May 23, 1936
The Education Office of the Brooklyn Museum opened on the 23rd of May an exhibition of the work done by members of two Children’s Classes. These classes have met throughout the year both after school and on Saturday mornings and there is a wide range represented from three through sixteen. The material on exhibition has been chosen because it shows very definitely the results of the children’s sincere study of Museum collections and their interpretations.
The subjects for the past year have been varied and in most cases chosen to meet the specific interests of given ages as for example, seven year olds the world over love Indians, therefore, our seven year olds have played at being Indians and have come to know a great deal about the home life, the arts, and industries of three different groups of North American Indians. The nine and ten year olds are just about ready to leave local situations, and travel to either remote parts of the world or times. Hence they have been studying Egypt during the era of the rebel king and have constructed models of homes and temples, and in addition have brought to life a courtly scene. Other groups studied colonial America of the XVIIth and XVIIIth Centuries and have produced hand-dipped candles, candle holders, furniture, clothing, etc., all of which was done with a true. understanding of the methods and materials used by our forbears. The youngest children have experimented with tools and have been discovering their own powers of manipulation, and the oldest of the groups has produced a puppet show, remotely based on the well known score of “The Mikado.” In preparation for this production they investigated all the available texts on Japan; Museum material was carefully studied and many preliminary sketches and designs of clothing, homes, scenes and activities were made. They departed from historical basis in the technique they employed in creating their scenery, for they became fascinated by the air-brush method of spraying color and as a result several scenes produced are a combination of historical detail and modern technique.
This exhibition marks the close of the year’s work, during the course of which some two hundred children eagerly and regularly attended these classes which were designed to enlarge and enrich the lives of our young citizens. The exhibition has been housed in the classrooms in which the work was done and may be seen through the 10th of June.
Brooklyn Museum Archives. Records of the Department of Public Information. Press releases, 1931 - 1936. 04-06_1936, 069. View Original