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How to engage participants in historic spaces through inquiry and facilitation

How to engage participants in historic spaces through inquiry and facilitation

In today’s episode, Dr. Stephanie Smith, Learning Manager at the Museum of Australian Democracy (MoAD) in Canberra, shares insights into MoAD’s approach to engaging visitors in historical spaces.

Steph talks about MoAD’s educational programmes, focusing on their inquiry-based approach and how they encourage an ‘inquiry mindset’ through active student participation.

We also explore the team’s teaching methods and how they use intentional and scaffolded open-ended questions to spark student curiosity and participation. We discuss the importance of making students feel heard, encouraging them to share thoughts, and creating a positive, participatory learning environment.

We also talk about MoAD’s learning team’s distinctive professional development (PD) model, built on collaboration, continuous learning, and reflective practices. We discuss their regular ‘Slow Looking PD’ exercises, where the team think and learn together by reflecting on various provocations and questions (including episodes of The Art Engager!). ‘Slow Looking PD’ is a deliberate practice that helps the team at MoAD to improve how they teach and support students.

Throughout the episode, Steph shares lots of strategies for student engagement and reflective growth. Whether you’re interested in engaging with students, innovative teaching methods, or a facilitation-focused approach to team PD, there are so many takeaways from this episode. Listen to the episode below or read the transcript.


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Claire Bown: Hello and welcome to The Art Engager podcast with me, Claire Bown. I’m here to share techniques and tools to help you engage with your audience and bring art, objects and ideas to life. So let’s dive into this week’s show.

Claire Bown: Hello and welcome back to The Art Engager podcast. I’m your host Claire Bown of Thinking Museum and this is episode 119. So today I’m talking to Dr Stephanie Smith, Learning Manager at the Museum of Australian Democracy in Canberra, about how they engage students in a historic space. But before that, last time I was talking to researcher and practice assistant, Leonie DeLay, about how museums engage with young people, particularly through youth advisory boards.

Claire Bown: She shared the nine building blocks she’s identified To help museums reflect on their strategies with young people, address challenges and to enhance the effectiveness of their youth engagement initiatives. So do listen to episode 118 when you get a moment. And now that The Art Engager has over 100 episodes, this podcast is a great resource.

Claire Bown: You can take your pick from the huge back catalogue of different episodes to brush up on your skills, be inspired and learn new techniques. So if you want to support this show and keep it going from strength to strength. Please do so by treating me to a cup of tea on buymeacoffee. com forward slash Claire Bown.

Claire Bown: I’ll put a link in the show notes. And finally, if you have a question for the show or want to suggest a guest, feel free to get in touch. I’d love to hear from you. Okay, let’s get on with today’s show. Before I share our conversation, let me introduce my guest today. Now, I’ve known Steph for a couple of years now.

Claire Bown: I first got to know her when she enrolled her team facilitators into my VTMO team training course. We worked together online over the course of 10 weeks exploring questioning techniques, facilitation skills, and of course, thinking routines in the museum. And recently, I had the good fortune to meet Steph in person at MoAD in Canberra and lead a few workshops for Australian educators.

Claire Bown: It was a joy to go and see the museum in person, to hang out with the team over a few days, get to know how they work and observe their excellent facilitation and inquiry skills in action. So Steph has previously worked in primary classrooms and a wide variety of cultural institutions across Australia.

Claire Bown: Her work at MOAD focuses on empowering young people to amplify their voice through the building of leadership skills, developing solution focused mindsets and growing their media literacy skills. She leads an amazing team of educators who deliver onsite and digital programs as well as run professional development sessions and create resources for teachers.

Claire Bown: Steph loves picture books. baking and most importantly supporting teachers and other museum professionals to grow their skill set. Now Steph exemplifies what it means to work from an inquiry mindset. She’s curiosity driven, inquisitive and actively engages in professional development and reflective practice.

Claire Bown: She’s constantly seeking ways to improve and innovate in the work that they do at MOAD. In today’s conversation, we talk about the different types of educational programs that MoAD offers and how the team fosters student engagement and participation. Steph highlights the importance of working with and from an inquiry mindset.

