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 Building on the 2017 Docent Handbook 2, the National Docent Symposium Council has published Tours with Children and Teens: A Handbook for Docents and Guides. The new
publication enhances and deepens information and guidance for touring with children pre-K through high school, home schoolers and multi-aged groups, and those with special needs. Practical help and suggestions are enlivened with lots of examples from a variety of museums, and illustrated with color photographs.  The approaches presented throughout the handbook are equally relevant for in-person and virtual tours.

Co-authors Lindsay Noonan McAuliffe and Betsy Vourlekis (both from the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Asian Art, Freer and Sackler Galleries) and Jan Thorman (Walters Art Museum, Baltimore) have drawn on their own years of experience as docents, input from other docents and guides, and lots of research, to bring you this exciting and informative handbook.  We hope that it will inspire confidence and enjoyment for the important work of docents and guides with young visitors.

For more information or to purchase a printed or digital version, please click on the link in the sidebar or visit this page.  


Betsy Vourlekis Jan Thorman NDS 2019Lindsay McAuliffe NDS

In this 40th Ruby Anniversary year of NDSC we are highlighting the efforts of dedicated volunteers to bring best practices to our docent/guide community.

Betsy Vourlekis, Jan Thorman and Lindsay McAuliffe (pictured, left to right) are experienced docents who took on the task of researching and writing the new NDSC Handbook Touring with Children and Teens. Shelagh Barrington explains how the co-authors' combined backgrounds, extensive research, and input from other docents and guides  have resulted in a professional and engaging roadmap for docent/guides.

Read the full article here.

Docents are acutely aware that words, and how we choose to use them, are important to making visitors feel welcome and appreciated.  Read here how the docents at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco created a glossary of terms relevant to current cultural discourse and made it available to docents in an interactive platform.  

Be inspired by this and other resources in our Diversity and Inclusion section.  

The Nevada Museum of Art currently has an exhibition of works by Jean LaMarr, a native American artist. Museum docents and staff felt it was important when presenting her art to learn the story of the local Stewart Indian residential school, one of over 500 Indian residential schools operational in the US from 1890 to about 1980.  Docents Betsy Burgess and Linda Miller relate how the experience assisted docents to better understand contemporary issues in Native American art.  Read here.  

Gin Wachter SM NDSC Cheryl Palmer  Renee Franklin  Wadsworth Atheneum 1

We are proud to recognize our supporters by profiling the individuals and institutions that inspire them.  From left to right, Gin Wachter (Saint Louis Art Museum); Cheryl Palmer (The Mint Museum); RenĂ©e Brummel Franklin (Saint Louis Art Museum); and Wadsworth Atheneum Docent Council 50th Anniversary.  

The Docent Handbook 2 

Now available in two versions, digital and print.

For more information and ordering instructions, click this LINK.

Be a Resource!  We welcome articles for publication on the NDSC website. 


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