimensions, July/August 2014—Telling Science Stories


July/August 2014

Storytelling may seem like less of a natural fit for science centers than for history or even art museums, but people have been using stories to make sense of the natural world for thousands of years. Storytelling is one of the oldest forms of teaching and learning. In today’s science centers and museums, storytelling can break down barriers to science learning, making complex science content more accessible, relatable, and relevant. Stories capture our attention, stick in our memory, inspire our curiosity, engage our intellect along with our emotions, and form a powerful connection between teller and listener.In this issue, we explore how science centers and museums are using storytelling—in exhibit labels, on stage, on the museum floor, on a variety of screens, and in programs and workshops—to reach museum staff, audiences, and scientists and inspire them to tell their own stories.

  • Stories Make Science Stick, by Tom Owen
  • STEPS: Where the Drama of Science Meets the Science of Drama, by Brad McLain
  • The Matchmakers: Exploring Science and Society Stories with Scientists, by Stephanie Long
  • Exploring the Science of Artifacts Through Storytelling, by Patrick Watt
  • Memories and Favorites: Integrating Visitor Voices into an Exhibition, by Eleanor Ross
  • Doing Science in a Story-Driven History Museum, by Melanie Hayes
  • Once Upon a Map: Telling Stories in the Digital Age, by Allie Sorlie
  • Hane’ (Story): Using Cross-Cultural Understanding to Facilitate Science Learning in Museums, By Nancy C. Maryboy, David Begay, Laura Peticolas, Jill Stein, and Ashley C. Teren
Online Departments:

From the CEO: Science museums evolve: Are we preparing?
Q&A with Ari Daniel: Telling science stories on the airwaves

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