Social Distance = Distance Learning

In the time of social distancing, we need distance learning more than ever. Museums around the country are turning to this medium as a way to sustain their relationships with existing audiences and open their digital doors to new ones. In this moderated panel discussion, the panelists will share how their museums have responded to the novel coronavirus through distance learning, such as virtual field trips, online courses, and mixed reality programs. Each museum has varying levels of experience with distance learning but the global pandemic has caused them to either kickstart, expand, or reexamine the programming they offer in order to meaningfully engage audiences while the physical buildings remain closed. This session will share those stories and explore questions such as: how does distance learning uniquely explores the tension between transformation and longevity? how can museums transform successful onsite programs into online learning and how do you maximize digital spaces for learning? How do you get institutional buy-in to rapidly shift the focus of staff and resources to new types of programming? How can museums see this as an opportunity to sustain existing relationships with their audiences and invite new visitors in? This session will investigate the MCN theme of Sustainability by exploring what distance learning technologies and practices look like in the face of disruption as a result of COVID-19 and how this transformation impacts the long-term goals of their department and/or institution. It will address themes from Strand 1 by sharing how museums have created new strategies via distance learning to engage audiences as a result of COVID-19 closures. The panelists in this session represent three types and sizes of museums, from three geographic areas, and three levels of experience with distance learning. This mixture of experience will provide a rich discussion around transformation and sustainability in engaging audiences through distance learning. They include: - A regional history museum that has never utilized distance learning but is switching gears to overhaul their programs; - A national history museum that has existing K-12 virtual field trips, and higher ed and lifelong learning online programming, but exploring online offerings for teacher professional development; - A statewide art museum that has experiences in different forms of distance learning for various audiences and expanding into mixed reality. The moderator is a museum consultant with expertise in distance learning and podcasting, so can mediate a lively interactive discussion between panelists and virtual attendees. During the session, the moderator would facilitate Q&A in the chat throughout the session; attendees and panelists could use the chat to provide resources to each other in real time; use polling to stimulate discussion or focus the conversation in ways that are most relevant to the attendees; and play a game with panelists and attendees at the end of the session!


Unknown Speaker 00:00
Hi everybody, welcome to show social distance equals distance learning. I'm Doug Allen, a board member with MC n. I'm here to welcome all of you and introduce this session. MC n is a nonprofit volunteer run professional organization committed to growing the digital capacity of museum professionals. MC n has developed deep active community engaged in year round conversations, webinars, and resource sharing. As an MC n member, you can join special interest groups participate in our mentorship program, and shape MC ns future in leadership roles like seeing chairs, conference chairs, and with time and the ncn board. If you're not already a member, we hope you'll join us learn more at mc I'd like to thank Microsoft, the registration Assistance Fund sponsor, Xel, our Ignite sponsor and all the other sponsors listed in the program schedule for helping make this conference possible. Today's session is a presentation panel. We're going to be using a chat box for questions. Please just post your name in the chat box and you'll be called on to ask the question. If you'd prefer not to say it out loud, just go ahead and type your question in the chat box and we'll get to it. At this point, I'm going to kick it over to your presenters Emily, Chrissy, Christine and Camille. Emily, please introduce yourself and the team today.

Unknown Speaker 01:28
Good afternoon, everybody. Good evening, wherever you're joining us from were so happy that you are tuning in to our session. Before we really begin, I want to just Welcome everyone into this virtual space by taking a collective breath. And so just to take one Inhale in, and exhale out. Now at least I feel ready to begin. We are still living in a socially distant world, obviously. And that has really impacted the development of distance learning programs for museums and libraries around the country and around the world. I am really excited to be moderating this panel today because it is showcasing three different types of museums that have three different levels of experience with distance learning. And so I hope that as you listen in and ask your questions, that you find relevant information and ideas and insights wherever you are in your own distance learning journey. So if we could go to the next slide. We're going to go over our plan for today. There we are practicing for this session. For distance learning, or in, I should say in the spirit of distance learning, we will also invite other types of audience participation today in addition to the q&a chat, so we hope that you'll join us along the way. We will go over specific panel introductions in a minute. And then the three main themes for our session cover adjustments and adaptations, strategies of engagement and the nuts and bolts of distance learning. So without further ado, we're gonna go into panel introduction starting with Christine.

Unknown Speaker 03:08
Hi, hello. I am Christine Campeau. I am the school programs manager with the Adirondack experience the museum on Blue Mountain Lake in remote upstate New York, and we are also known as the ADK x. I am pretty much a neophyte when it comes to distance learning. In planning for this session. discussions about where we're all at I kind of compared where I was to to Kansas on a string. My museum is in the heart of the Adirondack Park, which is a 6 million acre wilderness made up of public and private lands. The museum has 22 indoor and outdoor exhibits on 35 acres. It is very beautiful,

Unknown Speaker 04:02
and very isolated.

Unknown Speaker 04:05
We basically have two internet providers and they're both a little they can be a little unstable. So but three years ago, we did open a state of the art 90,000 square foot exhibit with many digital elements, including this virtual log jam that you see in one of these photographs here as a family working together to break up a log jam and there's a xbox system on the on the ceiling that's protecting logs coming down river. So far, so good things have been working pretty well except when the power goes out and then we have to finagle and get some things back up online. But we're doing okay with them in regards to School programs, so we have been very very focused on in person printing. In stations, we drive up to 100 miles roundtrip in a day to bring the museum into schools and into classrooms. We have discussed distance learning in the past, it does come up from time to time, but then it gets pushed back to that backburner. We have not had the capacity to give it the full attention it deserves. And our in person presentations have been very successful. We've been increasing schools and increasing audiences every single year. And that came to a screeching halt in March. And we learned a harsh lesson of putting all your eggs in one basket. But we have very quickly changed focus in the last few months. We applied for an IMLS cares grant for the 80 k x Digital Learning Lab. And although our proposal was not successful, we are going forward with the project. Our board and our administration are very supportive and willing to throw a lot of money at this at this project. We are getting a fully integrated system from Cisco. We're doing a full on program evaluation with the Smithsonian organization and audience research team. We have pilot schools on board to test and participate in the evaluation. We're using education consultants to assist with reformatting our live programming for virtual programming. We're taking content and activities from our live programming and in transitioning and redesigning them for virtual delivery. And we are developing new programs focused on current and and relevant topics. today. We are focused on social and emotional learning, and D AI. We hope to go live with our at k x Digital Learning Lab in January. Please Wish me luck.