Claire Bown: We discuss how they intentionally design open ended questions for their programs, structured in such a way to help students feel at ease when sharing their thoughts. And we talk about how they encourage students to explore and express curiosity by noticing details and asking questions, rather than merely transmitting information.

Claire Bown: We explore MOAD’s unique approach to team professional development. They have a facilitation- focused approach that encourages collaboration, continuous learning, and helps to build a reflective practice amongst team members. We also discuss the team’s regular ‘slow looking PD’ assignments, where they pick a provocation and use that to identify areas for growth, reflect on their strengths, and develop more awareness about their practice, both collectively and individually.

Claire Bown: Finally, Steph shares tips on how you can introduce a more facilitation focused PD approach with your team. It was lovely talking to Steph about engaging students in historic spaces and facilitation focused PD, and I hope you enjoy our conversation.

Claire Bown: Hi Steph, and welcome to The Art Engager podcast.

Steph Smith: It’s an absolute pleasure to be here, Claire. Thank you for inviting me.

Claire Bown: You’re very welcome. So could you tell our listeners who you are and what you do?

Steph Smith: Ah, my name is Stephanie Smith and I am the Manager of Learning at the Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House, which is in Canberra, Australia.

Steph Smith: And I look after a wonderful learning team and we look after a whole range of on site programs. We do digital programs and workshops, as well as creating a whole host of resources for teachers and running teacher professional development.

Claire Bown: Fabulous. Now I’ve had the pleasure of visiting you at Old Parliament House, a very special location, a very special building.

Claire Bown: So perhaps you could tell us a little bit about Old Parliament House and MOAD.

Steph Smith: So we’re very fortunate here in Australia that we actually have two Parliament Houses. So Old Parliament House was our provisional Parliament. We collected up some money and we built a new Australian Parliament House that is located just behind our building where Parliament currently sits.

Steph Smith: So we have many stories from the time that the politicians worked in our building. So it’s an object in itself that tells our Australian history, our political So we’ve been talking about the history and the story and changes that have happened over time, but now we are also the Museum of Australian Democracy and we have contemporary exhibitions as well in our spaces which help us look at how democracy has changed since the politicians left our building and what we’re looking at in the future and helping to create space for interesting discussions around the idea of democracy.

Steph Smith: Brilliant.

Claire Bown: And as you say, the entire building and the contents within are an object themselves. And your team who offer educational programs, they get to work in these historic spaces, such as the Senate chamber and various other places within the building. It’s a beautiful building. I urge anyone to go to the website and have a look.

Claire Bown: So perhaps you could tell us a little bit about the types of educational programs

Steph Smith: that you offer. We are really fortunate. We have lots of schools and students that come and visit us from across the country. So in a normal year, there’s about 85, 000 young people that come to Canberra and we have the great fortune of hanging out with. But one of my favorite things is when they arrive, they pop on these little white gloves and it helps us out with the heritage messaging.

Steph Smith: Our building is almost a hundred years old now, and we want to make sure that. These young people understand how special and significant the experience is and that they can help us to look after the heritage in the spaces. And so as part of our experience, we visit contemporary exhibition spaces where they engage in a trail program.

Steph Smith: So We have RFID technology, so like the chip in your credit card and students work in small groups and they tap next to a computer screen and it changes the content to questions that we have developed and these are all aligned to our curriculum here in Australia. And these questions ask them to go and look at an object, a photograph, explore a piece of text, and then they come back and answer some questions to go with that and think about how it relates to them.

Steph Smith: So that takes up part of their experience. And then the other part is generally visiting either the House of Representatives or the Senate chamber where we look at. our story of how democracy works here in Australia. And in particular, we focus on how young people can contribute to our democracy and how they can make sure that their voice is heard in the conversation.

Claire Bown: Thanks for explaining that. I think you have quite a unique approach. How do you approach engaging students in particular, which seems to be your main audience amongst others, in this historic space?

