Monday, March 28, 2011

Interactive Possibilities?

I visited the North Carolina History Center in New Bern, North Carolina this past weekend. This is a new building and exhibition space for Tryon Palace. I went to the Regional History Museum, which had great exhibitions showing the natural, historical, and cultural heritage of the region around New Bern.

I also went to the Pepsi Family Center where I time-traveled back to 1835 and got to make turpentine, kill rats on a ship, and help make ice cream! I may not have children, but watching how kids and adults alike interacted with the models and materials on display in the Center was fascinating.
My other half helping to navigate a ship. Each interactive model had multiple stations which could involve numerous children, but required each station to work together. 
1835 "kitchen" with interactive touch screen table 
One of the interactive models got me thinking. In the "kitchen"of the 1835 house the table in the center of the room was an interactive touch screen. You were instructed to choose items from around the room in order to gather the necessary materials to make ice cream. As these items were chosen, they appeared on the "table" in the basket on the screen.

After all of the materials were picked out, then the screen turned into an overhead view of watching how the ingredients were mixed together and the end product. I started thinking that this would be a fascinating way to show how pottery is made, by making an overhead view of each process, sped up slightly, with captions, and making it as if the person watching is in the position of the potter. Below I have included some photos I took while the video demonstrated how ice cream was made. I think this would be a great interactive model for showing pottery production!

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