Story 03: Birth of Playspace

Story | Print | eMail | Related Media | Archives

Sidebar: Before You Were Three (1978)

Written by Jeri Robinson

What Worked...

Before You Were Three took place at the museum's former site in Jamaica Plain. By this time, staff was already aware of the pending move to Museum Wharf in downtown Boston and mindful of recording successful ideas with an eye to transplanting them to their new location. The centralized location within the building and the design of the Sit Around space served the exhibit and the audience well. Many components were moveable to accommodate people or activities. In addition to the school-aged children it was directed toward, this exhibit attracted and held large numbers of parents and very young children who used it as a home base. After exploring other areas of the museum, visitors would return to the relative quiet of Before You Were Three to rest, feed the babies and relax. People stayed in this exhibit, sharing family histories and experiences with each other and the staff, who discovered that parents had a real need to learn and talk about their children's development.

...and What Didn't

As with most short-lived special events, this exhibit was not in place long enough to evaluate in depth.

Next: Sidebar: Through the Looking Glass (1977-1979)