Steph Smith: So we come from an inquiry mindset that’s really important to us and noting what I’ve just told you about the importance of young people fitting into our democracy, something that’s really important to the way that we engage students is making sure that they feel heard and that the way that we’re facilitating our programs allows them to share their thoughts and ideas.

Steph Smith: Throughout our programs, we’ve specifically shaped Open ended questions which allow students to feel comfortable sharing with us. They’re scaffolded from the moment that they arrive, when we consider what democracy means to them, and giving them opportunities to connect with the people around them, test out their answers before they share with us to make them feel more comfortable, and especially so we can develop some risk taker kind of behaviors with them where they want to dig a little bit deeper with us and share some of their thoughts and ideas.

Steph Smith: And so this really flows through all of our programs, and. For our facilitators, especially when we’re in historic spaces, the conversation is very much come from a place of, what do you notice? We want students to pick out objects or ask questions that they’re really curious about. What’s got them wondering today, rather than our presenters delivering facts to students.

Steph Smith: Every program is very different because we’re leading from this place of what are you curious about today when you’re sitting in a senate chamber. Is it going to be The red seats, is it going to be the clocks or who sits in the seat, in the seats on the second floor, or perhaps the chairs they can see.

Steph Smith: And that allows our presenters to then lean into those curiosities and share information. Yeah.

Claire Bown: It sounds like your programs are very active, they’re very focused on the participants, participant centered, you’re coming from this place of inquiry. How do you ensure that your programs are participation based?

Claire Bown: How do you ensure that students stay active when they’re with

Steph Smith: you? For us, it’s about offering, different experiences depending on the space that we’re in. Having our Democracy Trail and using RFID technology is very different to experiences that students will have at other museums here in Canberra.

Steph Smith: And it really allows our facilitators to move around the space and get to know students, find out about What other cultures they’ve already visited, what knowledge they already have, what they’re interested in while they’re completing this trail. But in the chamber, it’s very much about making sure that they feel they’re being heard and that our presenters are active listeners in the conversation.

Steph Smith: And so we really want them to feel, especially with questions like, What kind of change would you like to make in the world that we’re there and we’re listening to what they have to say, and we want to make sure that we’re sending them away with this idea that they can be a good citizen, they can participate in positive change, and it doesn’t have to be for joining me.

Steph Smith: Big things. It can be little things like being kinder to each other, thinking about what you pack in your lunch box. And I think the fact that throughout our programs, we’re changing up the way that we’re communicating with students, and we’re moving through different spaces and looking at artworks and objects and spaces within themselves really helps to keep our students engaged.

Steph Smith: Yeah, so you

Claire Bown: said that you’re changing up the way that you communicate with students in the spaces. Could you give us an example of what that might look like?

Steph Smith: So in our main exhibitions we have to obviously open the program. So we have to our presenters give a bit of context about the spaces that they’re in.

Steph Smith: But that’s also driven from asking questions about, What they’re noticing as they walk into an exhibition space. And when we’re wrapping up presenters will often pick from different artworks- we have the most incredible craftivism banners that sit in our Democracy, DNA and Changemaker exhibitions, which always draw students in because they’re brightly colored, there’s glitter, there’s really simple, clever slogans. And it’s a lovely way for presenters to be able to wrap up the learnings that have happened in the space and be able to invite students into a conversation. So I think the fact that the way that we’re communicating is a mixture of these really honed in kind of questions that we’ve worked as a team on and that are scaffolded throughout the experience, layered in with these experiences of trail, of artworks and of spaces as well.

Steph Smith: I think it just adds something, an extra dimension to the experience.

Claire Bown: And one thing that struck me about working with your team over, a period of time now getting to know you online and then getting to know you in person recently was that I never met any team that spends quite so much time thinking about questions and questioning.

Claire Bown: And this has really struck me as well, how thoughtful your presenters, your facilitators are, and about the types of questions they ask, and how they land with the students, the responses they’re getting, and really thinking so carefully about the words they use and how they might phrase those questions to really open up a conversation with the student.

