Another day! Another milestone! Setting new bench marks in cultural heritage promotion in schools kept ringing into my ears as the outreach team set off to Karongi district, western province. Schools visited included; College St. Mary, IPRC western, and Ecole secondaire Bwishura.
Over the last few years, many schools have eliminated or cut back on museum trips partly because of tight budgets that make it hard to pay for a bus and admission fees and partly because of the growing emphasis on “seat time” to cover all the materials on state tests. However, new museology emerged: a practical theory in museums linked to community archeology that intended to move away seeing a museum as a building to something built for and pro-people.
At present, the age of silent museum is gone and the focus by going an extra mile to cover a wider public arena. To make up for this decline in school visits, Rwanda museums are taking their lessons to classrooms through “Museums in schools” to fully engage with students. This re-thinking of museum study has integrated students and local communities to become more curious in picking interest and desire to visit or be visited by museums.
Education being a basic necessity for development, if devoid of people’s culture, there would be less or no progress at all in that given society. It would simply be more or less empty and incomplete. What is more detrimental is having no idea of one’s own identity and heritage. But knowing who you are and where you come from is very critical and an important element to our young generations. It always indicates a future. Then, why take risks now. The educational processes in museums today enriches and exposes children to see, touch, and feel culture and history in a positive trend. Rwanda Museum’s outreach programs are designed to promote high early learning cultural impact and experiences for children to fully understand and appreciate the history, culture and take pride in the achievements of their colorful distant past.
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