Here at the Staten Island Children’s Museum, you don’t look at exhibits you play and interact with them. Build a house, perform a show, make light dance, send a video postcard, run a conveyor belt, make music, captain a ship, fish for oysters, and climb a rock wall. It all happens here!
Newly refurbished Block Harbor is a must-see exhibit for young explorers. Our pirate ship is ready to set sail for destinations as far as your imagination will go! Cross over the bridge and be a lookout on the upper deck, ring the bell, navigate the wheel, or cook in the galley. When your voyage at sea is complete, come back to land and construct your own city with some of the giant building blocks. A special port destination to visit at Block Harbor is Judy’s Book Nook, a cozy place to wind down with a good story or puzzles.
One of our most popular exhibits! Play with life-sized Chess pieces, giant Dominoes, Bowling, Checkers, Connect Four, and Lite Brite. Build your own log cabin with our unique wooden Builder-Boards. Filled with natural sunlight, Big Games offers fun, exercise and some strategic thinking all rolled into one!
Bugs & Other Arthropods
Calling all budding entomologists – see bugs and other arthropods up close, crawl through a human-size ant hill, try on an exoskeleton and hear from our insect orchestra! Our live arthropod collection houses a variety of specimens from all over the world, including giant millipedes from Africa and tarantulas from Brazil. Age-appropriate displays and games show children about insect camouflage, hibernation, life cycles, and more. Maybe bugs and other arthropods are not so scary after all!
Step outside to our Garden Terrace, where nature abounds! See how composting works, check out some bugs, play with the “natural” musical instruments, or just take a quiet break. See what nature teaches us, “paint” with water, create music to compliment the hum of the insects, experiment with sorting and with the properties of weight and gravity. This outdoor patio space helps visitors to be inspired by nature and all she offers.
Ready for a worldwide adventure right here in the Museum? Explore a rainforest canopy and cave, take a raft across a river, drive a dogsled in the tundra, walk on snow shoes, or dive to the ocean floor. You can also host a show at the WEXP radio station exhibit which highlights the historical importance of radio communication in exploring.
House About It
The two-story unfinished house lets kids see behind its walls to find studs, pipes and electrical systems. This popular exhibit also highlights the people that build houses and communities, including architects and construction workers. Try knocking over the bricks with the wrecking ball, use the tool bench, and ride up & down on the big “level,” which is actually a see-saw! Our newest components are a crane and conveyor belt which encourage teamwork and a slide down from the top floor of the framed out building.
Share your story and tell us about your visit to the Children’s Museum! Take a seat, use the touchscreen and make a movie starring you.
Pretend you’re a firefighter – ring the bell, slide down the pole, try on the gear, listen for a call on the radio, manipulate the gauges, hook up a hose and jump aboard our authentic 1941 Seagrave fire truck, retrofitted for hands-on play and learning.
Pets & People
We love our animals! Make sure they stay healthy and strong. Put on your white lab coat and become a veterinarian to give our animal friends a checkup using stethoscopes, scales, and medical charts.
Take the stage in our authentic theatre with plenty of costumes to help young thespians pretend. Kids can put on skits using props and sound and lighting effects to enhance the performance on the real stage. This real theatre is also used for special musical and theatrical performances. Also, check out the popular puppet theatre and perform your own fable or fairy tale.
Sea of Boats
Ahoy! An outdoor sea-faring, soft surface play-space that features boats, a lighthouse, and a crow’s nest with activities including radar, Morse Code, fishing, oystering, water play and other nautical knick-knacks. Water activities are seasonal.
Place your hand on the fabric screen and see how your touch changes the colors and shapes that you see.