While in Cortez, Colorado we toured The Anasazi Heritage Center, the museum of the Native cultures in the Four Corners region. Centers and museums of this sort often tell as much about who studied the community as those who were, or are, a part of the community being studied. Culture by its very nature is always complex and complex ideas are hard to share.
The teacher in me was thrilled to see how kid friendly this sharing was. Couldn't help think of Alice in Wonderland when I read directions on these drawers. These drawers held items that related to trade. "Traders carry stories and ideas as well ideas between cultures" was the idea. In the drawer were pieces of jade, abalone, and fur. Printed beside each item were the words "Pick me up". Explicit directions to hold a bit of an idea in your hands.
The researcher in me was thrilled with the layers of history that were displayed in so many ways throughout the museum. This is a tiny chunk of the timeline that ran the length of the museum directed to students. It was the sort of place where a child or a student would want to visit again and again. So many discoveries to be made.
Anasazi Heritage Center - http://www.blm.gov/co/st/en/fo/ahc.html