Inspired by the MoMS exhibition Water/Ways, three teens collaborating with staff at the Museum of the Grand Prairie in Mahomet, Illinois created a poignant video called “The Pollution of Our Waterways in Central Illinois.” They already possessed some technical experience podcasting but the Stories from Main Street project allowed them to expand their skills, learning about lighting, recording outside, and perhaps the trickiest lesson, how to research and conduct successful interviews with adults who have different backgrounds and expertise.
Museum of the Grand Prairie is located in the Lake of the Woods Forest Preserve in a beautiful natural setting where the value of conservation can be seen every day. As the SfMS project leader points out, “This was a timely exhibit so [the students’] project was about advocacy and the importance of your local waterways.”
The collaboration between the kids and the Museum was encouraged by a local teacher who hopes to continue similar projects in the future. The new equipment that the Museum purchased will help to bring more young people to work with them and improve oral history collection on a variety of topics important to people in the Mahomet area.