Created in 1970 as Education Division, the Education Department of the Uffizi Galleries proposes and creates programmes, initiatives and educational materials for schools, families and a varied adult public.
The Department has always considered teaching of “inclusive protection” as an essential part of its heritage education programme. This is a way to safeguard artworks, involving all people in a task that is about more than simply transmitting the sense of art heritage; it also involves the defence of the cultural values they convey. Art belongs to all of us in a universal sense, and artworks play a tangible part in creating personal and national identities. This is why we feel that the development of this concept within the different generations of those who will be using our educational services is so important.
For a younger public, in addition to the now traditional lesson “My First Museum”, from the autumn/winter 2016-17 period we have brought in a new tour, “Doorsteps and Workshops”, in partnership with the Municipality of Florence. Our family-based activities, such as “Families at the Museum” and “Fabulous Museums” have also been a great success. These tours, together with all the other proposals for primary schools, involve children in a fascinating journey through our cultural heritage, using a method conceived by Maria Fossi Todorow, to develop active learning, based on a dialogue in front of artworks, arousing curiosity and observation, and guiding children on their personal discovery of works and their meanings.
The same idea of “inclusive protection” is also a significant element with regard to a public of young adults, as part of the Work Experience Project offered by the Department. In this case, the distinguishing element, alongside the acquisition of skills and education with regard to our heritage and its protection, is that of making young people the focus of activities that put them in direct contact with artworks and the sophisticated mechanism of museum operations.
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