Integrating math and science into playtime is important to our family. We’ve found that The Exploratorium, a museum of science, art, and human perception here in San Francisco, is a perfect place for children to explore and have fun while learning important math and science concepts that aren’t as easily taught at home.
Upon walking into the Exploratorium’s darkened building you realize that it’s a place full of thought provoking gadgets with lights, sounds, colors, textures, levers, buttons and shapes – a preschoolers heaven. Immediately you see children of all ages (including adults!) busy in active investigation of the exhibits. The place is simply fascinating, no matter how old you are or how many times you visit.
The Exploratorium is more than just explore-for-yourself exhibits though, the museum staff reach out to and partner with educational institutions in the local area and around the world. For example, their “Arp Forms” exhibit of vibrating corn starch and water was built in partnership with the University of Chicago’s Material Research Science and Engineering Center.
The Exploratorium also has a theatre, classrooms, and life science demos that everyone can watch and participate in. What I love most about the Exploratorium is that artists are included in the development process of the exhibits, so each and every explorers experience is unique.
You don’t have to travel to San Francisco to experience the Exploratorium though – you can check out their exhibits online, watch exhibit demo videos and even learn how to dissect a cow’s eye for yourself, right in your own home! The dissection really isn’t as disgusting as it looks.
Here’s some of the Exploratorium exhibits we encountered along our way…
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