Claire Bown: So talk to me a little bit about questioning.

Steph Smith: I think for us, There’s been a lot of reflection across the team about those types of questions that we ask because they’re so important to our experience. And As a team, we are quite curious and when we talk to each other and when we’re discussing changes we want to make to programs or when we’ve delivered something and we just want to walk it through, there’s always the kind of language of ‘you’re making me think about’, ‘I wonder how we could phrase that slightly better…?’ ‘I wonder what would happen if we asked this type of question?’, which then we’ll test out with students, but I love that our facilitators have the same kind of inquiry language in the way that we reflect and engage with each other. With the questions in particular, if I come back to the one I talked about when we were, when they first arrive and they’re in the orientation space, We really focused on this idea of we’ve got students who are coming to us with a lot of knowledge about democracy, where we’ve got other students who are arriving where this may be the spark of their unit of work with a teacher.

Steph Smith: And it’s the first time that they’re really digging into what democracy might mean. And so we needed a question that was quite inclusive and allowed for a range of responses where students could feel successful. And that was really important in that idea of asking, ‘what does democracy mean to you?’ And then allowing them the space and time to be able to turn and talk to the person next to them, test out their responses with someone else before sharing them with us.

Steph Smith: And then there was way more chance that they would be successful in whatever they responded with. And I think that’s quite helpful and in our reflections, we feel like that sets them up for the rest of the experience in our spaces. And we’ve talked quite a lot as a team about why you don’t ask a question like, ‘what is democracy?’

Steph Smith: It’s a slight change, but it’s a way sharper question that, that is a harsher one for students to answer, especially if this is their first experience with, arriving in Canberra and learning about democracy to ask that kind of question and it can put them on a back foot. And that will then affect the rest of their program.

Steph Smith: And so there’s been a lot of thoughtful input into those types of questions that we’re asking students so that we can make sure that they are as successful as possible in our program. And I guess the other thing that you’re making me think about, Claire, is that. Something that’s really ticked over in my mind is that none of our questions are fact based.

Steph Smith: I, I’m not interested in students remembering when the building opened in 1927. I’m not interested in them being able to recite. the names of the chambers, or remembering some of our first senators and members of the house. I’m really interested in questions that have multiple answers to them. So thinking about things like, ‘what do you notice in a space’ that helps students to be successful because there’s so many things they can pick out. Asking as you walk into an exhibition, ‘what do you think ‘this space might be about?’. What are you noticing in the banners?’ Or ‘what stands out to you?’ These are all really deliberate in our programs so that it is about the experience and that curiosity that we want to encourage so they’ll come back and visit us again.

Claire Bown: I love that. I love that kind of being really deliberate and intentional about the questions you use and very subtle shifts. You’re moving from what is democracy, which is a big kind of quite, well, nebulous kind of question to answer at any time of day for anyone.

Claire Bown: To thinking about what democracy might mean to you. It’s a very subtle change, but the responses that it must garner is probably quite incredible. I’d love to move on to talk about your professional development for your team, because another thing that struck me from working with you is that the way you approach PD within your team is different to a lot of museums that I’ve worked with.

Claire Bown: This is one of my favorite things is the way that we do professional learning with our team and.

Steph Smith: We’re all learners. We’re all growing. I’m a learner. I’m always developing my skill set. And what I want for my team is that they’re excited to learn, new techniques to try different ways of asking, questioning, and to have built in that reflective practice skill set. So something that’s really important to us is when a new member arrives, it’s not just about this training package that you deliver and you’re, here’s our program, away you go, you’re ticked off, you’re good to deliver it and forevermore.

Steph Smith: That is it. For us, it’s about digging into inquiry as a starting point and the idea of open ended questions. We’re so used to asking closed questions. They’re more comfortable. They get an instant answer. It takes a bit of time to shift that practice, but for our team, something that I’m incredibly proud of is This idea of ‘slow looking PD’

Steph Smith: – slow looking professional development. And what we do is every couple of weeks, and this is for our permanent staff, but also our casuals. And we have different slow looking PDs that we pop out for both groups. But this idea of picking a provocation. Sometimes it can be a Claire Bown episode.

