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  • Educational Content

    I have been full time homeschooling our daughter since the fall. There is lots of good content out there but regardless there WILL be a learning gap despite any schools, parents, and/organizations best efforts during this time.

    Edutainment used to be a hallmark of the Disneyland and the brand in Walt’s day. I would love to see more of this. We need it.

    Schools seem to be doing more with things like Mission to Mars for example exploring robotics, engineering, chemistry, etc...

    I think if they starting trying to create more educational content they could be gaining more great PR going back to their roots.

    Any armchair imagineering about what you’d like to see?
    You know, I have the strangest feeling that I've seen that ship before. A long time ago, when I was very young. ―George Darling
    It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell. ― Walt Disney

  • #2
    I’ve never been a fan of Edu-tainment and while I see where you are coming from, I don’t see DL as filling the gap.

    I think this is better accomplished by museums and other establishments which are dedicated to learning and already set expectations for such.

    The education focused aspects of the park have never aged well, and as technology advances faster and faster, the idea that Disney could have something forward thinking and ready before it becomes yesterday’s tech is unlikely.

    I use Innoventions often as an example. The one time I went in there, it was loaded with tech that was 3 to 4 years behind the curve. As someone who works in the technology industry, I was embarrassed by how ‘old tech’ was being promoted as the next great thing in there.

    There are plenty of educational sites in and around LA that are better for this (which is even more important to think about if reducing crowding at DL is a priority).

    California Science Center, home of the space shuttle Endeavor

    Griffith Observatory

    La Brea Tarpits

    The list goes on.
    Mike_M

    Disneyland Trips
    Walt Disney World
    Disneyland Paris

    1980, 1982, 1984, 1986, 1987, 1989
    1990, 1992, 1993

    2000, 2001, 2006, 2007, 2009
    2010, 2011, 2014, 2016, 2016, 2017, 2/2019, 11/2019
    2020

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Mike_M View Post
      I’ve never been a fan of Edu-tainment and while I see where you are coming from, I don’t see DL as filling the gap.

      .
      I agree with this. We need more math, science, and language skills in education. None of that is very fun, the "fun" comes later after a good education, a good career, and then being financially secure in life.

      To me the "entertainment" part used to be recess period. Going OUTSIDE and playing and letting off some steam before coming back inside to tackle long division and science. Any other inside the class room entertainment came from reading classic stories and novels. But you can't do that until you know how to read.

      Comment


      • #4
        Well

        Were I'm one Enjoy place's such as
        California Science Center
        Griffith Observatory
        La Brea Tarpits
        as well many and many Museum's........
        I still feel there room ,in Theme Parks for Edu-tainment !

        IMO = one can learn.....every day, nor matter were they at ....
        content intended to teach but has incidental entertainment has value.
        Soaring like an EAGLE !

        Comment


        • #5
          I think the parks did a great job at sprinkling in education- DCA's Golden Dreams and tortilla factory. I personally enjoyed Innoventions and felt they showcased upcoming tech like the Segway, touch screen monitors(before they were mainstream) and smart home appliances. I also appreciated the interactive health exhibit(physically seeing fat on display and virtually aging yourself due to effects of smoking, poor diet etc).

          Growing up, I loved the Imagineering commercial segments on the Disney Channel where they showcased how physics concepts applied to real-world examples like the roller coasters. I'd love to see those come back.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Mike_M View Post
            I’ve never been a fan of Edu-tainment and while I see where you are coming from, I don’t see DL as filling the gap.

            I think this is better accomplished by museums and other establishments which are dedicated to learning and already set expectations for such.

            The education focused aspects of the park have never aged well, and as technology advances faster and faster, the idea that Disney could have something forward thinking and ready before it becomes yesterday’s tech is unlikely.

            I use Innoventions often as an example. The one time I went in there, it was loaded with tech that was 3 to 4 years behind the curve. As someone who works in the technology industry, I was embarrassed by how ‘old tech’ was being promoted as the next great thing in there.

