Sunday, July 14, 2013

Children's Museums

I like Children's Museums.  I like the other kind of museum as well, and have often lost myself in my desire to explore every nook and cranny of those venerable institutions.  But children don't really do well in those types of museums.  They aren't allowed to touch the 74,000,000 year old skeleton of a Pteranodon, for one thing.  Climbing the stuffed elephant in the lobby of the Smithsonian is also strictly forbidden, I've learned.  No touching, no climbing, and certainly no yelling and screaming in museums!  Not very fun for a little boy just itching to play with everything in his environment.

Children's Museums are different.  These places were made for kids.  Each exhibit was specifically built to allow exploration, touching, climbing, and even a little yelling. Just the sorts of behaviors my son loves!
I call this the Pringles Playtime, because I was hungry.
So when we get a chance to take Zane to a Children's Museum, we do.  There is one in downtown San Antonio, and one in New Braunfels, which is the one we visited today.  Every time we go to these places, I get a bit envious.  We didn't have these when I was a kid, and I know that I would have loved them. 

Who would have thought that kids would like to play with big blocks?  Since when do kids like to build things and act like the big adults they see in the world around them?

Or paint the latest masterpiece? At a 'real' museum, kids can look at the paintings, but they can't touch or even get up close.  Here, Zane can drive an ambulance, he can be a cashier at a grocery store and ring up some groceries, and he can pretend to camp out in a teepee. At the Children's Museum in San Antonio, he can play an old piano and walk inside the cockpit of an airplane.  Fun stuff!

And if Zane gets overstimulated by everything, he can take a break behind the nearest giraffe, at least until his mom hollers at him to get  the heck out of there.  I am glad that there are places like this for my son, and other kids, to explore their world safely through play.  I only wish they were around when I was a kid!

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