Steph Smith: That we’ll ask them to listen to and they’ll have a couple of questions to reflect on. Sometimes it could be a Trevor McKenzie graphic that they might be looking at and considering how we respond to students. Sometimes it could be Something linked to democracy in particular, or young people sharing a message that’s important to the work we’re doing.

Steph Smith: So we have lots of different options for presenters, but the idea is That they’re bite sized chunks, that it’s one small part of the puzzle and we’re building up their skill set. For example, we did one around, I’d created a word cloud, with lots of different ways that you can respond to students.

Steph Smith: And the questions at the bottom will be things like ‘what does this make you think about?’ Or ‘how is this relevant to our programming?’ And the idea with that is that they’re starting to reflect on the way that they present. But what I was getting at with this particular slow looking PD was ‘How do we honour the students voices as they’re responding to us?’

Steph Smith: How do we make sure that we’re responding back in an authentic way rather than saying the same thing? Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. And it’s all the same responses throughout your program. What’s a way we can mix it up so that you’re, that’s interesting. Thanks for sharing that. with me today. I really appreciate that response.

Steph Smith: You’ve made me wonder about so different ways that we could authentically interact with students, but also building in that reflective practice with our team so that they start to think about, Oh, I can hear it. I can hear that I’m saying the exact same thing in all of my programs. Let me pick up another one.

Steph Smith: And what we ask them to do is share a small snippet of their reflections. I’m hoping that somewhere they’ve got a nice Word document open where they’ve got lots of reflections, but we ask them to just share one or two things with us. And that helps me to see where they’re at. It helps me then to see where we can grow, where they’ve got really great skills and they can share them with the team so that we can honor the experience that they’re bringing to the learning team, but also where we might want to do other professional learning. We do all sorts of things, like I’ve done small ‘smarty packets’ where they’ve created animals out of them as a creative challenge. We’ve also done ones where They’ve had to go into the studio and record themselves presenting, where we did, that was a much longer one, where we practice our kind of co presenting.

Steph Smith: All sorts of things come up in there and we really enjoy the opportunity, to grow, but to share with each other what we’re taking away from these slow looking experiences.

Claire Bown: Oh, sounds fantastic. It sounds a lot of fun to start with. So you get to play around with thinking about creativity, thinking about reflective practice, really looking back at what you do and how you do it, but you’re doing it collectively as well.

Claire Bown: Which is super interesting because people can then learn more about each other,. And the other thing I wanted to mention is that I’m doing some reading around reflective practice at the moment, and it always seems such a nice idea.

Claire Bown: ‘Oh, reflective practice. Yes, we should do it and we should do it often’, but it’s carving out the time and the space for that to become regular. And that’s the whole point of reflective practice. And it seems by doing it regularly with your team and doing it collectively, you’re enabling that reflective practice to take place, rather than being a nice thing to do, but there’s never time to do it.

Steph Smith: Yeah, and I guess it’s just become, you’re right, it’s become part of our norm of how we run our programs and, the team being able to have conversations with each other. We did this fantastic thing, Claire we used to have a workshop space while we were waiting for our exhibitions to be built.

Steph Smith: And we had this beautiful little task where students would have a hexagon and they work in groups of three, and they respond to a question that was up on the walls, that students had helped us create. And we’d ask the team when they came back downstairs after their program, they’d have like 20 of these little hexagons and we asked them to pick three and my favorite thing was watching them sit at our big table where the rest of our team are and the chats they would have as they unpacked them. and picking them and talking about, ‘I had a conversation with this student and they were talking to me about their local community…’

Steph Smith: I found it really interesting when I saw the drawing that they chosen to put on this particular hexagon and it was such an important moment where they were just sitting and able to take that time to connect and to be able to respond. in an authentic way with each other and because we’re unique in the sense that a lot of our programs are delivered with two presenters together and having that opportunity to connect with each other and to build their relationship was just so exciting to watch and what we’ve done now that But we have our permanent exhibitions is that we they come down and tell us what students have said, what kind of changes they would like to make.