            There are plenty of educational sites in and around LA that are better for this (which is even more important to think about if reducing crowding at DL is a priority).

            California Science Center, home of the space shuttle Endeavor

            Griffith Observatory

            La Brea Tarpits

            The list goes on.
            Disneyland is so good at edutainment that you don't even know that it's occurring.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Right Down Broadway View Post

              Disneyland is so good at edutainment that you don't even know that it's occurring.
              examples please...

              edit:
              Current examples still in the park?
              Last edited by Mike_M; 01-23-2021, 12:54 PM.
              Mike_M

              Disneyland Trips
              Walt Disney World
              Disneyland Paris

              1980, 1982, 1984, 1986, 1987, 1989
              1990, 1992, 1993

              2000, 2001, 2006, 2007, 2009
              2010, 2011, 2014, 2016, 2016, 2017, 2/2019, 11/2019
              2020

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Eagleman View Post
                Well

                Were I'm one Enjoy place's such as
                California Science Center
                Griffith Observatory
                La Brea Tarpits
                as well many and many Museum's........
                I still feel there room ,in Theme Parks for Edu-tainment !

                Best time to visit Griffith Observatory is in the late evening on Monday when the inside of the Observatory is closed to the public--- but the grounds are still open till 10PM to walk around. Park down by the Greek Theater (as long as there are no events going on at the theater), then hike up the road and get to the observatory from the "exit road" approach. Then you can still walk around the perimeter of the observatory and enjoy the views of the city scape below. Far fewer people and the hike is great exercise.

                Much like Disneyland, Griffith Observatory since the remodel is much too crowded, especially during the summer evenings. But maybe with the parking along the roads all metered parking now, the crowds will come down a bit.

                I used to do the hike up there every Monday night from Los Feliz to the observatory and back when I was working over in Hollywood. I would do it later in the evening and be there just before 10PM when they start shooing people away. Such a nice experience when there are only a few dozen people around, mostly photographers getting night shots, or some couples having a romantic stroll.

                It is closed now during Covid, but try the Monday night hike sometime as I described when thing sget back to normal. And don't be concerned about the dozens of roaming coyotes you will see, they won't bother YOU, although if you bring a pet, they WILL try to eat it... just saying.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Chief Leaky War Canoe View Post

                  Griffith Observatory is in the late evening on Monday when the inside of the Observatory is closed to the public--- but the grounds are still open till 10PM to walk around. Park down by the Greek Theater (as long as there are no events going on at the theater), then hike up the road and get to the observatory from the "exit road" approach. Then you can still walk around the perimeter of the observatory and enjoy the views of the city scape below. Far fewer people and the hike is great exercise.

                  It is closed now during Covid, but try the Monday night hike sometime as I described when thing sget back to normal. And don't be concerned about the dozens of roaming coyotes you will see, they won't bother YOU, although if you bring a pet, they WILL try to eat it... just saying.

                  When I go to LA......
                  One area, I enjoy is Griffith Park....there so much to do and see there.........
                  As for roaming coyotes......They are now in many area's in South Land......they even in our city parks were I live.
                  One needs be careful Day or Night ,no matter ! Thanks for the the information

                  Soaring like an EAGLE !

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I would suggest calling your local school district and ask what websites they are using, or local private schools...this is not locked and hidden secrets...or check their website for that information...also type in Disney history for historical content or technical content...
                    I am old. But still love Disneyland.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I’m not saying there aren’t hundreds (even thousands) of local organizations that don’t meet the educational needs of their communities to a far better extent than Disneyland of Disney as a company does. Nor that I have not found and used incredible resources for homeschooling. We’ve had great access to online programs and resources throughout museums and organizations not just in the US, but all over the world.

