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Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Hot Topics: Museum Education & Social Media

Hot Topic posts come from the desk of Jacquie Severs, our Manager, Communications & Social Media. 

Social-media-strategy1

Last night I went to Whitby to meet with a group of art gallery and museum workers known as the Museum & Art Gallery Educators Collective – Durham, or MAGEC-D. This collective is aimed at those who live and work in Durham Region in the Museum and Art Gallery field, but it is open to all who are interested and includes members from Peterborough as well as recent graduates from programs such as Fleming College’s Museum Management. 

I attended the meeting last night at the request of Christine Castle, a Museum Education Consultant and publisher of the Museum Education Monitor. I was pleased to lead a discussion on social media within educational efforts at museums and galleries. It was a fun, chatter-filled night with each institution who attended sharing their ideas and progress, challenges and triumphs. 

From my perspective social media can offer insight into what happens behind-the-scenes and bring the collections out to the community in new and engaging ways. It helps us open up our vaults, so to speak, to show what it is we do and educate our friends locally, regionally, nationally and even internationally about our collection and historic significance. Social Media is often thought of as purely marketing but the educational components are so inspiring as well. 

Two examples of using social media in the education department here at the RMG are our Youtube page, which offers behind the scenes looks at installations and the projects that our summer campers create, and our Facebook fan page, which shows student work from our many classes and camps each Tuesday

Here are all the institutions that participated last night and their various homes on the web. If you are interested in history, culture and the arts in Durham Region, following along with each profile will provide you with loads of interesting and educational content.

Museum Education Monitor

 Website
Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
Blog

Station Gallery, Whitby

Website
Facebook
Twitter
Youtube
Blog

Oshawa Community Museum

 Website
Facebook
Twitter
Youtube
Foursquare
Pinterest 

Art Gallery of Peterborough

Website
Facebook 

Pickering Museum

Website 
Tumblr
Flickr
Youtube
Facebook
Twitter 

The Robert McLaughlin Gallery

Website
Facebook
Twitter
Blog (you’re here!)
Youtube
Foursquare
About.me

What would you like to see your local gallery and museum do using social media websites? What kind of content interests you? We’d love to hear from you in our comments section.