Unknown Speaker 07:20
All right. Well, thanks, Christine so much. I'm also Christine too. So I'm going to go by Christie and this just to make it less complicated. But hey, everyone, I'm Christy from the National World War Two Museum in New Orleans, Louisiana. I thought to get this chat going. I'm going to ask you guys a historical question. I know you probably didn't come in here, thinking you're going to be asked about history today. But this is a question we get asked a lot at the National World War Two museum is why is the National World War Two Museum in New Orleans. I'm going to ask you guys that question. And see if anybody wants to put in the chat any of your best guesses. While that's populating? I'll talk a little bit about our distance learning program. And so I've been at the museum since 2011. And but the museum has been doing distance learning since 2006, shortly after Hurricane Katrina, um, you know, we realized that tourism was really slowing down here. In New Orleans, people weren't coming here the city's rebuilding? I know all of you are aware of that. Oh, yes. I like some of these questions. The answers are coming in the chat. Um, but we, we knew we needed to reach our audience in a different way. And so we really started full force with K 12, distance learning programs. And we still do lots and lots of those, although, of course, our distance learning is expanded to kind of adult learners, lifelong learning, and higher ed. Um, I won't get into too too much. But I did want to share, this is our last what you see on the screen is our last program we did before what big, big program we did before COVID. And it's one of my favorite things that we get to produce here at the museum. Annually, we do an electronic field trip for students. And these are, as I said, our largest kind of K through 12 initiative, where they're almost like interactive documentaries on specific topics and World War Two. And so we actually got to film for this one this past year, to really cool Manhattan Project sites, including Los Alamos, some of you may recognize that guard. It's a replica guard gate now. And the Hanford be reactor site, which is the first industrial scale nuclear reactor. So here's a picture of me with our host and our expert at our live show. Again, yes, because this is February of 2020. And so we were still doing these types of programs. We're still moving forward with our electronic field trip this year. They're just going to look different. And so I'm happy to talk a little bit about that as we get into the rest of the program. I'm going to look at the chat right now and see some people are like, I don't know why that museums there. I'm not sure but I've got a few people that have got it right. Yes, the landing craft for D day. Famous Higgins Boat, which again, think of Saving Private Ryan and when they're landing on the beaches in Normandy, and there's a little boat with the ramp that lowers down the majority of those boats. Yes, we're built here in New Orleans. They're called lcvp. landing craft for vehicle personnel or Yes, exactly. Higgins boats for shorts for short. Excuse me. So we actually opened as the National D day Museum in 2000, when were designated as the National World War Two Museum in 2004. So good on here being ready to answer some history questions. I'm going to turn it over to Camille now.

Unknown Speaker 10:42
Thanks, Chrissy. Hi, everyone. I'm Camille Toole, and I am the manager of digital learning at the North Carolina Museum of Art, which is in Raleigh, if you've been to the ncma, and I hope you'll tell me in the chat, just curious to know how many of you have been to our site before. And as I was preparing for this portion of our program, I had to kind of look back and develop the narrative that is our narrative of Distance Learning and Digital Learning at the museum. And it really starts about 16 years ago, with the inception of our first teacher resource website, it was called Art NC. And it contained high res images for teachers to use, and also art integrated lesson plans that teachers had written and vetted. So I like to start with our teacher resource website, because it's our earliest sort of extension into the distance or digital world, but also, it's still with us, it just looks a bit different now. So on my slide there, I have a screenshot from our current teacher resource website and CMA learn. It's really the cornerstone, our website is sort of the cornerstone of all else that we've created. And all else that we do. So all of our supporting resources are there, we try to funnel everyone through there. And, and so it's it's sort of, I feel like it's kind of the touchstone of our story. Now, in in 2017, we changed to ncma learn, so we updated it, and ardency was updated a few times, and then we updated it fully with ncma learn. And last year, we had our analytics show that we had 62,000 visitors to ncma learn. So that number keeps growing year by year. And I'll talk a little bit more about how pandemic, the pandemic affected those numbers in a bit. So about five years after we created that website. So in 2009, I just the dates are really poignant to me, they may not be as relevant to you, but I just love telling the story. So five years later, that's when we began a collaboration with the North Carolina virtual public school system to co create art courses for high school students. So originally, I don't really think that we thought about it as we want to do more in the way of distance or digital learning, it was more we recognized that we were not serving teen audiences as well as we could be. And we were thinking, how can we build upon an existing infrastructure in the state of North Carolina to better serve teams. And so the North Carolina virtual public school was in existence at the time, as a state Art Museum, we are mandated by our legislature to be statewide in our programming. So we have 100 counties here, it's eight hours from one end of the state to the other. So not everyone is in the vicinity of Raleigh. So we created those courses, and they're still active today. We're still revising them and keeping them up to date and collaborating with the virtual public school system.

