ABSTRACT

Now that we have a definition of the word museum, it is time to consider why it is important that they be used in the education of children. We live in straitened times when schools have to watch over, account for and justify every last penny they spend. It is a sad fact of life that teachers will be called on, more and more, to justify the expense of taking pupils out of the classroom. In addition, recent years have been witness to much upheaval in education. A great deal of time and energy has been spent on the introduction into teaching of so many new approaches and practices in such a short space of time that teachers have often been deterred from doing anything that does not relate to keeping their heads above water. Although the situation is improving on some fronts, teachers now find that they have to produce new schemes of work, learn new skills, plough through ever increasing bureaucracy and cope with quixotic and political changes to the curriculum. As a result, visits to museums, with all the work involved if they are to be conducted properly, may not seem to possess the high priority they once did.