Title:Learning History
Authors:Nicole Vallières
Publication:MW2000: Museums and the Web 2000

The problems of access to and distribution of museum materials are at the heart of a number of initiatives undertaken by museum staff or agencies to draw on new technology to achieve a wider diffusion of museum and archival resources. For example, 13 Montreal history museums have joined together to provide teachers from greater Montreal and Quebec with an internet site containing information on educational activities designed for students at the primary, secondary and collegial levels. Within a broader context, CHIN's Gateway to Canadian learning Materials project is another initiative. The school-museum partnership is being renewed through the development of innovative technology-based initiatives to use museum objects and research directly in the classroom. Some ambitious projects, especially within the science museum world, have led the way. Technology might well prove a vehicle to bring museum resources into the classroom through the development of highly interactive multimedia databases linked directly to the curriculum.+ The McCord Museum of Canadian History, in partnership with the McGill Institute for the Study of Canada, the Faculty of Education and Department of History from both McGill University and Université du Québec à Montréal, and the Quebec Ministry of Education, is working to create new material history-based resources for Canadian teachers. This project will focus on the development of curriculum-linked teaching resources, drawn from the collections of the partner museum. At the same time, the partner organizations will examine the delivery of such resources to the classroom. The project thus has two major areas of interest. The first is the integration of the museum model of learning using objects and images into the more traditional text-based curriculum materials of the primary and secondary schools. The second is the evaluation of the Internet as a medium for the diffusion of multimedia databases with age-specific interfaces, and its efficacy as a support for teaching and learning. This paper will discuss the McCord Museum involvement in those 3 projects.