Unknown Speaker 13:34
Looking back, our teacher webinars first started in 2013. And so so we had to set had some webinars there. And then webinars kind of became unpopular for a while I don't know if you all remember this or experienced this at your institutions. Of course, we're doing them again, now. They've have a resurgence. And our first online teacher courses began in 2016. So those are full courses that last for you know, several weeks at a time where teachers can earn see us and by participating in those. And finally, I have a couple pictures here on this slide. Our virtual field trip program really was piloted began in 2017. And so our model has been up until the pandemic which I'll talk about in a bit, an in gallery field trip model. So we take a cart of technology into the galleries, we have a facilitator there who leads an interactive dialogue based experience between works of art and students sitting in their classrooms. So you can see students on one end that's not a post pictures really students participating in a field trip where they can see we had a great high definition camera where we can zoom in on images and the kids can see things really well depending on the technology they have on there. And last fiscal year, we serve 4300 k 12 students through virtual field trips, that number keeps growing again. And also on this slide, I have a little picture of us doing a different kind of virtual field trip. We started doing live sessions. Where it's really using kind of the model that we're doing today. It's a one to many program. It's a little more orchestrated. I bring in the AV team for these programs. And we feature special guests like artists, or our North Carolina Poet Laureate, connecting to different exhibition themes or themes that are just relevant to our world today. And, and then we connect to classrooms across the state through those programs. So we were doing virtual field trips, live sessions, we had ncma learn in place before the pandemic. And then the last thing I'll mention is the the picture at the bottom right. We had just started a VR in the schools project, where we were sending headsets raising a set of classroom says headsets out into schools, giving the students high school students a virtual field trip, essentially, of our conservation lab, in a program that was a little more than that it was connecting art and science. And, and I'm going to kind of just drop off there and pass it to Emily, because Emily was also involved in that program with us. And B, it was, sadly cut short due to pandemic.

Unknown Speaker 16:07
Yes, thanks, Camille. So I'm Emily Kotecki. I am also based in Raleigh, and I am a museum consultant, and podcasters. So I focus on distance learning and interpretation. And I've a podcast called museum buzz. As Camille mentioned, I was working with her on these outreach programs. And the last program that I ran was March 6, and then everything shut down. Distance Learning is almost like instinctual because within about 48 hours, a friend of mine who's also an art educator, we launched a virtual pop up basically, for families where we were running daily free virtual field trips for and by families in those early days when there was no structure. But after a few months, that tapered off. And I went back to another season of my podcast, where I was really interested in engaging and talking to museum professionals, really around the world about how they thought about this idea of distance. And one of the biggest takeaways I for this session, as it relates to this session, is that those museums that either had digital infrastructure in place or quickly pivoted to that are the ones that really met this COVID moment. And so what we want to do now is kind of see where you are in this COVID moment and your own distance learning programs. So this is our first audience participation. And so if you could please click the jam board link that Camille will put in the chat box, what you're going to do is we're asking you to create a post it note to mark which image best describes where your institutions distance learning program is? Are you building a plane? Are you upgrading all seats to premium, like you're adding bells and whistles? Or are you managing the fleet. And the way to add a post it note is you're going to go to the side and click on the little sticky note icon. Chris, if you could demonstrate that on your end, you click on the sticky note, you write your name, hit save, and then move your sticky note to where you are. And you know, it gets pretty crowded, you can move it around around other people's. So we'll give you all a minute to get in and populate it and see where everyone's at today.

Unknown Speaker 18:29
Emily, can I answer a question that came up in the q&a

Unknown Speaker 18:33
or absolutely Well, people are doing this Yes.

Unknown Speaker 18:35
from Rachel, who is also at a small rural Museum, who is also only been doing physical distance learning and struggling with getting colleagues excitement and curiosity built. I can speak from my experience for me it was having the administrator be on board might our director be pushing this in basically saying this is happening. So I don't know if that can be the case in in with your situation. But our director was said this is happening. And then our board was fully behind it. And you realize that this was the way to go. And not that we were leaving behind the in person presentations, but that those things will be able to coexist in the future that we can offer both. I hope that that helps and answers.

Unknown Speaker 19:31
Christine and i is i don't know how you're feeling. It is really fun to see these post it notes kind of populate and see where we are. And I think largely we are between getting to the airport, which I like and upgrading all seats. So there is it ranges from very beginning to being pretty familiar with distance learning. And so it's really helpful, I think, for us to see where we all are. So thank you for participating in that and we will try then to kind of address in There's questions and perspectives as we go through. What we want to do now is talk about adjustments and adaptations that you have made. And so I want to start we're going to go through start with Christine and say, where are you? So you talked about where you were, when the shutdown happened? Where are you now on that jam board and what kind of adjustments and adaptations Have you had to make?

Unknown Speaker 20:24
Well, I'm not even on the board, I'm, I've just, I'm not building my plane yet. I've ordered the parts from my plane, and they're on backorder. So just that that's kind of where we are right now. And in building this lab, and we are taking, we are taking it deliberately slow, in really looking at things and doing a lot of evaluation. So that is where I am, I have done because we do still have our connections with with our schools and with our teachers that we've been working with for a long time. And they asked for programs, you know, they're like, are you doing anything virtually. So we have offered a few programs with the laptop with the integrated camera, I did a butter making program for for several of second grade classrooms. And it was very successful, until I poured cream all over my laptop keyboard, I actually cream two keyboards showing stuff up here. So So that is kind of where I am. And that's what I need. So some kind of better, or at least better showing of things, kind of outside cameras and different things where we're grabbing things here and there and moving as we go. But when we get that whole system we're really excited about so that's where I am.

Unknown Speaker 21:59
Hi, Chrissy.

Unknown Speaker 22:00
How about you?