                      What I am saying is that given this unparalleled moment in time, the resources and technology they have mixed with the extreme need over the entire population, offers a unique opportunity for Disney to enlighten and inspire again. I think it was a big draw in the beginning. People went to have fun but parents also enjoyed that the attractions that were layered with Walt’s innate ability to teach with the laughter and fun.

                      I think people really get stuck on innoventions as how they did it wrong but your missing the point. Disneyland didn’t and doesn’t need to predict the future, it can inspire it though. The company is wildly popular and has the attention of a large part of the population. They have the opportunity to garner attention and PR in this respect that would help them tremendously long term.

                      There are some edutainment attractions that are, like @RightDownBroadway said, Disney is pretty good at making you forget you’re learning. I would tend to agree.

                      here’s a couple lists:

                      From a blogger:
                      https://travelmamas.com/educational-...and-with-kids/

                      From Disneyland as class offerings:
                      https://www.disneyyouth.com/programs...on-series,dlr/

                      From WDW as class offerings:
                      https://www.disneyyouth.com/programs...on-series,wdw/

                      Do you notice nearly twice as many programs at WDW? I do.

                      We’ve not been to Disney World yet, but I’d argue that they dedicate large portions of their parks to scholarly endeavors. Epcot and nearly everything in it? Animal Kingdom? Why doesn’t Disneyland do that? I don’t get it?

                      Simple improvements that could be made at Disneyland:

                      Instead of taking things out of Main Street, include more turn of the century inventions, with a nod to the carousel of progress. In fact I’ve always thought that area that links Main Street and Tomorrowland begs for something that could bridge or history with our future.

                      Great Moments with Lincoln does a beautiful job of exactly what I’m talking about, but they could bring more early American history alive which would be amazing. Look at how popular Hamilton (still) is, don’t tell me people wouldn’t love it if Disney didn’t go deep on this.

                      Simple improvements that could be made to DCA:

                      Animation Academy could be pluses in easy ways for them that would make it easy let more interesting to guests. Redwood creek is lovely but it could easily include a little more investigation of the natural world. Soarin’ could have include more exploration of aeronautics and Incredicoaster could hand some fun interactive Physics activities nearby.

                      Do I think they could or should do this right away? No, not at all.

                      Do I think this next decade is going to be VERY hard for them and they’re going to have to reimagine how they engage with their guests. Especially younger ones? Yes, I sure do.

                      I am merely suggesting that Disneyland look at adding enriching experiences where they can and that they would profit greatly from it if they did.
                      You know, I have the strangest feeling that I've seen that ship before. A long time ago, when I was very young. ―George Darling
                      It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell. ― Walt Disney

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I do apologize if any of that came across heated or aggressive at all. I’m just passionate about education and love Disney 😉
                        You know, I have the strangest feeling that I've seen that ship before. A long time ago, when I was very young. ―George Darling
                        It seems to me that we have a lot of story yet to tell. ― Walt Disney

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Mom kissed Walt View Post
                          I do apologize if any of that came across heated or aggressive at all. I’m just passionate about education and love Disney 😉
                          We’re all passionate on here, especially when discussing our personal ideal version of the park. I may not agree with you on this one, but I respect your position and your passion.

                          Personally, I see Disney is at their best when inspiring adventure and fantasy in us. It’s timeless and never becomes outdated or stale. That is the focus of the entire Western half of the park IMO, and is what I enjoy the most about the Disney Parks experience. It’s long been my belief that if Tomorrowland fully embraced the Adventure and Fantasy aspects of Science Fiction over real life science, it would finally achieve timelessness and correct the fatal flaw it’s had since its inception.

                          It may not surprise anyone to hear that I didn’t really enjoy EPCOT (the front half with the expos especially) or DAK for the very reasons you mentioned them.