Steph Smith: And we keep them up on a wall. They pick their top three and we graph them over the months to see how they’re changing based on students that are coming through, based on what’s happening in the media and watching that, that change of what’s important to them. Fabulous.

Claire Bown: So we’ve talked a little bit about questioning. We’ve talked about honouring responses, which I think is super interesting, thinking about the responses you give and how you can genuinely show appreciation and value what someone has said. What about language? How do you work on the language that your team uses when they’re with groups?

Steph Smith: There’s multiple things in there. For starters we want a positive experience in the museum. So we’re very mindful that we are facilitators of learning and that students are coming with their teacher. We utilize the teachers to help us more so with any behavior management so that we can maintain that positive relationship.

Steph Smith: But, We try not to shut students down in their responses. We try and be really considered in the way that we’re answering them, especially if they’re giving an opinion. That’s very interesting. I appreciate you sharing that with me or helping to redirect. in a more positive way rather than going, you’re wrong.

Steph Smith: And that’s very much so that they feel that museums are a place for them and that they know they belong here and we want them to come back and visit us again. But something else that has become really important to our practice is even just like gender neutral language. I’m really triggered these days by the word guys and in our programs, making sure that we’ve got options for the team to use that is more inclusive of our participants and honouring who they are.

Steph Smith: And we talk quite a lot to the team and do a few reminders every now and again guys will pop up about, students even members when we’re sitting or senators when we’re in the space team and the language that we use so that we can make sure that we’re being more inclusive of others. And that is a, that’s a shift in the way that, that you talk. And it’s not so easy for people. It takes a little bit of time, but we think that’s important especially to honour our young people.

Claire Bown: And it’s developing that awareness as well, being aware of the times that you are using certain words.

Claire Bown: And once you develop that awareness, it makes it easier over time to substitute other language that might be more inclusive to everyone. Yeah, it’s fantastic to hear you doing that. Also reminds me of the episode on the podcast with Margaret Middleton when we talked about inclusive language as well.

Steph Smith: Yes, definitely one of my faves, but they’re all my favourite, Claire.

Claire Bown: You have to say that because you’re on a recording with me. So I’d love to ask you what have you noticed with your team from having these regular slow looking PD exercises, developing a reflective practice, what have you noticed from this process?

Steph Smith: I feel in particular, it’s given them a deeper awareness of our philosophy that underpins our programs. It really helps them to lean into this idea of inquiry that is so important to not only our on site programs but the way that we deliver experiences in our digital studio and it helps them to not see themselves as a tour guide and that they are absolutely a facilitator of learning and that we want students to do the heavy lifting in our programs.

Steph Smith: We want to hear more from the students than we do our presenters and this is quite a big shift for people especially if they come from other culturals or if they are not used to working in a museum at all so therefore they don’t. quite have the questioning techniques yet,

Steph Smith: Because we’ve got a lot of team members that are either coming from different museums, so they’ve had different experiences, or this is their first time working in a cultural institution, it can be overwhelming. And so what I find with the slow looking and the way that we scaffold the experiences, it makes it these beautiful bite sized chunks that just help them get a deeper understanding of the program and what we want to achieve for our young people. And I just don’t think you can get that from reading program notes. So this just really helps us to invest in our presenters and to make sure that we’re creating this incredible experience for the students and teachers that are coming to hang out with us.

Steph Smith: And it’s something that’s different from what they’re seeing at other museums. Yeah,

Claire Bown: and what I think I’ve noticed as well is it the whole team feels they’re a part of something. So they are actively working together to work on their practice and it’s not a top down led management instituted program.

