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PBL10 Presents the Museum of Illusions

display table(May 31, 2024) PBL10 created a Museum of Illusions for its second major project and exhibition of the year earlier this week in the Little Theatre. The class visited Philadelphia's Museum of Illusions as the project kickoff and to inspire students for their future project. The essential question was, "Is it real?" Students used their illusion to present factual concepts such as atomic structure, explored how perspective can change a person's "reality" of historical events, and more. In the end, it was up to the individual to determine the answer to the question, “Is it real?” They explored this question in the following ways:

World History: History explored multiple perspectives of historical events.  Students researched events, like the attack on Pearl Harbor, from the American and Japanese perspectives. After completing the research, students created a deep fake video that explained an overview of the historical event. They then had two different viewmaster photo discs created that could be used with their viewmasters. Museum visitors were able to learn about the historical event through the videos and viewmasters.  

Chemistry:  Factual concepts were presented through various illusions. There was a section on historical chemists, their lives, and contributions to science where the deliverable was to create a holographic 3D "floating chemist" using videos and prisms. In atomic structure, atoms were created via 3D anamorphic art. Atoms were created using styrofoam balls, then distorted and placed on a rotating stand.  For a brief moment as it spun, the atom came together, then distorted again.  Holographic chemistry puzzles or various shapes were created to showcase concepts of nomenclature, physical and chemical properties, bonding, history, and more.

English: Students explored the idea that everyone has parts of themselves  that we show the world, and parts of that are hidden. Students read the poem "We Wear the Mask" by Paul Laurence Dunbar as a jumping off point to explore this topic, then studied personal narratives. Students ended up creating two products for the English component of the project; a mask and a personal narrative. The masks displayed characteristics that the students share with the world in normal paint or ink. They then used invisible ink to write the things about themselves that they hide from others. Visitors used blacklight flashlights to reveal the hidden characteristics on the masks. The personal narratives were then published in a literary magazine - some were printed but it was also accessible through a QR code that was posted. Below is a link to the PDF/digital copy of the literary magazine.  The personal narrative writing process included an editing and review session that PBL11 and PBL12 students attended to give feedback.

Optical Illusions: Students also created some general optical illusions, many of which were inspired by the trip to the Philadelphia Museum of Illusions. They created a "Head on a platter," a double mirror, a virtual reality station, ambigrams, and more. 

Behind the mask personal narratives>> 

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