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The Advisers 'Pilots'

Frank Oppenheimer soon discovered that an essential to success is to have freely available advice and help from what he called 'Explainers'. In the Exploratorium these are mainly students, wearing distinctive clothes, and they are vitally important for ensuring a warm and friendly atmosphere as well as showing people what they can do and what they can discover.

They are not teachers in the usual sense; and frankly, even teachers of the best will can come between their pupils and the phenomena and wonder of the world, which we particularly wish to avoid hence individual exploration. There should be plenty of activity going on, and also quiet places for individual thinking. Readily-found information should encourage imaginative and directed exploration; new techniques for providing information will be tried out and developed.

Based on the American experience, and also from our own experience in our three exhibitions, we regard it essential to have, continuously available helpful people (who may be university students, retired teachers and academics, or people from the professions) to show people what to do and the implications of what they discover. They will be the 'Pilots' guiding our Explorers.

 

Adapted from: The Exploratory Interactive Science Centre, Plan for Action 1, February 1983 and The Exploratory Interactive Science Centre, Plan for Action 2, February 1985.

 

   
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