Are there ways museums can make challenging topics like climate change and climate resilience engaging — or even fun — for families? We set up our StoryKiosk program in the innovative Tech Kitchen prototyping space at Boston Children's Museum to try a playful approach with puppets. Our goal was to encourage conversation on climate resilience among visitors using social engagement to create a positive museum experience.
StoryKiosk records climate resilience puppet shows
A secondary goal was to test out a Museum Climate Resilience Stories concept, in which museum staff share their own inspirations on how museums can help encourage resilient approaches to climate change.
Visitors, both kids and grown ups, could make a spoon puppet or choose an existing puppet, then create quick conversational stories in response to questions like:
- Make a puppet show together: Walking in Nature
- Make a puppet show together: Get Ready for the Storm
And staff could record their inspiration on the topic:
- How can museum help with climate resilience? Any thoughts or examples?
Puppet making activity for climate resilience puppet shows
The results? I was amazed at how quickly families got into the puppet shows and talked about resilience. The second topic especially, "Get Ready for the Storm", lent itself to a lot of discussion between grown up and child — "what do we need to get ready for a storm?", etc. The interactions were playful, yet addressed a weighty topic — right where we wanted to be. Next time, we'd combine the interaction with some post-visit resources to create an engaging format that may lead to observable resilience actions.
Chipmunk puppets prepare for climate change
Exploring the ocean together
Museums as leaders of climate change conversations