                          EPCOT has the same problem as Tomorrowland, it ages poorly. Let’s compare ride tech to make a point.
                          -Test Track vs. Radiator Springs Racers.
                          Both rides have similar bones to them: The first half tells a story, and the second half takes you for a thrilling ride.
                          For me, Test Track’s story doesn’t inspire anything. The story is pretty easy to throwaway and I think most people are just waiting for the first half to be over so they can experience the speed run. It’s also on its second version already and shows that without constant story and tech updates, it will quickly fall behind.
                          RSR on the other hand is more entertaining, has more immersion into the world and story, and the payoff is greater. The first half of the ride pulls you in and is just as entertaining, if not more so, than the 2nd half. This is Disney storytelling at the top of its game. RSR is not only an improvement over Test Track, it’s potential for timelessness is significantly greater.

                          DAK has a couple issues for me.
                          It’s a beautiful Zoo, but a zoo none the less. I personally don’t see spending the kind of money and time a Disney trip needs on a zoo. Most cities have zoos of their own and if I’m going to go to a zoo, I’ll do it locally.
                          In addition, its biggest problem IMO is that it’s a little preachy with its message. The negative impact of poaching and deforestation are pointed out all over the park. While I agree with the message, it’s a bit of a downer and points out what’s wrong with the world more than what’s right. This dour message is the opposite of Disney’s usual message of celebrating what’s right with the world and doesn’t sit right with me.

                          I know that there are people that love these two parks, and that’s ok. I like that I can skip them and have the experience I want.

                          Ultimately, Disney has been failing at creating timelessness with science related edu-tainment in the parks for decades now. For me, the concept has run its course and is ready to leave the Castle parks. and Tomorrowland specifically, for good.
                          Last edited by Mike_M; 01-25-2021, 12:56 PM.
                          Mike_M

                          Disneyland Trips
                          Walt Disney World
                          Disneyland Paris

                          1980, 1982, 1984, 1986, 1987, 1989
                          1990, 1992, 1993

                          2000, 2001, 2006, 2007, 2009
                          2010, 2011, 2014, 2016, 2016, 2017, 2/2019, 11/2019
                          2020

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            DL was at his best when everything was sponsored and the mfg's showcased their products.


                            "These are a few of my favorite things"

                            sigpic

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Mark Twain View Post
                              DL was at his best when everything was sponsored and the mfg's showcased their products.

                              As well ,I enjoy the sponsorship at Disneyland......
                              and learning about company's and there products.
                              I agree......
                              (I thinking how 1967 Tomorrowland sponsorship work well together=IMO )
                              Soaring like an EAGLE !

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Education in practice has changed a LOT since Walt's day. Back then, for the most part, education was about learning The Facts, about whatever. Sometime between now and then though, the practice changed a lot. Starting in ...idk, the '90s?... with an expanding media environment, video games, amazing FX in movies, and then the internet, education had to become more interactive to keep up with the students. So now, students are basically charged to observe, explore, then reflect on all that. So maybe just sprinkle some signage around, with brief explanations or historical/relevant stories? Nothing intrusive, maybe even just enough info to leave you wanting more, just things you could notice, have a look at while you're in a queue, or maybe just outside the exit? A QR code could lead to interactive semi-quasi-educational games/content, but that would be a LOT of behind the scenes work.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  MrGoat

                                  To expand upon your comment, I’d say that people in the 50’s & 60’s had much less exposure to the world at large. Television was gaining speed, but most of what people knew of the world was found in their personal encyclopedia or National Geographic magazine.

                                  To see what Walt was putting into the park in those early years was awe inspiring to the average American. There was nowhere else you could experience all of what there was to learn about.

                                  Keep in mind that Frontierland and Adventureland were originally much more true-life based as well in those early years. How many adults back then saw their first Elephant or Lion on the Jungle Cruise, or rode a donkey for the first time there? Walt was giving people something they couldn’t get anywhere else. But even those early lands and attractions moved away from real life to embrace fantasy. The jungle Cruise became funny, and the donkey ride eventually became the mine train through nature‘s Wonderland which had its fair share of Marc Davis humor and fantasy as well.