Unknown Speaker 22:02
Yeah, so um, my, my spark is like a rotten, random smattering of different things that we've done to adjust. And I think some of this will go into a little bit more detail later. But I think the thing I really want to show here is that you can still do some really cool stuff, even if you're stuck at home, and just have to totally change the way you do things. So it kind of reconceived with things. But all these things are still possible. Um, I guess I'll start with the top, left hand picture on the screen, we started to really ramp up the volume of programs we did during COVID. I'm sure this is nothing new to everybody else in here doing the same thing as we are just doing something but then doing more of it, potentially. And so we were going live, really at the beginning of this every single day of the of the workweek. So Monday through Friday, we had a live webinars kind of Camille talked about webinars are coming back in style. Oh, yeah. So, um, are here, you know, so, and this kind of addresses sort of Rachel's question in the q&a, too, like, how do you get people on board that may not be like digitally minded, um, is, I think it's kind of listening to their ideas, like, take the digital bit of it out. So, for example, our curator, he was like, you know, I love drawing like our world war two, like macro big artifacts. Um, and I also he obviously also knows a ton about them. And so he want to do like a live drawing demo. And it's like, Okay, how do we do this now in our house, and this is actually his idea. I'm not going to take credit. So he's a little bit more tech minded. But he bought this like $30 gooseneck holder for his iPad or his iPhone on Amazon. And he ran this from his phone. So we did a zoom webinar, using his phone as the camera and doing a live drawing demo, in addition to that, having all this extra historical knowledge about the P 51. Mustang and the bf 109 measure Schmitt. So really kind of cool stuff that you can do with like, very little money. I know that's kind of nuts and bolts, and we're going to talk about that later. But, um, the other thing is, you know, we're still doing filming but obviously, you just have to take these different kinds of considerations in mind. So, here we are interviewing Walter imahara says on the right hand top picture, he was incarcerated as a child and rower and Jerome with her two internment camps and Arkansas. And this is for our next electronic field trip that's about Japanese American experiences in the war, going through multiple layers of approval to do this, making sure we do this outside and you know, and Louisiana summer that is no fun. But we sweated through it and we messed up. And we were still able to capture this interview that we'll use for this program later on this year. This is kind of pre this isn't it happened because of COVID. But we're also building a new studio and the museum that we've been doing this for 2006. We've been doing this from an office space With zoom or with, like a Tandberg equipment for a long, long time, and we're finally getting this kind of real upgrade here. And we're doing a variety of things to make these programs more interactive. So we're setting up this new studio amidst all of this and trying to get our feet wet. And trying to make the experience more interactive for students. Let's see if this works. But another thing that we've done during COVID, let me see if I can actually put this to work before I say it, um, is that we have hired a motion graphics artists to make our stuff just look a little cooler than just a PowerPoint slide. So you guys are going to see my background change here in a second of variation, dramatic, but you could see Pearl Harbor behind me with some visuals. So this is a static image that then this motion graphics artists edit this kind of visual interest to so when we're talking to students about Pearl Harbor, it's not just me in my office space, like right now, it'll with the green screen, and not with the virtual background here on zoom, it'll actually look hopefully, like we're there, we're inverse, it'll look more like we're in our, our actual galleries here at the museum. And then last, but not least, I'll talk about this, maybe a little bit depth a little bit later, um, is thing, it's okay, if some of our distance learning is not all synchronous, but some of it can be asynchronous, and still incredibly interactive. So we've used a tool, Microsoft flipgrid, in a variety of different ways. But one of them is to solicit student questions. So students on their own times, submit questions to us. And we're able to respond with a video response, or we use this as pre preparatory materials, or even after the fact materials for virtual field trips. And students are still able to interact with their own time on their own schedule, doesn't have to be live, that sort of thing. So those are some of the adjustments we've made. And let me maybe take this smoking behind me, but I'm gonna pass it back along to Camille. Thanks.

Unknown Speaker 26:59
So um, so I guess, you know, I would put us toward the, you know, the managing the fleet end of the spectrum, when, when the pandemic struck, however, I would say that, you know, we certainly like everyone else have had to adjust and realign our direction to kind of, you know, figure out what we need to be doing now, as opposed to what we were doing, then. First and foremost, and I have a couple images here, the way we do your virtual field trips has changed, in that we do them through SlideShare very similar to our program right now. So our facilitators work from home, and they still are working from home. So our site was closed and reopened in September, but there's, you know, the statewide masked mandate, there, there are reasons why going in and facilitating those tours in person is not desired. Still, we are all encouraged to work remotely. And it's just not very feasible. So we are we do these programs through a SlideShare, I'm using one of our zoom backgrounds that was created to kind of give a sense of the galleries. One of the things that I really liked about our in gallery model with the CART for virtual field trips is that students got to see the museum as a space. And for we reach a lot of kids in rural North Carolina who've never been in a museum before. And so they had a lot of questions about museum as a space. And it was fun for them to kind of look around and see people wandering through the galleries, um, we can't quite replicate that or we could if we got Christie's designer to kind of create something moving for us, but but we at least have these backgrounds to work from. So so we use a zoom webinar platform, like today, when are when the students are dispersed when they're learning from home, we can still do a zoom meeting, if they are in the classroom in North Carolina, it varies school by school, how the students are learning. And something we changed, which we have never done before is now we are more than willing to hop onto a teacher's platform. However, they are already connecting with their students, whether it's through teams or Google meet or whatever, we want to make it as easy as possible for them to have a field trip with us. So we we hop into those platforms for those programs. Also, you know, as a result of this new format, it enables us to use some digital tools. So we'll play around a little bit with some of those later, but like jam board and Padlet, we are also using flipgrid for pre visit app activity options. And so so that's pushed us to incorporate digital tools that just sort of makes sense in terms of diversify engagement, especially when you are stuck using zoom webinar. As opposed to having everything through the chat or everything through activating microphones. It gives the students a different way to engage with our works of art. Something else that happened when the the pandemic hit is my budget became more important in terms of the infrastructure of the museum. So now I am supporting we got sort of a second set of zoom accounts and 500 seat webinar and those are actually being used by other departments. So So now before it was Just sort of us in our little sort of digital initiatives with students. And now we're sort of branching out and sort of helping everyone at the museum reach their goals of reaching their audiences. Something else we did, we also hired a second virtual field trip facilitator. So both of them are pictured here, we recognize that there might be an increased demand this year for virtual experiences. And I will point out because it is something I get asked about a lot, we do have paid contractors doing our K 12 virtual field trips. And that is a very deliberate choice. We we do also have a robust docent Corps. But we made the decision to to go with paid contractors for these programs and a single facilitator last year serve 4300 k 12 students, and she worked, you know, up to 10 hours a week. So not a lot of hours, and still a pretty big impact in terms of student populations that we were able to hit and, and very, sort of streamlined in terms of that sort of mentoring and training that we can provide that that person.

