By Anna Wade
“A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives,” reads the Jackie Robinson quote that hangs above a series of eight maple lockers in the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum’s new Learning Center.
It was fitting that the room opened Thursday with a monthly meeting of Museum educators who dedicate their time to teaching students the important connections between baseball and social studies, math, science, and character education. Located on the Museum’s first floor adjacent to the Buck O’Neil Award exhibit, the Learning Center will host visiting student groups as they explore the living history at Hall of Fame as well as daily programs and public events.
The room is now open for scheduled school and family activities throughout the year. Hands-on programs based on the Museum’s educational curriculum allow visitors to explore artifacts and objects as they discover connections between baseball and American History. This new space features a hands-on equipment display, interactive time-lines and presentation spaces, and a changing exhibit that showcases student and teacher work.
Every year, the Hall of Fame hosts more than 90 K-12 school field trips featuring guided tours of the Museum by Hall of Fame educators, and an artifact-based experience in the Learning Center. This addition to the Museum experience raises awareness about the Hall’s educational mission and allows each visitor to explore artifacts in a new way.
We could not be more excited about the new opportunities that we will have for school and public programs, and we hope that you will stop by to see our Learning Center on your next visit to Cooperstown.
Anna Wade is the director of Museum education at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.