                                  Today, it’s pretty easy to get access to the real life equivalence of the fantasy that Walt was selling. The zoo up here in Seattle is beautiful and owes much of its character to what Disneyland started. Travel to the real Caribbean or New Orleans for that matter would cost roughly the same or maybe even less than a Disneyland trip would today (If the park was open of course). The science museums that I mentioned earlier in this thread are beautiful, educational and entertaining.

                                  Once the real world became accessible to the masses, the need for Disneyland to stick to its true-life roots lessened. IMO, It has become a place that celebrates the fantasy of what can be, rather than the reality of what is. That’s what builds nostalgia. That’s what drives imagination. That’s what DL is all about (for me at least 😉).
                                  Mike_M

                                  Disneyland Trips
                                  Walt Disney World
                                  Disneyland Paris

                                  1980, 1982, 1984, 1986, 1987, 1989
                                  1990, 1992, 1993

                                  2000, 2001, 2006, 2007, 2009
                                  2010, 2011, 2014, 2016, 2016, 2017, 2/2019, 11/2019
                                  2020

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by Mike_M View Post

                                    Current examples still in the park?
                                    --The Main Street fire station is a small museum of early firefighting equipment--including the chemical wagon;

                                    --There are great lessons on historic steam powered vehicles, from trains to steam boats;

                                    --The Columbia teaches many lessons about square-rigged ships, and even has a fun, and educational, display "below decks;"

                                    --Main Street is a veritable masterclass on Victorian architecture; Not to mention the lessons to be learned about gas lighting and Hotchkiss mountain guns.

                                    --Great local place to learn about petrified trees;

                                    --You can learn a great deal about the early flags of this country at the entrance to Frontierland;

                                    --New Orleans history is visible through its fire marks;

                                    --Those with open eyes can learn much about art, landscaping, woodwork; architecture; music and scene composition at the Park;

                                    --In large part, Disneyland also provides the jumping-off point for further inquiry. What are the little "crosses" on the walls Sleeping Beauty Castle? How tall is the real Matterhorn? What powers the Monorail?

                                    These are just a few examples. So...what lessons might there to be learned at Magic Mountain?

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Right Down Broadway

                                      I suppose I define things differently than you do.

                                      I see Edu-Tainment as being the main point of the attraction. Heavy handed attractions like Innoventions as a big business tech expo or Body Wars at EPCOT as a biology lesson masked as a flight sim are the easiest examples. These and other Education focused attractions are the kinds of experiences that I do not enjoy in the park. More often than not, they forget that the main goal is to be entertained, and for me, they never have.

                                      Experiencing those attractions for me, was like asking for a burger and french fries and instead being handed steamed beans and carrots because they’re healthier for you. Ugh

                                      What you described above I would instead describe as accurate and high quality attention to detail, which adds to the realism of the themes used. This is something I celebrate as well. Attention to detail is what sets Disney parks apart from other theme parks. and especially from amusement parks.

                                      I don’t consider that educational content though, especially since the lands throughout the park or not 100% accurate representations, but instead idealized impressions. all of the positive with none of the negative. That’s not history, that’s fantasy.

                                      That doesn’t mean that individuals can’t find a way to use that high quality theming to make an educational point. I just don’t think that’s Disney’s job to explicitly point out, and in all honesty they often miss the point when they do.
                                      Mike_M

                                      Disneyland Trips
                                      Walt Disney World
                                      Disneyland Paris

                                      1980, 1982, 1984, 1986, 1987, 1989
                                      1990, 1992, 1993

                                      2000, 2001, 2006, 2007, 2009
                                      2010, 2011, 2014, 2016, 2016, 2017, 2/2019, 11/2019
                                      2020

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        How do you explain that one of the most missed Yesterland attractions ever, was also the most heavily-handed edutainment attractions ever, by your definition: Adventure Thru Inner Space?

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