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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 72.djvu/381

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CHILDREN'S MUSEUM AS AN EDUCATOR

PSM V72 D381 A family group of skunks.png

A Family Group of Skunks. In the Room of Animal Homes.

offer such helps and opportunities as the schools and homes can not give. With that, its mission ends, and the success or failure of its work will be proportional to its skill in meeting individual needs.

About a year ago a small boy was discovered in our building leading his eleven-year-old blind brother by the hand and telling him as much as he could about the objects of especial interest. The eagerness with which this sightless lad drunk in every descriptive sentence led the museum escort to ask him if he had ever "seen" a squirrel—"No," he said, "I never touched one, but I have heard stories about squirrels—they have long, bushy tails and eat nuts." The escort then placing a stuffed squirrel in his hand, gave him one of the happiest experiences of his life. To his book knowledge he could now add a real discovery. Nor did his experience at the museum end with the squirrel; his sense of touch taught him many other stuffed animals and birds, besides living frogs, lizards and turtles. There were other museums in Greater New York, and surely far more costly exhibits, but no museum had hitherto found time to give this blind visitor the especial attention his infirmity

PSM V72 D381 Exhibit model of a parlor in 1750.png

Model of a Parlor in a New England Home about 1750. The scene shows an afternoon call from the minister and the family assembled to receive him and serve afternoon tea and cake. The details of furniture, decorations, and costumes are historically accurate. In the History Room.