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Eau Claire Children's Museum Signage

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  • Eau Claire Children's Museum Signage
    Theme: "Under the Wisconsin Sky"
  • Task was to create a signage language that directs families and children through the second floor of the Eau Claire, WI Children's Museum. The theme is "Under the Wisconsin Sky", or more simply put: camping.

        The theme of “Under the Wisconsin Sky” presents some fun problems. First, how does one create a realistic camping experience indoors? Second, as far as signage goes, what is the best way to display words and directions that will benefit and interest a child? And third, how does this particular exhibit pair the aspects of learning and fun in the realm of signage?
        My own experiences of camping from a very young age became my main inspiration. This project is also so very relevant to Wisconsin, which is very exciting. As children experience this exhibit the goal is that they will utilize what they see and learn here and take it outdoors with them. The signage directly relates to nearly all signage within the state.
    While sticking with the vintage, wooden feel these signs also offer a refreshing childlike spirit. With a simple four color system and two altering fonts the signs remain simple and primarily text based (although icons could be created and implemented easily).
  • The idea with the entry sign is that all of the nature is contained behind this fence; that once you step beyond the fence you are no longer in a building. The signs themselves are meant to resemble the rather vintage current signs of Wisconsin parks. As these children exit the Eau Claire Children’s Museum, the hope is that they will be able to recognize existing park signs throughout the state from seeing these. “Happy Camper” is only a suggested name for the park and would be put on the sign as 3D wooden letters (as would “State Park”). At the entrance is also a station to grab a “State Parks” sticker, because most state parks/campgrounds have a sticker system.
  • Sticker that would be handed out to children & visitors who enter the "park area".
  • The signs (and fence) would be made from wood. Details and lettering could be 3D, screen printed on, or hand painted.  The larger “Wisconsin: State Parks” sign offers itself as a landmark and even a picture point for children and families. 
    All other signs are based off of this main park sign.
  • This low map table gets children involved with the driving aspect that comes in to play often times with camping. The wooden table has a map printed/painted directly on the top with tent symbols marking where campgrounds would be in Wisconsin. The roads, or paths, that the cars travel on are slots cut into the table. The cars will then have a small piece connected to the bottom of them that fits right into that slot. The cars would be able to move on the road with ease. Because not all paths lead to all campgrounds, part of the fun is finding the easiest or shortest route.
    More cars could be added as well as taken away as needed.
  • All other signs that would be implemented into the space would emulate the original entryway sign. The “Fire Danger” sign is a very familiar sign for most parks. This particular sign could be changed daily, allowing for it to be current with the weather in the areas of the museum. The plaques would just Velcro on and off as necessary allowing for quick modification to the “Fire Danger”. The way finding signage would be placed at decision point areas, where people would have the choice on which station they go to, or if they were looking for a particular areas of the exhibit.
  • The idea behind this panel of boards is matching up Wisconsin animal noises with the animals themselves. Four stations are shown here, each with the same animals but in different sequences (so no two match up exactly the same way). Because there are no headphones small speakers are in each board. This allows the children to participate in these activities together or individually and gives the rest of the area some wildlife background noises as well.
  • With the push of a blank button an animal sound would play. The child would be able to think about what animal makes that noise and then push the animal button to be sure that they are correct! Tree stumps (plush or real) are placed at the stations for either climbing or sitting. There would be an attachment for headphones on these boards as well.