Unknown Speaker 31:06
Also, I think Christine mentioned, Sal social emotional learning skills, I have here the castle framework for that. So that is also our focus in a lot of our programs, including virtual field trips this year, because it's something that teachers and students need, but also very important right now in terms of the curriculum. So we always nothing new that we always work with groups of teachers and advisory councils and other teacher collaborators to make sure that whatever we're offering is aligned with current concerns. But right now, it just happens to be that we are Sal focused. And similar. In the same vein, we are also working on a VR pilot program. And as Chrissy was talking about, we recognize the need for more asynchronous virtual experiences as well. And we had one already in the conservation lab tour, but we realized we needed more when our site shut down, and everybody wanted to get inside it and nobody could. So this program will be an asynchronous experience. And we hope to make it as accessible as possible. web based mobile friendly, to get it in sort of the majority hands of students across our state. And many places where, you know, there's there's just not access to the same kind of resources that you might have. more urban state spaces are, as you may learn, I mentioned ncma, earlier and earlier, during when the pandemic hit, we experienced a 50% increase in online traffic to the site. So this also helped us make a decision to allocate more funds from my digital learning budget, to keep the site working well. And we're moving to a new hosting site, for instance, and we have an accessibility audit coming up next quarter, so that we can work on some accessibility goals that we know we need to work on anyway. But just you know, recognizing that it has always been a cornerstone of what we do digitally or distance wise, but it's even more important that we're being used more now than more than ever. And I'll just mention really quickly, something that our organized organization did when the pandemic hit was we started this new way of communicating through an email series called ncma recommends. So prior to the pandemic, all the different departments all had their sort of newsletters and schedules for mailing different audiences, the teacher newsletter newsletter for members, when we shut down, we realized we kind of wanted to have a unified voice and that everyone's roles and identities were kind of shifting anyway, that parents and families they were becoming educators at the same time, so that their needs were changing. So it's a been an interdepartmental collaboration, which has been interesting and a new way for us to work sometimes, as you probably know, so that museums can work in sort of siloed fashions, and so just helped us sort of come together and create something collaboratively. So I will stop there and turn it back over to you, Emily.

Unknown Speaker 33:58
Thanks. The chat is going fast and furious. I want to also say that because there's so much activity in the chat, if you want specific questions that we'll try to go through, put them in the q&a box, because then they will be sure to be seen and not lost. And a lot of the chat chatter. I want to just quickly before we go to the strategies of engagement real quick, I want to ask one question to the panelists. Could be about a minute or two to address it. These are we framed that theme as like adaptations and adjustments. We are now all nine months into this pandemic and the kind of knee jerk reaction we had initially of how we reacted and worked and what we expanded or started is now kind of the debt, the dust is settling a little bit. So do you feel like this is a moment of still adapting? Or do you feel like you're seeing organizational transformation happening as a result of this is really just a distance learning?

Unknown Speaker 34:49
Um, I guess I'll start and then well, we'll pass it along. But yeah, I think Emily in some ways, I think it's both for the world war two museum. We both were all kind of in this Transition periods still were, you know, kind of mentioned maybe earlier, like we were our little mini distance learning team, we're kind of the keeper of the keys of online programs. And that was initially the case when we started training other teams Well, before we start training, other teams just kind of hosted things for them. Now, a lot of other teams are trained, and they know they run their own zoom programs now or whatever, independently of me. So we've kind of gone back to the old way of doing things, which I don't know, necessarily the best, because sometimes we don't know what what other team is doing. But the other thing that's really great that's come out of this is that I'm part of a big education department. And we're kind of like the media side and the education side. And sometimes that leads to do like division of like, again, not knowing each other and doing now folks on the education side, they're pushed to do more online types of programs. So we're working together more in a way that we only kind of wish nine months ago and some summer guards. So yeah, so good, good and bad adjusting dust settling a lot of all of that, I think, great.

Unknown Speaker 36:03
Christina, can we want to add something in a

Unknown Speaker 36:06
complete transformation complete? And somebody in the chat mentioned that I should have a document you like? Yeah, absolutely. And we had no document camera that we plugged in and nothing was working. We've since upgraded our document camera, of course, but yes, I'm going from live in person programming to to digital has been complete, a complete transformation for us. And someone asked in the q&a are educators required? Sara asked this question to provide or transition transition into both in person and digital learning. At my Museum, we're at the school programs department will we'll be doing both. But like Chrissy, we've had the opportunity to work a lot more with our public programs team, we used to be on separate tracks, you know, at different times of the year where we were, you know, busy, you know, summertime is busy for them. And, and obviously, mid years is busier for us when school is in session. But these last few months, we've had a lot of opportunity to work more with our public programming staff. And they are also willing to step in and help us out with some of this digital programming virtual programs. So that's great.

Unknown Speaker 37:33
Great, well, I want to keep our session moving along and go to talking about strategies of engagement, we're going to open Padlet. And I'm going to let Camille introduce a little bit about what this is. And is it and yeah, Camille, go ahead.

