In the past several weeks, I've gone to four+ museums, and I have some random observations.
I don't like being in crowds. I especially don't like being in crowds when people are running into my shins with their SUV style baby carriages or strollers. Seriously, folks, that stroller takes up the space of two or three adults, easily. If you must bring it, don't run it against people, and don't place it parallel to the display so no one else can get close.
This will make me unpopular in some circles, but children don't belong everywhere. There, I've said it. If it's going to take two or more hours to get through a non-child-friendly exhibit, and your kid spends most of that crying in the stroller, you might want to think about moving out of the traffic pattern a bit, picking the kid up, and comforting him/her in some way. Maybe get a babysitter and leave the kid at home? (No, this isn't a poverty thing; the tickets to one exhibit were $20+ dollars; if you couldn't afford a babysitter, you probably weren't spending $20+ for the tickets, plus parking, transport, etc.)
That said, the children's interactive parts of some museums are really appealing. But I hate when parts don't work! (Because, yes, I tend to try them!)
I like good descriptive exhibits. I like to know which way's north on maps and landscapes that represent the area. I like to know how bits of machinery fit with the larger picture, and so forth. I saw some displays at a cheesy local little town museum that oriented me really well to how the stuff worked in the old Northwoods; as a result, I learned something about local lumbering practices. I saw displays at a national travelling exhibit that didn't do nearly as well; as a result, I didn't learn as much as I might have.
I love museums that prompt visitors to think about the museum's own constructions of narrative and display. It seems that more and more museums are helping visitors become better museum "readers."
I'm alternately fascinated and irritated at the ways some displays assume gender and race.
Best of all, I got an Einstein action figure!
I wonder if they make a Shakespeare action figure? Or character ones? A Hamlet (in)action figure? If you had one for Titus, you could have a removeable hand and such!