Minds in the Making

With our youngest citizens making is often mistaken for just playing, when in fact it’s an empowering and relevant learning process that positively impacts their lives. Dale Dougherty, publisher and editor of Make: Magazine states that “It doesn’t matter what you make, it’s the process of making that’s important.” When making is approached as a […]

Learning in Every Day Moments

As children observe the world around them, they are constantly absorbing new information. Daily life offers an abundance of opportunities for spontaneous learning experiences. Below are a few examples of daily occurrences you can use to teach the children in your life with no need for extra planning. In public places, take the opportunity to […]

Puffy Paint

The process of making and exploring Puffy Paint provides wonderful opportunities for tapping into children’s natural curiosity while enhancing their sense of wonder. Five ways to support a child’s sense of wonder: ONE – Before mixing the ingredients, allow time to explore the glue and shaving cream separately. Talk about what they feel like and what […]

Play Unplugged

As technology gives way to newer and greater forms of entertainment media, at the forefront of our minds should be how these advances affect the mind and body of those most vulnerable in our society: children. The American Academy of Pediatrics’ screen time guidelines, updated at the end of 2016, suggest that children under the […]

On Repeat

Does it ever feel like your child is stuck “on repeat”? He keeps doing the same activity over and over, whether it’s building a puzzle, singing a song, or drawing a tree. As an adult, you start getting bored and wonder: How is he still so excited and interested? It seems monotonous to an adult, […]

Material Exploration

Through their unique way of viewing the world, children can see potential in materials that may go unseen by adults. When given the time and space to explore a variety of materials children not only nurture their imagination but they cultivate their ability to express emotions and relate to those around them. This connection to […]

Curious Kids Club

Curiosity is a natural way of thinking for children. They readily question moments and experiences as they are happening. This eagerness to learning is something we encourage in our Curious Kids Club offerings. At the beginning of class, we open discussion about a topic by simply exploring it through questions. Children write down their questions […]

Fizzy Bubbles

Fizzy Bubbles is a simple science experiment combining the excitement of cause and effect with a sensory surprise. This experiment puts a fun twist on the common baking soda and vinegar reaction best known for making volcanoes. By adding a powdered drink mix such as Kool-Aid or Gatorade to the baking soda, as the reaction […]

Art Village

As the teacher preparing for an Exploring the Studio class, I reflected on how I could support children in discovering different ways to use art mediums while expressing their ideas and interests. I opened the class with the following provocation: “If you could create your own studio and be your own type of artist, what […]

Dream Dough

Dream dough is one of our go-to recipes at the Children’s Museum of South Dakota because of how easy it is to make and how fun it is to play with! The recipe we use only calls for two ingredients; however, feel free to add additional color with food coloring or glitter for sparkly dream […]