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Act Four

Are kids afraid to go to museums? These kids aren't. Erica Fields says the DuSable Museum of African American History, the Chicago Children's Museum, and the Museum of Science and Industry are among her favorites. Sophia Sherry says she is drawn to museums that have interactive exhibits—stuff for kids to do. Mark Hill agrees—the more interactive the museum, the more it encourages kids to be curious. Mark admits you won't find his friends at art museums and suggests that educators have to present the arts creatively—using the arts students are already interested in—to engage them in the classroom. Teacher David Lopez emphasizes the human resources that go into this type of learning. He says building partnerships in the community and collaborating with artists in the classroom is an effective strategy. But he admits that he's encountered many teachers—often ones who have been in the system for a long time—that aren't inspired to do this type of work. Teacher Michelle Perkins says she's seen many students who are so conditioned by the school system that they have trouble using their imagination. She uses art to challenge them to do just that—and express themselves in the process.

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