Unknown Speaker 37:49
Okay, great. Um, yeah, so I just put into the chat the link to the Padlet, so that you can navigate there as well. So I'm assuming many of you have used Padlet before. But if you haven't, I'll just briefly introduce it as a digital tool that we found really helpful, it's kind of like, Christine gave me a great analogy of like a bulletin board or way to sort of pin ideas or thoughts, I can also think of it as a place to just sort of come together and think together and sort of brainstorm even around different ideas. So jam board, which we used earlier, you know, you can put those stickies wherever the big difference to me is that in a Padlet, you've got kind of these columns, or the information is sort of organized spatially with that hierarchy of the columns. So as an art museum, we have used it with students and teachers with specific prompts at the top of each column. So we'll have a work of art within the Padlet that they can click on and they can see it larger. And then we'll ask them, What do you see that's one column? What does this work of art make you think, another column? And then the third column? What does this work of art make you wonder. And when we share it, with groups, it's really fun because kind of watch it populate in real time. So. So it's just a different way to have a conversation from our point of view. And as opposed to just us doing everything verbally.

Unknown Speaker 39:14
I want to just, we were we were using this to share with you but also as a tool for us to collaborate with you. So actually, if you click on the link and go into Padlet, you can add your own digital strategy and tools to share with the community community that's here. And we wanted to give Chrissy a chance to talk a little bit more about flipgrid while we're in the Padlet.

Unknown Speaker 39:35
Yeah, so I think I did see a flipgrid question. Come on here. So yes, flipgrid we do use in a variety of ways. We are a one of flipgrid content providers and their discovery library and a lot of flipgrid is behind the login wall because it's made for educators and they're kind of private classrooms and that's kind of the beauty of it is that we put resources out there. And then you know, we have so much data On engagement, but it's really something that's been taken by the teacher and us. And so in addition to soliciting student questions on the public side of our page, on the kind of the back end, educator login, we have a variety of small activities to engage in that will enhance a virtual field trip. So good example is, we have a program on we have a virtual filter program on the Holocaust. And a lot of kids when they come to us, they, they may have been the first time they've studied the Holocaust. So there's just kind of some misunderstanding about in general, it's a really difficult topic in World War Two, like a lot of topics are. And so if they do this preparatory, flipgrid activity, before they connect with us, it gives them a little bit of that background. And actually, they're able to respond and do certain things, not just a writing prompt, it's not just, you know, a class discussion, it's something that then, you know, they have real engagement online with. So that's how we've been using it, it's great to see other people populate some stuff in there. And I think the question on flipgrid was about permissions. And generally, I think, just to answer that one briefly, because we're a national museum, we just kind of put it out there for everyone, because we serve a very large national audience. So we don't have to deal with the permission slips of that as much like you have permission to use this video platform or not. So I'll stop there. But yeah,

Unknown Speaker 41:16
I just want to quickly address jack asked is Padlet, like Trello? Or Ms. planner? Have any of you use this as a project management tool? Are you mainly using this as a interactive tool in your distance learning programs? Mainly, audience engagement.

Unknown Speaker 41:33
Yeah, usually audience or Yeah, in the course of a think tank or meeting? Yeah.

Unknown Speaker 41:40
I want to ask one other question. Before we go into our nuts and bolts section, which I saw on the chat, people are excited to really get to that aspect. But another way to think about strategies of engagement is the strategic role that distance learning plays in engaging audiences, especially right now. How do you feel like distance learning has affected your relationship with your audiences in terms of maintaining those relationships? Going deeper with those relationships? Or starting new relationships?

Unknown Speaker 42:09
That's a good question. Um, yeah, I think, you know, for us, we were still not quite sure what the skleer will bring. My coworker Kate and I are the main people would do especially k 12, distance learning or saying, you know, we wonder what schools like they, they probably use a lot of their edtech budget, on, on getting their students ready, you know, for the school year in a variety of ways. So like, Are we going to be an afterthought? Because, you know, they don't have the fun now that our programs are all paid, we only have one paid program. But, um, so we're not sure. But we've also seen new school groups come join in that we've never had before, because the term virtual field trip is not so weird or hard to understand is it was a couple years ago. So I think we, as I said, my answer for the last question, so I think we've seen both, you know? Sure.

Unknown Speaker 42:57

Unknown Speaker 42:59
okay. Well, let's go back to our presentation and switch over to the nuts and bolts section of this presentation. We have a poll that we'll be launching. Yes, thank you. We want to kind of hand this part of the conversation over to you. So which nut and or bolt? Would you like to talk about first, if you could please vote for which one you want to start with? And we have some questions relating to these already? We'll give you a few seconds to answer that question.

Unknown Speaker 43:32
And then,

Unknown Speaker 43:34
while those results are coming in, why don't we actually go to a first question? cure a Kira or Kira? I'm sorry, if I'm not pronouncing your name correctly.

Unknown Speaker 43:42
Put it in the chat. Can

Unknown Speaker 43:44
you address concerns about access to technology and internet for some students in this actually? Yep. So let's start there. addressing concerns about access to internet for students who wants to take that?

Unknown Speaker 44:00
I'll just, I'll just start the conversation. So. So prior to the pandemic, what we were more concerned with was sort of access to technology, and internet connections within the classroom, right, because we serve a lot of rural schools throughout the state. So, you know, now that students are learning remotely, they're they're a whole sort of another set of questions and issues.

Unknown Speaker 44:28
At that time,

Unknown Speaker 44:29
we would have test calls with teachers, we spent a lot of time working with teachers to make sure they knew how to facilitate a virtual field trip. So we had a program called all about virtual field trips that they could sign up for, it's free, we just sort of walk through the steps of a virtual field trip, we did test calls, we would I had money, my budget to pay to send cameras and microphones into the classroom, and they get to keep it so they can continue to use that for other virtual connections. So So that's how we began and we're still doing all about virtual field trip programs for teachers who Still need support with that, in terms of, you know, now students being at home, I don't know, if I have a silver bullet or if Chrissy or Christine have ideas there, we are really dealing with the same, you know, circumstances that the classroom teacher is dealing with when they are trying to connect with students at home. And I have observed some recent recent virtual field trips where, you know, everybody's home environment is a different place. And, and, and the technology there, sometimes the microphones are, you know, better in some houses than others, and so forth. So I don't necessarily have an answer there. But that that's kind of how we started supporting.

