GSA Connects 2021 in Portland, Oregon

Paper No. 49-9
Presentation Time: 3:50 PM


HARGRAVE, Jennifer, School of Geosciences, University of Louisiana at Lafayette, 104 E. University Circle, Lafayette, LA 70503

Last year saw the closing of many museums and science centers, including the Lafayette Science Museum (LSM) in Lafayette, Louisiana. During this time, the University of Louisiana at Lafayette School of Geosciences, in partnership with the LSM, hosted a National Science Foundation-funded traveling exhibit called “In Search of Earth’s Secrets”. The exhibit highlights science topics explored by the JOIDES Resolution and was specifically designed to foster hands-on, interactive learning at a variety of kiosks. In addition to serving the LSM visitors, several community events were planned to reach underserved populations within the community using “pop-up” science events. The community events were canceled because of the pandemic, and the museum was closed for over a year. New activities were developed so the community could participate virtually to meet the objectives of the NSF grant and the exhibit. The strategies included creating and disseminating videos summarizing five of the exhibit kiosks, developing hands-on classroom activities for elementary schools to reinforce the information in the videos, and producing “Earth Science to Geaux” activity packets for the LSM and public library patrons to explore Earth Science at home during the summer. Having these strategies in place allows the museum to continue to share the science and activities from the “In Search of Earth’s Secrets” traveling exhibit long after it is moved to its new location. Additionally, the LSM can use the outreach strategies to continue offering hands-on experiences, both in-person and virtually, for future exhibits.