Claire Bown: This is something they’re a part of and that they’re actively shaping and you can really see that within the team

Steph Smith: as well. I absolutely agree with that. And, a lot of the slow looking ideas, whether they know it or not, come from the team, when they’ll pass on some feedback or share something they’ve really enjoyed that will spark something in myself or some of my other senior educators that can then turn into a slow looking activity for everyone to engage with. But I think Claire, it comes back to that idea of we don’t often present in isolation that, when we’re standing in the chamber, we have big groups of students. And so there’s often two people. And so we need the team to have this strong bond because, for us, It’s 16 programs a day that are running from 8.

Steph Smith: 30 in the morning to 5, and our team generally present three of those, and they’ll be working with different people, and we want to make sure that across the team, they’re they get to know each other, that they have that same shared philosophy, but they’re still bringing their own spark to the presenting, but that it’s very cohesive.

Claire Bown: And you can definitely see that. What advice could you share for listeners who want to incorporate a more facilitation focused PD approach to their team? Have you got any tips or ideas?

Steph Smith: Always. I think start small, would be my advice is to take a moment to observe. and to see what’s happening in programs and then pick one small thing to focus on first.

Steph Smith: So whether it’s this idea of What open ended questions do you ask during a program or whether it’s how do you engage students with a particular object or artwork and getting them to share some of their responses, but picking something small and manageable. As a first starting point. Some of our activities are even around, connecting team members.

Steph Smith: The last two weeks we’ve been doing shared craft together where they sit at they’re invited to choose someone else to co create a piece with. So they can be very creative, with some veggies thrown in there that they might not notice. But some of the questions we ask are, what did you learn?

Steph Smith: about the person that you chose to create with, and why is this important to what we do here at the museum, so that it leans into that reflection. But absolutely take a look at what’s going on, what’s important to you in your programs, in your philosophy, and then select one thing to help you on that journey.

Steph Smith: Some great advice

Claire Bown: there for anyone who’s looking to incorporate more of this into their approach with their team. We do need to wrap things up now, so perhaps you could share with listeners a little bit about where they can find out more about you and MoAD and the team.

Steph Smith: Sure, you can absolutely check out the MoAD learning website.

Steph Smith: And I highly recommend looking at our resources. We incorporate a lot of visible thinking routines into those. So they’re well worth a peek. You can find me on Instagram, Steffi underscore Smith underscore Enquirer, and there’s a museum Facebook group. As well, museum educators that you’re welcome to join, share lots of bits and pieces in there and some of the slow looking activities as well in case you want to pick them up and borrow them for yourself, you’re absolutely welcome to.

Claire Bown: we’ll put all the links in the show notes so that people can find out more about you and your team and that Facebook group you mentioned. But I just want to say thank you so much for coming on the podcast today. Thank you so much for all your input.

Steph Smith: Ah, Claire, it’s been an absolute pleasure. And as always, you’ve made me reflect on my practice, which is a great thing. And I’m excited to have been able to share some of the work that we do at the Museum of Australian Democracy. So thank you for the opportunity.

Claire Bown: Oh, you’re very welcome. Pleasure to chat to you as always.

Claire Bown: So a massive thank you to Steph for being on the podcast today. Hope you enjoyed our chat. Go to the show notes to find out more about Steph and the work her and her team do at the Museum of Australian Democracy or MOAD in Canberra. Do go and find Steph on Instagram too. And if you’re interested in participating in some gentle and restful slow looking, come and join us in the Slow Looking Club.

Claire Bown: We’ve got monthly themes and regular get togethers, all based around the idea of slowing down and noticing more. I’ll put a link to the Slow Looking Club in the show notes. That’s it for this episode. Thank you for listening. I’ll see you next time. Bye. Thank you for listening to the Art Engager podcast with me, Claire Bown.

Claire Bown: You can find more art engagement resources by visiting my website, thinking, and you can also find me on Instagram at Thinking Museum, where I regularly share tips and tools on how to bring art to life and engage your audience. If you’ve enjoyed this episode, please share with others and subscribe to the show on your podcast player of choice.

Claire Bown: Thank you so much for listening and I’ll see you next time.