Lisa Brahms is Director of Learning and Research at The Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh as well as project lead for the museum’s newest permanent exhibit, the MakeShop. Dedicated to “scaffolding authentic making experiences for very young children”, Lisa is interested in providing innovative learning experiences that inspire joy, creativity, and curiosity in her position at the museum.
Guided by the ongoing design philosophy to “play with real stuff”, The Children’s Museum has developed and introduced The MakeShop, the latest interactive exhibit that follows a long line of other educational innovations, including the garage and the water exhibits that families have enjoyed for some time.
Lisa cites two trends that have broadened innovation at the museum – specifically, the widening use of digital media and technology in informal learning spaces and a movement to include children in the middle demographic, ages 8 – 12, in interactive and creative learning experiences. As a result, in cooperation with partners like Carnegie Mellon’s Entertainment Technology Center, and the University of Pittsburgh’s UPCLOSE program, exhibits like the MakeShop, where parents and children alike can learn to sew, woodwork, solder, and more through practical application and creative learning, have become a reality.
Lisa holds a Ph.D. in Learning Sciences and Policy from the University of Pittsburgh and earned her Masters in Museum Education and Elementary Education from Bank Street College of Education.