InterActivity 2024: Flourish!

May 15-17, 2024
Hosted in partnership with
Madison Children’s Museum
Madison, WI

About the Theme

ACM and Madison Childrens Museum invite you to InterActivity 2024: Flourish! Childrens museums have a unique opportunity to reimagine and create a positive future. By radically flourishing in an everchanging society and environment we can reestablish our sense of interconnection, use language and actions to frame the positive, and help our communities thrive.

InterActivity 2024 will explore how the field can ensure that every child prospers and becomes their best self, which in turn creates a more caring, compassionate, inclusive, and sustainable global community.

Helping children, families, and communities flourish is what we do in childrens museums every day. Every visitor brings their lived experience into our space. They carry the seeds of happiness and wellbeing that lives within them. Childrens museums exist to provide the right environment, nurturing atmosphere, and care for them to thrive and to flourish.

The deadline to submit a session proposal has passed. Thank you to all who submitted a proposal. Watch for the program coming soon.

Here are some questions to consider as you develop your proposal to the theme:

• How innovative programs and exhibits that foster flourishing growth in children be developed?
• What strategies can be employed to build partnerships and collaborations to promote flourishing?
• What are effective practices for fostering inclusion and equity in children’s museum programs and exhibits?
• How can we use language and actions to frame the positive in museum experiences for children?
• What is the importance of interconnection and community building in children’s museums?
• What strategies can be used to evaluate the impact of museum programs and exhibits on children’s flourishing outcomes?
• What role can museums play in promoting a sustainable future for children and communities?
• How can museums ensure they flourish in an ever-changing environment?

Session proposals will be considered for one of the many Concurrent Professional Development Sessions that make up a large part of the InterActivity program. These sessions may be scheduled on either Thursday, May 16 or Friday, May 17.

• All sessions are 75-minutes. If you are proposing a double session, indicate this in your title (e.g., Parts 1 and 2) and in the session plan. You may want to submit separate forms for part one and part two.
• Sessions have a maximum of one moderator and four presenters. The session chair must participate in the session.
• Presenters/moderators may not participate in more than two InterActivity sessions. See more about presenters below.

Trust us. Our reading of many session evaluations allows us to offer these suggestions as you develop a proposal:
o Pre-write your proposal. Download the Session Proposal Form (non-fillable) and
use it as a guide before you start the online proposal form.
Be mindful of how much content can be delivered in 75 minutes. Be realistic about the number of presenters and how much time activities take.
Your session will provide professional development for attendees. No show-and-tell, instead include how you did what you did and how attendees can apply the information you present at their institutions.
Plan your session so that attendees will be actively engaged rather than passively receiving information.
Include multiple perspectives: presenters from small, medium, and large museums, from different job areas, from both inside and outside the museum field, etc. Use the What Size is Your Children’s Museum matrix so ensure presenters come from different size museums.
Reach out to others through the InterActivity Session Ideas Exchange Groupsite. Get feedback on your ideas and recruit presenters. Open to all, though you may need to set up a new account. Need help with setting up an account? Email
Watch the Session Proposal Writing Webinar recording from June 7th and review the slide deck.

Need assistance? Email Victoria Garvin, Sr. Director, Professional Development.

The success of an InterActivity session is the result of careful planning, communication, collaboration, and cooperation. The session chair leads these efforts. Session chairs agree to fulfill the following responsibilities:

Secure and confirm session presenters:
Gets confirmation from each presenter that his/her institution supports participation, including funding for registration and travel.
Advises presenters that they are responsible for registering themselves by the Early Bird Deadline. ACM does not give complimentary registration, honoraria, or pay travel expenses to presenters at InterActivity. Note: presenters from outside the museum field, e.g., academics, non-museum service organizations, may be eligible for a complimentary one-day registration at the discretion of ACM.
Advises presenters that they may not use the session to promote products or services of any kind.
Advises presenters that they will be required to complete and return a Session Presenter Agreement.
Advises presenters that if the proposal is accepted, they must be available to present on either day of the conference, May 16 or 17, and that they may not participate in more than two InterActivity sessions.

Plan the session from start to delivery at InterActivity 2024:
• Meet all deadlines set by ACM.
Maintain timely communication with presenters, ACM, and Program Committee “shepherd” who will be assigned to the session upon acceptance.
• Rehearse the session with all presenters in advance of delivery at InterActivity.
• Ensure development of useful handouts for distribution onsite and for posting to the ACM website after the conference.
• Review all session presentations and handouts in advance of the conference to ensure quality and consistency.
• Collect all presentation materials and handouts and uploads them to the ACM Box folder by Friday, June 14, 2024.

Note: failure to meet these obligations will jeopardize acceptance of future session proposals.
Session chairs agree to these responsibilities when they complete the Session Proposal form

Proposals submitted by July 31, 2023 will be reviewed by the InterActivity 2024 Program Committee and evaluated according to the following criteria:

1. The proposed session conveys innovative strategies, take-home tools, scalable practices, or new research and its application. Content may support the theme a.nd/or provide nuts and bolts training.
2. The proposal’s learning objectives are realistic and achievable.
3. The session plan outlines a clear picture of what attendees can expect during the session: who will speak on what topic and for how long, how attendees will participate, and what attendees can expect to take away.
4. Proposal describes useful handouts for distribution to attendees onsite and for posting to the ACM website after the conference.
5. Presenters are confirmed and provide diverse perspectives on the topic (i.e., representing museums of all sizes, not different departments in the same museum). See What Size is Your Museum. Proposals with content experts from outside the children’s museum field will receive extra consideration as will proposals for small museums.

All session proposals for InterActivity 2024 must be submitted through the online SurveyMonkey form. Only completed proposals will be reviewed. Note: once a proposal is started in SurveyMonkey it needs to be completed—you many not be able to go back in and finish or change it at a later date. We strongly suggest you pre-write the proposal before entering the text in the form.

June 7: Session Proposal Webinar
July 31: Session Proposals Due
September 6-7: InterActivity 2024 Program Committee Meeting
October 13: Decision Notices Sent to Session Chairs