Unknown Speaker 45:41
That's all, that's all great. I mean, this is a really difficult question in the times of COVID, um, we we run are all, not all of them. But if we have schools that are in either hybrid, or fully online situation, we run our virtual field trip through the webinar platform of zoom, obviously, because there's no video and audio access for participants like today, for the most part, the bandwidth, hopefully, issue is, it's a little like lower of a bar, then, you know, having everybody's video and audio on, it's not as interactive, which stinks. But we do that for both privacy, and for, you know, hopefully speeding up the connection. The other thing I would just say, really quick, and this is pre COVID, is that for a long, long time, the museum we did, we were part of Skype in the classroom. And if anybody's unfamiliar with that, I'm happy to send me an email after I'm happy to kind of go into discussion about it. But we thought Skype was kind of the most approachable kind of distance learning to to initially for whether it's international audiences, or actually Well, you know, people were familiar with it. And so that was kind of our way of reaching a new audience that we hadn't reached before with our kind of traditional virtual field trip where you have to use a video conferencing unit or this platform that you've never used before, that sort of thing.

Unknown Speaker 46:54
One of the kind of leading interest was about protocols and workflows. And there are some questions here as particularly Camille, about what kind of training Do you offer the paid educators to facilitate your virtual field trip

Unknown Speaker 47:05

Unknown Speaker 47:06

Unknown Speaker 47:07
That's a great question.

Unknown Speaker 47:08

Unknown Speaker 47:11
it's, it's sort of an organic process, I wouldn't say we have it routinized by any means, it sort of depends on the needs and abilities of the person hired into that position. So Chelsea, who was our lead facilitator, who we hired last year, sort of have a different set of needs than Charlie has, who has a slightly different, you know, background, she's an art teacher in the DC school system, whereas Chelsea has done more work as an independent educator. But we do a lot of observation, like in the sense that the the new hire will observe teaching. So my teaching or teaching of my colleagues, a lot of reflection, you know, reflections are sort of a huge part of any, I guess, training process. So. So that was a part of it. Chelsea, interestingly, had come to teach workshops at our institution for years. So she was sort of already like, we had already sort of trained her, we'd already started training her years ago, whereas Charlie, who I'm who we're working with

Unknown Speaker 48:10
now, is wonderful, she has her

Unknown Speaker 48:12
own set of approaches, but we're sort of working together to kind of develop a common language and just sort of help her get to know the collection better, she has sort of more needs to know more about our collection, we do a lot of work with questioning styles. So for us, it's critical, the the precise language that you're using when you ask students questions, so how that experience is framed, the prompts you use, and then what you do with what they give you is a lot of what we spend time thinking about together. So I've had her, I've sent her videos that you know, show different strategies being used strategies that they use, that are housed on ncma learn, for instance, that we use often with students, we also, you know, we look at Visual Thinking strategies, I've sent her to the that site and sent documentation about that, and, and just really observing and having conversations together, she has started co teaching with Chelsea so. So she's teaching in a supported environment. So Chelsea is teaching the lead facilitator will teach a, an object, and then Charlie will teach and then Chelsey will teach and then we all reflect, you know, and, and and my first question always, is, how did you know What did you like about your teaching today? Like, let's talk about that, like, that's the place where we start. And then we think about what would you like to think further about, you know, as you continue to teach, so she's gaining independence, I think, this week, I think she's going to maybe lead her own original field trips. So it's just sort of this organic process, paying attention to what that person needs.

Unknown Speaker 49:43

Unknown Speaker 49:45
The second most popular topic that people voted for was hardware and software. And so there are some questions here about how to go about finding tools or techniques to provide content in other languages. I know in offering more virtual and digital programs, museums are finding that they're getting requests from more places, and they may be had pre COVID. So any experience there?

Unknown Speaker 50:12
One tool we dabbled with, but we don't use extensively is, but the good thing is, it's free. It's the Microsoft translation tool. So how that would work is that, you know, you'd have your zoom meeting open, but then the teacher would have open the Microsoft translation in another window. So it's almost like a second room. And then they can, again, it's probably rough translations. And you know, obviously, there's probably mistakes in there. But it will, they can set whatever language they want it in and then be able to have it in the background just disappear, have it be translated into whatever language they choose. The problem with that is you kind of have to have a multiple screen setup to make it actually really work well. Okay,

Unknown Speaker 50:59
I'm gonna go to the next question. I'm also for Christy, how do you support students emotionally, maybe through SEO, when introducing a difficult topic, like the Holocaust via an asynchronous digital platform?

Unknown Speaker 51:12
Yeah, so I think for that, you know, you have some of that relies back on the teacher, because we can't see those students or responses in flipgrid, if they're not on our public side of our page. Um, the other thing, our main tool of doing that is we have a very extensive oral history collection, just kind of the nature of history museum, that's history where we could actually record, these people are still living where we can record their testimony. So a lot of our flipgrid activities, a lot of a lot of things we do here in the museum in general, are based on an oral history collection. So hearing and seeing from a real person to feel like that is a real person I'm listening to about this really difficult topic builds empathy, because you know, you feel like you're fostering a relationship with this, whether it's a veteran or Holocaust survivor, or whatever. I know, that's kind of not so unique to us. But when I think whenever you can put a face like a face in a video, I think it goes a long way in building that empathy.

Unknown Speaker 52:12
I'm going to add one more question about hardware and software, as museums, large and small make these investments in hardware or software. You talk, you all talked earlier about collaborating more with other departments? How has that color? How have those collaborations impacted the way that you can make or? Or has it bolstered your case for making those types of investments now that you're working with other departments?

Unknown Speaker 52:36
If it has, or maybe it hasn't?

