Young learners can explore the subjects of art, history, science, archaeology, and more through children’s museums that offer a virtual window into real-time curiosities via webcams, live streams, computer-generated tours, and 360-degree photographs. (By the way, for adults, plenty of world-class art museums have created similar virtual offerings.)
Glazer Children’s Museum
Creating life-long learners has always been the goal at Tampa, Florida’s Glazer Children’s Museum. While kids are e-learning at home, due to school closures, Glazer Children’s Museum is here to help. Make a Rube Goldberg Machine, learn about atmospheric pressure through hands-on experiments, and participate in coloring activities, all from the comfort of your own home.
Good to Know: The museum has launched GCM at Home, an online initiative to assist caregivers and parents with educational learning activities.
Children’s Museum of South Dakota
Kids across the country will have to spend time learning—and playing—indoors so many museums, like the Children’s Museum of South Dakota, have developed curriculum, webinars, and blogs for at-home studying. Seize the Play invites kids to pick a topic and then complete the challenge. There are many activities to choose from like making puffy paint, creating fizzy bubbles, baking prairie breads, building an indoor fort, paper making, and more.
Good to Know: There’s a special page just for grown-ups where parents can gain access to extra resources like reviews, activity suggestions, and more.
Boston’s Children Museum
Founded by science teachers in 1913, Boston’s Children Museum has been working with educators since the beginning. The museum offers free online resources to help students learn, like the 100 Ways to Play suggestions, which give parents and caregivers ideas for how to help kids engage in the world around them.
Good to Know: Boston’s Children Museum has a virtual tour that allows kids to click on arrows to explore the museum.
The Strong National Museum of Play
Even though The Strong National Museum of Play in Rochester, New York is closed, you can still visit virtually through an online tour of the first and second floors. Click arrows and make your way through the various exhibits and galleries. Learn by exploring online exhibits: Pinball in America, History of Play on Two Wheels, The Oregon Trail, American Board and Card Game History, and The History of Valentine Cards.
Good to Know: Google Arts and Culture makes it easy to see the interior and exterior of The Strong National Museum of Play.
Kohl Children’s Museum
You'll be able to access remote learning opportunities through Kohl Children’s Museum’s Home Zone. Each web series will walk you through science experiments, art projects, music classes, and more, all of which you can complete while at home. Learn how to make a work of art with a fly swatter tool, create a ball-run with recycled or up-cycled materials, and learn how different materials absorb water.
Good to Know: Visit the museum’s website regularly to see new videos and to keep informed on good health and wellbeing practices while at home.
Children’s Museum of Houston
Several virtual events are available for children through the Children’s Museum of Houston website. During the time of school closures, families can take part in virtual story-times (English and bilingual), toddler playtime, and more. Mr. O’s O Wow Moments, for example, walks kids through science experiments that they can complete at home. Educator Moments give kids structure for activities they can do with caregivers via Facebook Live.
Good to Know: Visit the museum’s website for a list of virtual events.
Minnesota Children’s Museum
The Minnesota Children’s Museum has a huge library of videos that families can watch while at home. Kids can learn how to build a gnome home, create a time capsule, learn about the color wheel through mixing primary paint colors, and create sensory bins. Even though the museum is closed through the month, you can still visit the website and learn about the various exhibits and read helpful blogs on activities to do home.
Good to Know: The museum helps parents by providing educational resources that can be accessed while home from school. Read research on the science of play, get helpful tips, and stay informed by subscribing to a newsletter.
Chicago Children’s Museum
For artsy kids that want to learn how to make stained glass, colored foam, play dough, finger puppets, and more, take a gander at Chicago Children’s Museum’s list of Recipes for Play at Home. Activities are arranged by age groups and you’ll find plenty to keep your little ones engaged.
Good to Know: The Chicago Children’s Museum has a Facebook page that has up-to-date information on new at-home activities as well as tips for keeping kids busy while at home.
Pretend City Children’s Museum
Irvine, California is home to Pretend City Children’s Museum, which features 17 interactive exhibits designed to promote active imaginations in kids. Through the Matterport 3D Space, kids can virtually walk through the cafe, farm, gas station, post office, grocery store, and more.
Good to Know: Take a virtual tour, provided by HistoryView VR of the museum’s Mini Mall, Classrooms, Pretend City Entrance, Seasonal Area, and Street Entrance.
The National Museum of Australia
It can be fun for kids, no matter where they live around the globe, to visit museums in different countries via the web. The National Museum of Australia has online activities for fun at home. Instructional web pages teach kids how to make animated flip books, dragon puppets, robots, wearable art, stick art sculptures, and more.
Good to Know: Take a self-guided tour with the app, The Loop. You can also download the Defining Moments and Museum Favourites audio tours.