Te Papa partnership marked at launch of learning lab

Headmaster Mr Patrick Drumm at Te Papa with Chief Executive Mr Rick Ellis, right, and Director of Collections, Research and Learning, Mr Dale Bailey.

A strengthening partnership between Mount Albert Grammar and the Museum of New Zealand, Te Papa Tongarewa, saw Headmaster Mr Patrick Drumm invited to the launch of its innovative new learning lab, Hinatore.

Mr Drumm was hosted by Te Papa Chief Executive, Mr Rick Ellis, who attended MAGS from 1967-1971 and was named Albertian of the Year in 2015.

Mount Albert Grammar was asked to attend a 'think tank' with other schools in the lab's planning stages last year. Physics teacher Ms Paula Calver and Year 13 student Jeremy King travelled to Te Papa to take part.

"We offered ideas on what experiential learning could look like, and how students in centres other than Wellington could benefit," said Ms Calver.

Hinatore is equipped with a virtual reality studio, 3D printers, 3D scanners, touch tables, and telepresence technologies that enable learners to connect in real time with those in other parts of the country, and overseas.

Learning lab spokesman Ms Miri Young says the lab is an inspiring space with a range of technologies that “allow us to learn in completely new ways”.

Te Papa’s collections, exhibitions and taonga are at the heart of Hinatore’s learning programmes, allowing learners to experience anything from voyaging the Pacific in waka, to creating digital art in an immersive virtual world.

School groups unable to physically visit the national museum are able to participate on a 'virtual excursion' using telepresence technology to explore Te Papa’s exhibitions remotely with an educator. "Our technology also enables collaborative learning opportunities for students around the country through virtual reality and telepresence tech," said Ms Young.

"We are very grateful to Ms Calver and Jeremy - they gave our team some great ideas. Jeremy did an awesome job of facilitating the conversation at his table and encouraging some of the younger students to express their ideas."

Mr Drumm said Mount Albert Grammar was proud to support Te Papa's strategic role as an educator, with a focus on innovation.

There were plans for Te Papa to also contribute to MAGS by exhibiting pieces from its collections in the school's new Science block, due to begin construction later this year. The museum's scientists could also contribute to lessons remotely through its interactive technology.

"MAGS' partnership with Te Papa will continue to develop as we find new ways of working together to enhance our curriculum," said Mr Drumm.

Find out more: https://www.tepapa.govt.nz/learn/hinatore-learning-lab