19 Dec 2018 Attractions Management Handbook
 

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Attractions Management Handbook - Today’s Children, Tomorrow’s Future

Editor’s letter

Today’s Children, Tomorrow’s Future


“Youth are not vessels to be filled, but fires to be lit.” If attractions can actively engage and nuture younger visitors, the future of our tomorrow will be brighter

Helen Patenall, Attractions Management Handbook

Children of today are the future of tomorrow’s world. If we can inspire their naturally inquiring young minds and empower them to solve problems as resourceful and creative thinkers, we’ll be equipping them with the tools to succeed – playing, living and working in our technology-driven digitalised global economy.

The growing skills gap in STEAM must be tackled. Raising the standard of informal non-gender biased STEAM education to bridge the curriculum gap is a major contribution our sector can deliver to establish a future workforce keen on STEAM, chiefly, engineering – the nuts and bolts of our future age.

This foresight will pay dividends for an industry ever-more reliant on VR, AR, AI, robotics and drones.

The desire of our tech-savy audiences for the next best immersive digital attraction, deeper personalisation and more bespoke offerings cry out for the inventive ideas of engineers specialising in electronics, audio, visual and lighting.

By fostering channels of communication with young people in decision-making processes, science centres and museums can trigger and reinforce this keen interest in STEAM. By listening to young people’s opinions on educational activities, exhibition design and apps, as well as F&B and retail offerings, we can better appreciate and then engage their mindset. This will not only establish a strong, independent generation of STEAM enthusiasts but also more engaged visitors who beg their parents to visit a science attraction, rather than the other way around.

But it’s not all about technology. We also need to empower young people to make sound choices for a sustainable future.

By encouraging play and education in natural outdoor settings, zoos and aquariums can also do their bit to strengthen family and community relations while enhancing our health and well being. Intrepid initiatives today will help to breed a new generation of conservationists committed to ensuring that rhinos roam safely in the wild on our precious blue planet tomorrow.

Helen Patenall, editor, Attractions Management Handbook helenpatenall@leisuremedia.com


Originally published in Attractions Handbook 2017 issue 1

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