The average family doesn’t have a powerful microscope at the kitchen table or a walk-in kaleidoscope in the backyard.
Lucky for us, the best science museums make such world-class resources available to the public, as well as educators who know how to break down abstract concepts in a way anyone (even parents) can understand.
Here are ten must-see science museums in cities across the United States:
Boston Science Museum
Imagine a child standing still, looking at a precisely tuned craft in perpetual motion. The giant Rube Goldberg Machine filled with colorful billiard balls is a centerpiece of this famous western museum Boston. It has a large wing dedicated to the science of engineering, engaging visitors in key innovation problem-solving activities.
San Francisco offers “the museum of science, art and human perception”. Check in advance for reservations for the famous âTouch Dome,â an all-black exhibit in which visitors must âseeâ with the sense of touch (it’s busiest during the summer months). Take time for the “DISTURBSâExhibits – exploring the cognitive sciences of emotion, perception, learning and communication – and a stop at the toilet bowl water fountain.
Minnesota Science Museum
St. PaulThe innovative museum of is built on cliffs overlooking the Mississippi River. The river flows just outside its windows, past ten acres of outdoor exhibits and programming space. Family favorites: nine holes of mini-golf exploring changing landscapes, a Dinosaur and fossil gallery (with a Diplodocus skeleton discovered by high school students) and hands-on activities in the Experiment Gallery.
National Air and Space Museum
The Smithsonian Institution’s most visited museum houses the Wright 1903 ProspectusWright 1903 Prospectus, the Spirit of Saint-Louis, and the moon rock that you can touch. A second installation is just outside Washington DC: the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center display the Enola Gay and one Lockheed Blackbird.
Getting started! Regional museum
This small museum of Johnson City, Tennessee, is scaled especially for the interests and abilities of children. Kids love to turn on a flashing light on a police motorcycle, play giant chimes, create huge bubbles and conduct real experiments in the Eastman Discover Lab.
Place of discovery
Rat basketball is one of the most popular activities in CharlotteThe fun science museum of, featuring great information on the science of the brain involved in learning new skills. A satellite installation for very young children is located nearby Huntersville, North Carolina.
Museum of Science and Industry
This famous Chicago The museum’s mission is to âinspire inventive genius in everyoneâ. Experience the programmed six-foot floating globe with ever-changing images of actual Earth weather conditions, ocean currents, and geological forces at work. The “NetmondeâAllows you to create a digital image of yourself and explore the inner workings of the Internet.
Fort Worth Science and History Museum
From a replica of a dinosaur dig site to exhibits about the importance of the cattle industry, this Texas museum hosts a range of hands-on educational exhibits related to science and energy. Truly five museums united under one large roof, highlights here include the Fort Worth Children’s Museum, a place where children under eight can take an interest in the world, as well as an on-site planetarium and IMAX theater.
The Franklin Institute
Save an entire day to explore this renowned museum in Philadelphia Cream. For young children, the “KidScience“The exhibit is a particularly memorable experience – an introduction to the basics of science through storytelling, fictional characters and a gripping superhero painting.”Sir Isaac’s loftâCombines art and physics with compelling practical experimentation.
Museum of Innovation Technology
Be a Silicon Valley inventor for a day at this museum of San jose, california. Discover the âvirtual test areaâ, where real-life science is illustrated using virtual world technology. Enter the mind of a painter or explore a scene that shows how digital music works. The temporary exhibitions are created by leaders and innovators in digital imaging.
This piece was adapted from the National Geographic book, The 10 best of everything: families.