Let’s face it. Your typical 7th grader or high sc hool Senior has their head buried in a smartphone texting their friends. Getting them to stop and take notice of exhibits featuring freedoms delivered by the First Amendment isn’t exactly an easy one.
But we had a couple powerful things going for us when The McCormick Foundation approached ER2 Image Group (Formerly Bloomingdale Signs by Tomorrow) for help with this very challenge. For one, they had a 45-foot traveling museum called The Freedom Express, full of interactive exhibits and artifacts that promote discussion. As it travels to schools and community events throughout the Chicagoland area, what sets the museum apart besides its unique environment for learning (and that it is available at no charge to educators) is that many of its multimedia displays inside make the First Amendment relevant to events our kids can relate to today.
Secondly, we knew we were wrapping the entire passenger side of The Freedom Express in a cool design that felt very accessible to a younger audience that tends to think Bieber before Benjamin Franklin. As you can see from the imagery, the freedoms we enjoy affecting speech, religion, press and more are vibrantly displayed.
The 6th – 12th grade students who view this compelling design will see kids who look a lot like them, who are exchanging ideas and learning from one another. And in a special way, that makes something that was created hundreds of years ago in another time and place feel awfully fresh to a new generation here and now.