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A Day in the Life: Intern Ashley

October 28, 2010

When asked to write a post about a day in life of my job here at the DMA, I wondered how I would ever choose what to include.  My days at the Museum are so varied, from docent trainings on Mondays, meetings galore on Wednesdays, to catching up on anything yet to be done on Fridays.  So, I decided to select a day that is one of my favorites and really illustrates the reasons why I love my time at the DMA: Thursdays!

My Thursday calendars primarily consist of two activities: touring and researching

Touring: From 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Thursday mornings I have the pleasure of touring K-12 students at the museum.  I typically arrive at the docent desk fifteen minutes before my tour to ensure that everything is on schedule before welcoming the children into the Museum.  Once everyone is in the door, we talk about museums, museum visits, and things to remember while on the tour.   The students are always eager to share their knowledge of museum etiquette: “stay with the group,” “use inside voices,” and “keep a safe distance between ourselves and the art.”  Next, we head into the galleries to look closely at six or so works of art.  Since we only have an hour for our tour, I attempt to be as strategic as possible, selecting objects across a wide variety of cultures, time periods, and media.  The students are amazed to realize how much they can discover just through looking and how much knowledge they already have.  It is such a joy to share in their experience!

Research: My Thursday afternoons are spent researching various objects in the collection, compiling information, and writing text, which eventually becomes online resources for teachers to use in their classrooms.  I also research special exhibitions and some of our collection for upcoming teacher workshops.  For example, I’ve been conducting research the last few weeks on The Mourners: Medieval Tomb Sculptures from the Court of Burgundy in preparation for our upcoming workshop on French art.  It is wonderful to have the opportunity to learn about periods in history and styles of art to which I’ve had little exposure or with which I’m less familiar. 

Teaching and research are two of my passions, and I feel so lucky to be able to dedicate a large amount of my time to pursuing both.

Ashley Bruckbauer

Programs and Resources for Teachers Intern

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