Unknown Speaker 52:44
I feel bad. I feel like I keep jumping in so you can stop me totally. I'm going to. Um, so yeah, I think that, unfortunately, it seems like some people in the QA or not don't have as easy of a road. But I think people are kind of understanding of this moment, right. And that, you know, for me, museums to kind of pivot in the way that they need to in this moment, we need to invest kind of like what Christine was talking about her her board was like, let's do this, you know, whether we get this money or not. And so yeah, I feel like I almost have a hard time. I think we almost did the world war two Museum, we're moving too quickly, we throw in too much. You know, we talked about a lot of times that the world war two museum were like a teenager, you know, it's like, we're sort of established, like, we know, we're doing we're 20 years old now. So I guess we're an adult, technically. But we're still kind of moving at this quick pace. It's sometimes it got stopped to really think about it. And that's kind of where we feel with distance learning right now. We're not necessarily looking for the buy in, we just need to strategize.

Unknown Speaker 53:41
I mean, I think I think we've got buy in at the ncma. But I feel like we had it before, too. I just I feel like it's just a little bit more on everyone's radar, and maybe easier now to put certain things in motion, like. So we were talking just before the session started about captioning. And we have just started offering ASL virtual field trips, and you know, getting CART captioning for different programs. And so I was just talking with somebody on my team the other day about how now we're going to work with development developer has an idea for, maybe we will be able to have funding so that we can provide CART captioning for like everything that we're doing digitally, which would be amazing. So I kind of feel like things like that that conversation might not have happened. Like I still think we would have made our four way foray into ASL tours. But I don't know that that sort of that funding, you know, would have come about or the possibility of funding if we weren't in the moment that we're in. But I feel like the NCAA has done a really great job of sort of shifting and being nimble. And another evidence of that, I mean, even being able to hire my second facilitator for virtual field trips that actually came about as a result of redirected funds. So they were funds that were supposed to be allocated toward. I forget if it was an outdoor summer concerts or something. So there was this pocket of money. And they talked to the funder, and the funder was interested in supporting virtual field trips. And that was like, great, because I want to hire more staff. So. So I feel like I feel like that. And that happened fairly early on. So I feel like we're we we are on board, but it's it definitely has helped.

Unknown Speaker 55:16
Griffin someone asked a question about collaborating with Christie's Congress from the Arizona State. But to me, this brings up another bigger question about a lot of museums right now are are leveraging and turning to distance learning. We don't all have to do it alone. Right? So do you find that your museums are turning to other institutions or other organizations or other places to collaborate on creating these programs?

Unknown Speaker 55:44
Yes. And a little bit to the to the last question, you know, I am very fortunate to have a, you know, administration and bored to say, like, here's some money go do this. But then it was like, Hey, you go find everything that you need for this. And I'm getting in the van and drive 100 miles, but I had no idea of where so I was reaching out. And I found Camille from the ATM conference, wasn't it? And Camille put me in touch with Emily. So that was wonderful. And I did check out a lot of other museums to see what hardware was out there. And interestingly, it's different everywhere everybody has has different things. And as far as like internally, and who's helping out, internally, I latch straight on to our IT person, you know, we have one IT person, please help me. And really backed up what, what I had found, and, you know, we're going with this fully integrated system that has maintenance built in, and you know, it's very secure. So that was nice. You know, having the money is one thing, but you really do need the partnerships. And you do need the support, and you do need everything to go with. Thanks. Well, we

Unknown Speaker 57:09
are just three minutes short of ending our chat. So I'm going to ask one wrap up question that I'd like each panelist to answer, which is, what is one major pitfall that you knew about when you were starting out with disconcerning that you would advise people listening to avoid? Whoever wants to go first, you got three minutes Camille's going first? Well, I

Unknown Speaker 57:32
just thought that I don't know if necessarily everyone's going to have this problem that that I had now, now that given the age that we're in, so I don't know if it's relevant.

Unknown Speaker 57:41
But but it was sort of the biggest

Unknown Speaker 57:43
sort of surprising thing is that when we first started our virtual field trip program, it took a little time to get off the ground. Like we didn't have very many teachers signing up. And I remember the Director of Education was like, I think we should just like forget about it, you know, can't cut them. This is not a good initiative. And we we kept going. And we just sort of changed our approaches and how we remarketing. And now we've got a really robust audience. And of course, I and again, I'm saying maybe this is not relevant now, because of the era that we're in, you know, maybe we can all agree that these are useful and worthwhile ways of connecting with schools and audiences. But But I would just say like, you know, keep going and keep trying to find solutions. Even if it looks sort of grim at the start, it doesn't necessarily mean it's going to be like that forever.

Unknown Speaker 58:29
Thank you. Chrissy. Go ahead.

Unknown Speaker 58:32
I'll just say really quick, I think communication with whomever your end user is, is key. We This is nuts and bolts, we always stress a test call or a test session before every program that we do, especially with like a one on one sort of session. But between time changes, and not being able to convert time zones well, and all the different ways you can connect now this point, like we had a conversation in the chat about, hey, well, instead of just teachers using our Zoom Room, we're also inviting, we're being invited into their own whatever method of technology they prefer, you know, all of that needs to be ironed out beforehand to actually have a smooth session. And even if it isn't, you know, you might still have some bumps in the road, but that will help you kind of get off you know, on the right foot, whether it's k 12 or adult programs.

Unknown Speaker 59:17
In Christine, last word,

Unknown Speaker 59:20
baby steps and be kind to each other. Be gentle understand where people are, you know, teachers, you can throw money at things but if they don't have the time and they have so much going on right now. Just know that they're there for them.

Unknown Speaker 59:34
Thank you. Well, I want to thank everyone for being here. Chris, you just put up all of our contact information. So screenshot it find us, contact us. We really appreciate everyone being here with I think like 12 seconds to spare.