The 21-Tech initiative has allowed me as a Discovery Guide to push myself further on how much information I can process and share with each visitor I encounter.- Odis Garrett, Children’s Museum of Houston Discovery Guide
21-Tech is a bridge between our museum guides and the visitors in that it creates connections between educational concepts and the real world.- Shawn Waxali, Children’s Museum of Houston Discovery Guide
21-Tech has helped Discovery Guides engage visitors by extending their experience through the apps and applying it to the exhibits.- Ian Tibby, Children's Museum of Houston Discovery Guide
21-Tech is a way of ‘hiding the vegetables in the fruit’ where the kids do not realize they are learning, but instead having fun and being fed knowledge that intrigues their minds.- Lauren Bell, Children's Museum of Houston Discovery Guide
21-Tech provides a new outlet for our Discovery Guides to interact with the visitors in a way that further enhances their experience and makes the visit overall extra enjoyable.- Sylvia Garcia, Children's Museum of Houston Discovery Guide

App Post Category – Inquiry

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Often, we see visitors only using an exhibit one way without really taking the time to explore the exhibit in more detail by generating their own questions. The “What happens if…?” tab is used to give Children’s Museum of Houston visitors different ways to use the exhibit by posing questions to test and prompting them to create and test their own questions. The questions encourage visitors to stay at the exhibits longer by trying new things they may not have thought of on their own and begin engaging their own curiosity so they begin creating their own questions to investigate. We also prompt them to share their investigations and what they found through the comments section of the app. To see more of how we use these posts, download the free More CMH app at iTunes or Google Play.

  1. October 22, 2015


    Hi Brooke, thank you for your valuable input! I completely agree with you. I have observed visitors ask the type of question they would not have without the app. I know this because I have asked them myself about the type of question they asked their child. Contents in the app, including the role-plays are a great way to engage with the children and ask them real-world questions based on the exhibits they are in or the components they are trying out.

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Project Brief

21-Tech partners study and share the effective use of Personal Mobile Technologies (PMTs) by gallery facilitators in their work with visitors. The initial three years (2011-2013) of 21-Tech are funded in large part by a 21st Century Museum Professionals award from the Institute of Museum and Library Services. The project is led by the Children’s Museum of Houston in partnership with Lawrence Hall of Science, New York Hall of Science, Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, and Sciencenter. For more information, please visit the About page.

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Additional support provided by: