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Guest Post: Making the Most of Museums

January 30th, 2017

3 Ways Museums Can Foster a Love of Learning Among Children

The word “museum” conjures quiet images of dusty manuscripts, poorly stuffed lions, and maybe even a dinosaur skeleton or two. While these things may be found in many museums, modern times have drawn museums from stuffy to colorful, advanced, and exciting. The displays are often kid-friendly, catering to field trips and instructors. However, by bringing your children to museums before their formal education begins, you may be giving them a leg-up. Here are a few of the ways museums can teach your kids to love learning:

1. There’s an App for That

Most museums in the modern age boast apps that act as virtual tour guides through the museum. These apps might have additional information on each exhibit, supplemental resources to learn more about the exhibits, or fun little games to play to include younger children. In fact, some apps will even allow you to take a virtual tour of a museum without leaving your home.

By using these supplemental apps, you make the process of learning about the exhibits an exciting, interactive adventure. Your kids will be thrilled to be allowed to hold your phone or table and wander through the museum, accessing information on their own.

2. Hands-On Learning for Exhibits and Classes

Most children and even adults find lecture-based learning dull. And while there are a many fun and creative ways to make learning engaging for kids, nothing quite beats hands-on learning experience offered by visiting a museum.

For example, many museums that incorporate dinosaurs will include a sandbox that allows children to dig for fossils. What could be better than spending an afternoon pretending to be an archaeologist, complete with rocks, dirt, and all the tools of the trade? A museum volunteer may even bring out a real fossil for children to view up close.

This sort of learning teaches children that education does not have to mean sitting quietly, listening to an adult talk about a topic for an hour or more. They will begin to associate their impending education with exciting, hands-on activities that will allow them to get up close and personal with a variety of topics that interest them. In fact, adults may learn a thing or two about educating kids through a trip to the museum.

3. Kids Get to See Parents Enjoying Education

Kids want to emulate the adults in their lives, and taking a family trip to a museum will allow your children to witness adults learning and having fun at the same time. Museums are fascinating for people of all ages, making them an ideal opportunity for learning by example. Furthermore, museums house all kinds of information. Whether you spend a day learning about art history or the evolution of humanity, your kids will find themselves exposed to new and exciting information that piques not only their interest but their parents’ as well.

It is never too early to teach your kids how fun learning can be. If you teach your children that museums are an exciting treat, they will learn that education is fun. Furthermore, museums of all kinds make for fun, wholesome family outings that engage all ages. Everybody loves learning new things, particularly when you get an up-close or hands-on experience. If you find it difficult to get everyone out of the house, you might consider downloading a museum app and allowing your kids to take a virtual tour of a famous museum. In the modern age, the possibilities are endless.

Image via Pixabay by Unsplash

Post from Jamie at scicamps.org

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Fermilab Open House

January 24th, 2016

Family Open House

(from their website)

Join us for an afternoon of science fun.

The Fermilab Family Open House is a party for children of all ages to learn about the world of physics.

Watch video on YouTube of a previous event. Watch the calendar for the next one! The Open House is co-supported by Fermilab Friends for Science Education and the Education Office.

  • Watch Mr. Freeze’s fabulous cryogenics show!
  • Tour the universe!
  • Explore physics concepts with hands-on activities!
  • Ask a scientist your physics questions!
  • Take a tour, and more!

When: January 31, 2016, 1:00 to 5:00 PM.

Audience: The Open House is most appropriate for children in grades 3 and up. Children must be accompanied.

Registration (Tours only): The event and tours are free. Registration is only needed for the tours. The minimum age for Linac tours is 10 and for the Neutrino Horn Production Site and Muon g-2 tours is 14. No exceptions. Go to the Registration Page to sign up for a tour.

Contact: Maureen Hix, Lederman Science Center, Education Office
P.O. Box 777, Batavia, IL 60510-0500
(630) 840-5588, edreg@fnal.gov

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Teacher appreciation at Barnes and Noble

September 29th, 2015

Received via email:

As our Barnes & Noble Educator Appreciation Days
approach (Oct 10-18), I wanted to take a moment to let you know that
Barnes & Noble Webster Place offers Homeschooling parents a 20%
discount on most book purchases made for the homeschool classroom year
round through our Educator Discount Card program. And, during Educator
Appreciation Days, the discount increases to 25%!

We have made applying for the Barnes & Noble Educator Discount Card
easy for homeschooling parents – they can apply by simply identifying
themselves as parents who homeschool their children and completing the
Educator Discount Card application here at the store. No letters or
other information is required for homeschooling parents to participate
in this discount program.

Check this out at the Chicago location at 1441 West Webster Avenue.

You could also follow up with other local Barnes and Noble stores if this is not convenient.

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SELAH meet and greet

September 28th, 2015

Christian Life Center in Tinley Park is sponsoring
a Homeschool Support Group and their first “Meet-n-Greet” is the first
step in offering a central support group in the Chicago south suburbs.
Join us as we discuss the needs of our south side homeschoolers: i.e.
curriculum fairs & teacher workshops, student science and history
fairs, family movie nights, performance platforms (fine arts, poetry
slams, modest fashion show, etc.), family banquet and dance, and end
of year graduation service.

Open to all families that practice homeschooling or are interested in
finding out more about it! They will meet the first Friday of each
month throughout the school year for a family activity and the third
Tuesday of each month for a “Mom’s Night Out.” (No meetings in
December.)

First meeting this Friday, October 2nd at Christian Life Center, 6363
W. 183rd Street, Tinley Park, Illinois, 60477. Visit
selah-enrichment.org/support-group or contact
gwendolyn.bielicki@gmail.com for more information!

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Memorial Day events

May 25th, 2015

It’s not too late to add some meaning to your Memorial Day.

Here are some links to local events, and hopefully things will clear up for your afternoon BBQ and picnic plans:

Many ceremonies throughout the area

Cantigny concert

Various Chicago area events, some of these were Saturday/Sunday (like the big Chicago Memorial Day Parade), but there are some ideas you might like to add to your day “off”

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April 21st, 2015

Received via email:

Hi Friends,

Thought I would personally send you the upcoming dates and flyers for the My Father’s World expos in Illinois. Registration is free on mfwbooks.com, (under events tab) so it is a great way for homeschool families, or those considering homeschooling, to have an opportunity to browse materials in a more relaxed setting.  They are all open house style from 11-3.

Peoria is Thursday, April 30th at the Embassy Suites
Naperville is Friday, May 1st at the Marriot by 88 and Naperville Rd.
Crystal Lake is Saturday, May 2nd at the Holiday Inn on Rt.31

Please pass along to any groups or families that may have an interest.  All of the teacher’s manuals, curriculum sets, as well as math and science books will be set up on display.  Doug and I are not sure yet if we will be joining the team for the Illnois events this year, but all of the travel teams are super helpful in answering questions!

Happy Spring,
Love,
Kristin

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GIFT in Elgin is waiving their registration fee for this month!

December 16th, 2014

G.I.F.T. – Quality Fine Arts Classes for Homeschoolers

Godly Influenced Fine Arts Training – Established 2001

GIFT says their registration fee will be waived for new families enrolling in December 2014 for second semester starting in 2015.

Take advantage of this soon if you are interested. You can find all their information at the website, GIFThomeschool, http://www.gifthomeschool.org/.

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Swap Shop coming to Elburn

October 30th, 2014

1 John 3:16-18

By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers.

But if anyone has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him?

Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.

Location: Elburn Community Center Gym,
525 N. Main Street,
Elburn, Illinois

Dates & Times
Drop off – Nov. 7, 10 am – 7 pm
Swap – Nov. 8, 9 am – 3 pm

Open to ALL!!

What is a Swap Shop ?

Swap Shop is a chance for moms to swap out things they no longer need for things they do. If you wouldn’t be ashamed to give it to a friend, then we’ll accept it.

All items not swapped will be donated to charity.

Nothing to swap? Please come anyway and be blessed with God’s provision.

Who organizes the Swap Shop ?

This event is hosted by Authentic Moms, a local Christian mom’s group.

Our desire is to follow 1 John 3:16-18

- to love with actions & truth, not just words.

Would you like to volunteer for a chance to pre-shop?

Or do you have other questions? Contact – authenticmoms@gmail.com

Items we swap include:
- Baby items
- Gently used clothes & shoes
- Children’s Toys
- Furniture
- Books, Games & School Supplies
- Household & Kitchen Accessories
ALL Items are for SWAP, not SALE

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Online Math Help

June 2nd, 2014

Received via email:

Perfect Summer Math!  Perfect After-School Math
Our math materials are perfect for both summer and after-school programs.
Many of our titles come with free online video tutorials.
One tutorial for each lesson in the book.
Check us out at
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________
We also have a new online math program for grades 4 through Algebra.
It comes complete with videos, written exercises, quizzes, certificates
of completion, games & prizes,  and much more.  A dashboard tracks progress
for parents and students.
Try it free!
Have a great summer!
Don’t keep us a secret.  Tell your friends and colleagues about our award-winning math materials.
Best,
Rick Fisher
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Swap Shop in just a few weeks!

October 29th, 2013

In just a few short weeks one of my favorite events, a double blessing — a place to donate our unneeded items and a place to find items we need all for free. My kids even do some of their Christmas “shopping” for each other at this event. :)

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