9. August 2012 10:30
Here on the Partnership blog we regularly illustrate how play is a critical pathway to learning for young children. Elements learned through play help build the foundation a child needs to enter school ready to learn. Through play, children are better able to understand and make sense of the world around them as they develop physical and mental skills including motor skills, creativity, imagination, thinking, and problem solving.
The Play to Learn exhibit at the Museum of Life and Science is a shining example of this theory in action. Designed with expert research and visitor input, the 1,500-square-foot play exhibit offers full body movement, fine motor skill development, creative play and experimentation for infants and children up to six years of age.
Exhibit activities at a glance
- Building Blocks. Build a bridge or tower out of blocks and develop mathematical skills along the way.
- Climbing Wall. Children develop gross motor skills and confidence in their physical abilities.
- Gentle Zone. Designed for infants and toddlers as an area of safe play that includes mirrors, textures, sounds, soft balls and blocks, sensory toys, and low climbing structures.
- Ball Tracks. Climb up a ladder and send balls racing down a zigzagged track to help introduce the concept of gravity to preschoolers!
- Paint with Water. Draw or write by brushing water onto a blackboard. The message/design disappears as the water evaporates.
- Imaginative Play Area. Kids can pretend to be vets, museum animal techs, ranchers, or farmers.
What a great space that encourages play as “the real work of childhood,” where children’s skills can flourish.