@MarDixon Passionate about culture. Champion for the next generation of Cultural visitors. Defender of Libraries. Digital, Wearable Tech Enthusiast. Sharing knowledge. Troublemaker and/or advocate, depending on what you need.
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    December 2nd, 2017mardixonCulture, International, Literacy

    In the market for books for children this Christmas season?  I’ve a few recommendations.  I’ve also reached out (via Twitter) and received some recommendations so it’s a variety of solutions!

    Just a friendly reminder that museum memberships for children is also a wonderful gift to receive!  Most if not all museums and galleries internationally have some for of yearly plan which are usually really inexpensive and provide newsletters and updates throughout the year along with discounts when you do visit the museums!

     

    The British Museum – Mummy!
    Publisher Nosy Crow
    Hardback/cardboard
    Age: Pre-school
    Description: Dig in and discover ancient Egypt!  Full of artefacts to spot and name, this friendly story uncovers all kinds of mummies – perfect ancient fun for little ones.

    Very colourful book with activities such as flap ups to look under and and ‘eye spy’ at to use throughout the book.

    The British Museum – 123
    Publisher Nosy Crow
    Hardback/cardboard
    Age: Pre-school
    Description: Discover amazing objects and simple first words in this brilliant country book for curious little ones.

    Very colourful book with a QR code for when the little ones want more information on the objects used in the book.  There is also an index at the back of the book.

    The Sixty-Eight Rooms – Marianne Malone
    Publisher: [Recommended by Seema Rao]
    Paperback
    Age: Children
    Description: [Taken from author’s website]
    Almost everybody who has grown up in Chicago knows about the Thorne Rooms. Housed deep within the Art Institute of Chicago, they are a collection of sixty-eight exquisite – almost eerily realistic miniature rooms. Each of the rooms is designed in the style of a different time and place, and every detail is perfect, from the knobs on the doors to the candles in the candlesticks. Some might even say the rooms are magical.

    Imagine… what if, on a field trip, you discovered a key that allowed you to shrink so that you were small enough to sneak inside and explore the rooms’ secrets? What if you discovered that others had done so before you? And that someone had left something important behind?

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    March 21st, 2016mardixonCulture, International, Literacy, Personal, Tech

    Today is the 10th anniversary of @Jack’s first tweet ‘just setting up Twttr’. A lot has happened since then. I would love to say my first tweet was profound but like so many, it wasn’t (you can find your #FirstTweet here).

    Screen Shot 2016-03-21 at 09.45.14

    To say Twitter has changed my life is NOT an understatement. I started off local, chatting mainly to people who were in Bridgnorth or Shropshire then started exploring museums, libraries, publishing and of course tech.  While I’ve loved Twitter from the start, it wasn’t until January 16th 2011 when I fully understood it’s power. That was the day I tweeted:

    “I Love Libraries because ______” Fill in the blank and RT! #savelibraries

    And they did. They filled in the blank and shared so much it went world trending. My first experience at seeing the power of social media. From big names (Neil Gaiman, Margaret Atwood) to local libraries to people on the street, I was being thanked for highlighting the plight of libraries world wide. (If you ever want to know *why* I tweeted it, just ask.)

    At this point I’d love to say I remember what the next world trending was but I honestly can’t remember the order.   I do know that thanks to @CultureThemes our community these hashtags have gone world trending multiple times including:

    But we’ve created communities along the way with Open Community Lab (a spin off from MuseomixUK) and @52Museums.

    twitterWe’ve worked together as a (sometimes dysfunctional) family/society. No we don’t always agree, politics are a bear, but in the end we keep coming back to this platform that makes us express ourselves in 140 tiny little characters.

    And we wouldn’t change it for the world.

    THANK YOU TWITTER!!

     

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    February 9th, 2013mardixonLiteracy

    Today is National Libraries Day in the UK.  I’m sure you noticed all the #lovelibraries and #NLD13 talk on Twitter – everyone expressing the positives of what libraries means to them.

    My story with libraries, like so many others, is very personal.  Like so many people, we couldn’t afford books growing up.  I remember several independent book shops that used to be very welcoming but always had an air of elitism about them (looking back, it was my prejudice and stereotyping).  Maybe it’s because the owners always had cats and typical arm chairs that were associated with ‘rich’ people. Read the rest of this entry »

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    August 22nd, 2012mardixonCulture, Literacy

    I first heard of Meet Me at the Art Museum via Twitter when Museum Secrets tweeted how great the book was.  I immediately knew I had to get my hands on it and was thrilled when it was sent to me.

    The book is told from the eyes of Stub, a entry ticket stub who was left on the floor of an art museum and missed by the cleaner during his routine.  This leads to Stub meeting some of the people that work within the art museum. Author David Goldin creatively takes us with Stub on the journey through the art museum teaching us new vocabulary and jobs within most museums.

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    July 1st, 2012mardixonCulture, Literacy

    London Children’s Story Centre Discover is based in Stratford, and very easy to find off the Tube. I recently visited to see the new SuperHeroes exhibition and to learn more about StoryCloud, a new web-based app that is an online story library.

    My first site when I walked in was cake! They have a lovely café at the entrance which was very relaxing and allowed you have a snack before paying admission fees.*

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    June 24th, 2012mardixonCulture, Literacy

    “50 Objects 50 Stories is a celebration of storytelling. Fifty objects from the Nicholson Museum’s collection has been chosen, not for their archaeological significance or for their aesthetic beauty, but for the often fascinating story they have to tell.”

    I’ve had the honour of following Michael Turner’s honest journey in the creation of this book via twitter.  Although Michael is in Australia, our first connection was from his passion for Kids in Museums. It was from these conversations that 50 Objects and 50 Stories started to slowly come to life. However, until I received the gorgeous book in the post I did not realize the true meaning of the title.

    The gorgeous A4 size hardback is filled with sharp, slick photos of objects that have fascinating stories to be told.  The photos, while very sophisticated, are not the selling point.  It’s the telling of the background of the objects. The historical importance.  The biography. That is the real importance. And that is what Michael Turner managed to do so flawlessly for each chosen object.

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    June 4th, 2012mardixonCulture, Literacy

    Hay Festival is celebrating their 25th anniversary this year.  If you have never been, you are missing out on the best literary festival.  Hay is set in a quaint little town in Wales called Hay-on-Wye and is sponsored by Telegraph Books.  I’ve only had the honor of going the past 3 years and I still kick myself for not going sooner.

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    April 11th, 2012mardixonCulture, International, Literacy

    Museums and the Disposal Debate: A Collection of Essays, edited by Peter Davies, is a fascinating collection of international case studies trying to answer the age old question: How to know what to keep and what to dispose. While the book is collated in academia format, please do not let that discourage you from reading the valuable real-life examples.

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    April 8th, 2012mardixonCulture, Literacy

    Along the same lines as 50 Modern Artists You Should Know, authors Kristina Lowis and Tamsin Pickeral have chosen 50 powerful paintings from renaissance to pop/contemporary and everything in between in this very comprehensive book from Prestel Publishing which is a most have for any art student or fan.

    For the most part, each painting has a comprehensive biography listing the important factors in the creators career. There is a detailed timeline on the top of the page highlight important dates in history within a century timeframe. This helps show the influences of the artists.

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    April 8th, 2012mardixonCulture, Literacy

    Anyone with even a passing interesting in modern art needs to own, at the very least, have access to this informational book by Prestel Publishing.

    While I originally debated some of the artists (Whistler and Cezanne), it is fascinating to read a fact cheat sheets on each of the 50 artists. The book is designed so you don’t have to read front to back, however, it does make for an incredibly interesting read when you do.

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