A new approach to museum learning
Te Papa has been a world leader in creating innovative and interactive museum experiences since we opened in 1998. Since then, we've seen dramatic and exciting changes in education and the ways people of all ages want and need to learn.
More and more we're seeing an increased demand for personalised, culturally-relevant, and future-focused experiences.
Digital technology is enabling this type of learning and it's making it possible for learners to be more connected.
But it's not just about being 'high tech' – it's about connecting our learners to Te Papa's extensive collections which span across Mātauranga Māori, art, history, science, and Pacific.
Introducing Hīnātore | Learning Lab
We wanted to offer learning experiences for visitors of all ages (we’re all learners!) in a welcoming and inspiring environment. We needed to be able to complement our exhibitions, and enable our learners to get more in-depth and creative with our fantastic taongataonga treasures and collections.
We drew on education sector best practice including innovative learning environments, inquiry-based learning, real-world wicked problem solving, and 21st-century learning skills to inspire our learning approach: collaboration, creativity, communication, critical thinking, curiosity, and cultural engagement, and completely re-developed our former classroom space to become Hīnātore | Learning Lab – an innovative learning environment that's been designed for learners of all ages.
As well as being beautiful, Hīnātore represents a new way of empowering learning here at Te Papa. Our learning programmes are learner-centred, hands-on, and collaborative. The magic happens between learners of all ages, educators, and our staff – we’re all learning from one another.
Our learning programmes for schools, kura, and formal groups
We work with a range of learning environments including early childhood, primary, and secondary in English and Māori medium contexts.
We use a STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and maths) approach that supports learners to make interdisciplinary connections.
Our learning programmes are specially designed for different groups of learners and are all inspired by Te Papa’s collections and the 21st-century learning skills.
Our formal learning programmes are designed to be cross-curricular and can be tailored to suit different needs and curricular areas, facilitated by expert educators who can challenge and support meaningful learning.
A new Virtual Excursion learning programme offers classes who are unable to come to Te Papa the opportunity to explore our spaces virtually.
Like our exhibition-based learning programmes, Hīnātore learning programmes are available in Te Reo Māori and are aligned with Te Marautanga o Aotearoa.
We’ve loved watching learners create their own WOW-inspired costumes, design their own vaka in 3D, scan and narrate themselves in dioramas in response to our Gallipoli exhibition, and use green screen technology to place themselves in paintings in our collections. You can see examples of these creations here under each programme.
Our programmes operate across a spectrum of engagement, including a range of cutting-edge learning technology, including a virtual reality studio, telepresence technologies, robotics, 3D printers and scanners, and touch tables.
These technologies enable new ways into learning and are used in meaningful ways for some of our programmes to strengthen learners’ digital fluency.
Telepresence technologies and our digital learning resources give learners and teachers an opportunity to participate in Te Papa learning remotely.