CMSM opened its new permanent site with increased capacity to serve as an informal learning center that playfully engages children, families, and school groups in interactive experiences with the art and cultural heritage of southern Minnesota. With its current appropriation, CMSM is poised to strengthen its core as an institution that promotes arts and cultural heritage learning through continued
CMSM will build upon the work that began with its 2015-16 appropriation by (1) Remediation and further development of exhibit areas that promote Arts & Cultural Heritage (ACH) learning (2) Expanding ACH learning opportunities for new audiences at off-site locations; (3) Engaging an outside Evaluation Consultant to help plan/implement strategies that meaningfully assess ACH learning outcomes and impacts; (4) Boosting the Museum’s capacity to serve more school/early learning groups.
In May 2009, the Minnesota State Legislature asked the Minnesota Humanities Center and four state councils-the Minnesota Indian Affairs Council, the Council on Black Minnesotans, the Chicano Latino Affairs Council, and the Council on Asian Pacific Minnesotans-to collaboratively create new programs and events that celebrates and preserves the artistic, historical, and cultural heritages of the communities represented by each council.
The Children's Museum of Southern Minnesota planned for the cultural alignment of the permanent Children's Museum's art curation, signage, and interactive experiences. The primary focus of this cultural content related to southern Minnesota including Dakota art, culture, and heritage and complemented the Exhibit Development and Fabrication Legacy grant goals.
In 2007, the Children's Museum of Southern Minnesota (CMSM) conducted an environmental scan of early learning opportunities for children in southern Minnesota. It became apparent that the region creates few opportunities for children to engage in self-directed learning experiences in social settings; in particular, opportunities that create access to arts, culture, and heritage. This is still true today.
The program that we are proposing has three components; 1) weekly arts club that provides arts education and peer mentoring for youth that are designed to introduce youth to traditional Somali arts. 2) A Somali arts show and cultural learning opportunity taking place at The Southern Theater in Minneapolis through The Southern’s Arts Residency and Art Share Programs. 3) Showcasing Somali art at the Somali Independence day Festival in 2017.
Arts and Cultural Heritage funding will allow us to pursue three major initiatives between July 1, 2016 and June 30, 2017: (1) Offer special exhibits and programs promoting creative & critical thinking in our main museum in St. Paul. (2) A Pop-up satellite Museum at the Mall of America featuring four changing exhibits to attract thousands of new visitors. (3) Changing exhibits and access at Minnesota Children’s Museum-Rochester to ensure inclusive family experiences for the Rochester community.