Creative Discovery Museum Wins Universal Design Award

Wednesday, April 26, 2006
Chris Petulla, Michah Hutcherson and Judy work on flowers, with volunteer Timothy Goode in foreground. Click to enlarge.
Chris Petulla, Michah Hutcherson and Judy work on flowers, with volunteer Timothy Goode in foreground. Click to enlarge.

The Association of Children’s Museums (ACM) and VSA Arts announced at their annual meeting in Boston that the Creative Discovery Museum of Chattanooga has won one of three national awards for exhibits and initiatives that demonstrate learning standards for inclusive practice.

Creative Discovery Museum is one of three museums nation-wide to receive the 2005 Universal Design for Learning Award. The award is a $15,000 grant to support programs that increase access to art and education through the arts for children with disabilities. Recipients must develop replicable models of their programs for application in other museums across the nation. Award winners were selected by an impartial committee of museum professionals.



“We are particularly proud of this award because it honors our staff, who celebrate the abilities of all children, and it recognizes our commitment to be as accessible as possible to all the families and children of our community,” said the museum’s executive director, Henry Schulson, who has headed the organization since June of 1997. He accepted the award at ACM’s annual InterActivity conference in Boston.

Club Discovery was developed in 2000 as an after school program for children with visual impairments and other disabilities. It is designed to engage children (both with and without special needs) in learning through creative exploration, through the guidance of Museum experts in the arts and sciences, and through museum exhibits.

The museum works to include children who might not otherwise participate in a museum experience or a school field trip. Museum experts engage Club Discovery members in activities that include team building and personal discovery, in an effort to help them grow as lifelong museum goers and volunteers. Club Discovery is designed for children with special needs, ages 8- to 12-years-old, and their typically developing peers. After age 12, Club Discovery graduates can move into CDM’s Museum Apprentice Program and become teen volunteers.

The museum feels it has achieved its goals when children with special needs learn to be comfortable and confident when they visit and explore any museum environment, officials said. After completing Club Discovery’s program, participating children receive a family membership to the museum. As members, children and their families continue to visit the museum and build on the educational foundation that was laid out during the program, it was stated.

Randy Jestice, assistant volunteer manager, and Joshua Wall work on collages for museum guests
Randy Jestice, assistant volunteer manager, and Joshua Wall work on collages for museum guests


Fire Survivor Meets Her Rescuers

A 45-year-old woman who was pulled from her burning home last September got to meet the people who rescued her on Saturday. Carrie Gann was critically injured when her house at 111 Centro Street was engulfed in flames early in the morning on September 20   "I wouldn't be alive today if it weren't for these men right here," said Ms. Gann, as she arrived ... (click for more)

Judge David Campbell DAR Presents Washington Portrait To Jasper Elementary

Judge David Campbell Chapter, TSDAR of Chattanooga, has donated a framed print of George Washington to Jasper Elementary School.  Member Nancy Larson, who serves on the Community Classroom Committee, presented Jasper students the founding father’s portrait.  Principal Kimberly Shurett stood with her students under Jasper’s decorated Christmas tree on Friday to ... (click for more)

Clerk Shot During Holdup At Lee Highway Convenience Store Early Saturday Morning

A clerk was shot during a holdup at a convenience store on Lee Highway early Saturday morning. Paul Evans, 24, has non-life threatening injuries. At approximately  12:56 a.m.  Chattanooga Police responded to a person shot call at the Mapco at 6200 Lee Highway.   Upon arrival, Chattanooga Police officers located the victim. He told police that a man armed ... (click for more)

Woman Shot Twice By Estranged Boyfriend In Front Of Multiple People At Her Home In Dalton

A woman's estranged boyfriend entered her residence in Dalton on Friday night and shot her twice in front of a group of people, authorities said. Heather Renee Griffin, 42, was transported to Hamilton Medical Center and later transferred to Erlanger Hospital in Chattanooga. Police are searching for Bertram Gerome Beck in the incident. At 7:35 p.m., the Whitfield County ... (click for more)

Connie McDade Enriched The Lives Of Hundreds Of Students

The message about Connie McDade was very touching. I was one of Connie's professors at UTC and thankfully she excelled anyway.  She was an enthusiastic educator, an exceptional person and generous individual.  She was a devoted teacher, loving wife, wonderful mentor and someone who will continue to bring joy to others beyond this life.   Future students ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Why Not Good People?

It makes no difference if you are a Republican or Democrat, liberal or conservative – I believe we will all come up short this Tuesday when Alabama announces the winner of a special election for a new Senator. On one hand you have Roy Moore, a controversial judge who has been bounced off the state’s Supreme Court twice, painted as a pedophile by numerous accusers, and just observed ... (click for more)