Children’s museums inspire shouts of discovery, scampering, jumping, and laughter. However, loud sounds, vibrations, bright lights, and the fast pace of visitors can be overwhelming to some patrons. To mitigate those impressions and make The Staten Island Children’s Museum as welcoming as possible to all children, the Northfield Bank Foundation provided a grant that enabled our Museum to create 12 Sensory Tool Kits, as well as purchase weighted vests. These are now available to be used by young visitors, particularly those with Autism Spectrum Disorder or Sensory Processing Disorder. Packaged in child-sized backpacks, the Sensory Tool Kits contain toys which provide calming stimuli and engagement, including sensory rollers, earmuffs, sunglasses, weighted sports balls, and mini etch-a-sketches. Also included in the kits are communication tools, including timers, maps, and emotional language cards. The backpacks and contents are themed to match different exhibits in the Museum, so children can choose to borrow kits related to their favorite exhibits. Families can borrow the kits or weighted vests at the front desk or by requesting one from a staff member on any floor as needed to make their visit as enjoyable as possible.
Throughout August, we have indoor and outdoor fun for families. Our summer hours are from Wednesday through Sunday for two sessions, AM: 10:00 am to 1:00 pm and PM: 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm, with an extra hour until 6:00 pm on Wednesdays. Activities include a new anthill climber in the Bugs and Other Arthropods exhibit, a new laser game simulating extinguishing a fire in the Ladder 11 exhibit, and audience favorites: the Sea of Boats playground with a water table that has six stations and the Garden Terrace which makes use of elements of nature to provide learning pathways.
We are offering a number of science and cultural events in August to enhance visitor experience. Our free outdoor musical event series Boogie Woogie Wednesdays continues each week after the Museum closes at 6:00 pm.
Wednesday, August 3: Caribbean Vibe Steel Drum Band
Wednesday, August 10: Bollywood and Bhangra Dance with the Ajna Dance Company
Wednesday, August 17: African and African-American Style Dance with the Harambee Dance Company
Wednesday, August 24: Broadway Style Dance with Walter Rutledge
Wednesday, August 31: Calpulli Mexican Dance Company
The Weekend Wonders free outdoor event series reignites with two STEAM shows. These events are held between the AM and PM visitation sessions from 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm. Sunday, August 7, Mad Science will host a Rocket Show that explains how and why rockets fly and will launch several rockets into the air. On Sunday, August 14, Kevin Gaines of Wildlife Revealed will bring his flock of birds of prey called Sky Kings to the meadow. Visitors will be able to see the birds up close and learn about their hunting adaptations.
Boogie Woogie Wednesdays and Weekend Wonders are made possible by sponsorship from Broadway Stages, Con Edison, Empire State Bank, Generation Bridge, NYC Ferry, Northfield Bank, Richmond County Savings Bank and the NYC Council.
Also on Wednesdays, from 4:30 to 5:30 pm, inside the Museum and included with admission, representatives from Literacy, Inc. will read aloud a story and guide a related craft-making sessions.
ShopRite Kidz Cook workshops are held every Friday at 11:00 am, 12:00 pm, 2:30 pm, and 3:30 pm and are included with admission. In August, the dishes are inspired by an outer space theme and include: galaxy cracker toffee, astronaut’s cotton candy, blueberry space jam, and space tacos.
Saturday, August 20 from 4:00 to 5:00 pm, the Prismatic Magic PreSchool Sing-Along comes to the Children’s Museum. This show offers bright colored laser animations and a lively mix of nursery rhymes and modern kid-friendly favorites that will inspire kids to clap and dance around while learning about colors and the alphabet.