"There is no border in the world of internet but this world has been only for adults. However World Museum Project can let our children enjoy connecting with people around the world. .." (excepts from a judge's comment for World Museum Project after it received an Excellent Workshop Award in the CANVAS WORKSHOP COLLECTION 8 in February, 2012.)

Mission

In the 21th century, we will need the skills to "find solutions to problems with no correct answers that we face today by collaborating with people of different cultures and generations".  World Museum was created as an environment to learn these skills, by a network of many teachers and museum coordinators around the world.  So far (June, 2012), hundreds of children from Japan, Australia, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Phillipines, Russia, Greece, Spain, USA, Honduras, and other countries have joined and collaboratively created many animation projects. Many of the projects have been shared online.

Scratch

As the tool for creation, we have used Scratch, developed at MIT Media Lab as a creative learning environment, and used by hundreds of thousands of people around the world.  Scratch can be used easily by small children as well as adults to create many different types of projects including animations, artworks, and stories. 

Transcultural Learning

So children start by enjoying to create their works with Scratch. Then, as they have successfully created their works, they get interested in sharing them with other people, commenting on each others' works, and being inspired by each others' works.  In this process, they expand their focus from the artifacts to the people.  Further, as they try to collaborate with each other, they experience differences in cultures and ways of thinking among themselves.  When they overcome these conflicts, their focus expand again to the shared meaning they were able to find in these collaborations.  Some of the children who experienced this kind of meaningful learning, try to continue learning by inviting friends or by collaborating with the partners in the world.  In this way, as they expand their visions from the artifacts to the people and to the meaning, they seem to develop their passions to learn with partners in the world.

Partners

In recent years, we have about four major events each year, connecting workshops held at different locations in the world.   In 2012, we have had workshops at Toyota Hands-on Museum in Japan, Powerhouse Museum in Sydney, Australia, LEAD in Hong Kong, and Boston Children's Museum.  In these workshops, children have enjoyed creating animations using Scratch, and experienced collaboration across cultural and generation boundaries.  We connected these workshops in different locations online using tools like Skype and Ustream, so that people can communicate with each other.

In Toyota, Japan, Chukyo University students have helped those children who want to continue their creative works and collaboration with the world partners, by having workshops at the university or visiting their local schools working with the teachers.

We hope that the children who have participated in the projects of World Museum will keep collaborating in the future across cultural and generational boundaries to challenge the difficult problems that we all face today!