When discussing cultural education, it is important to remember that it is not just for children – a point also underlined by the materials on key competences and lifelong learning recommendations.
Adults involved in cultural activities have a number of specificities in relation to children which are worth bearing in mind when providing educational services for them: adults learn faster than children when what needs to be learned is based on their accumulated experiences and when they have an active role in the learning process; adults do not feel comfortable in situations of competition and assessment of competences, but react positively to cooperation, teamwork; when faced with a new learning situation, adults may have a feeling of insecurity, therefore the cultural education specialist must do everything possible to alleviate this feeling.
Thus, in designing educational services for adult audiences, it is recommended to build on participants’ experiences and focus new information around situations with direct applicability to real life.
For the adult audience, too, we need to be as detailed as possible in order to know who we are addressing and, depending on the characteristics of the target group, what types of services we can propose: members of a particular community, people already involved in other types of education with individual enrolment, employees or members of NGOs participating in training sessions, teambuildings, etc., people interested in a particular field such as literature, theatre, visual arts, history.
For example, in order to make the most effective use of the specific field and to ensure the widest possible impact for the proposed initiatives, we can approach teachers with a view to transferring methods. Thus trained, teachers can then apply what they have learned in school, gaining expertise in lesser-known areas and improving their methods of dealing with the groups of children they work with in the formal education system. Highly motivated teachers could be extremely interested in such initiatives.
One such project dedicated to the training of teachers was selected in 2022 for funding in the Multi-annual Programmes area by the Administration of the National Cultural Fund, i.e. Why Bring the Museum to School. The project was proposed by the Da’DeCe Association in collaboration with the Casa Corpului Didactic of the Municipality of Bucharest and the Museum of the Municipality of Bucharest and will run until the end of October 2023. The organizers aim to provide teachers in Bucharest and Ilfov county with a series of tools specific to museum education, allowing them to increase the efficiency of their teaching, through interdisciplinary and collaborative approaches. Teachers will thus benefit from a better understanding of how museum heritage can be used as a valuable resource both in school activities and for the organisation of extracurricular activities. The projects run by Da’DeCe Association, as well as various extremely useful educational resources are presented here.