Sunday, March 9, 2014

The Children's Museum of Atlanta Sonic Sensation and Homeschool Day Review

*This post contains affiliate links. Please see my Disclosure Page for details.

The Children's Museum of Atlanta began as a grassroots effort in 1988 with a group of dedicated parents and community volunteers who believed a children's museum would be good for not only their children but the entire city of Atlanta. The museum first began as a Museum Without Walls collaborating with schools, organizations and traditional museums to bring interactive, fun experiences to children throughout Atlanta. After several years Atlanta was ready to get behind the building of a physical location and in 2003 The Children's Museum of Atlanta opened its doors.
The museum is completely hand-on and focuses on interactive methods of transferring information to children to make learning exciting and unforgettable.

A moms review:
Do your kids love to touch and explore when you visit a museum? Mine do and it is always very hard for them to remember NOT to touch artifacts, painting, etc. But The Children's Museum of Atlanta is one museum where touching is highly encouraged! All of the exhibits in the museum are interactive, educational and FUN! The goal of the museum is to spark imagination and inspire discovery and learning for all children through the power of play.

The first time we visited the museum which was a couple of years ago I was not really all that impressed. They were in between special exhibits at the time, so we were unable to have that experience. I thought that the staff could use some improvement. And my children just didn't really seem all that impressed the museum. Maybe the day we visited was just a bad day for everyone. With that being said, on our recent visit they totally redeemed themselves and now the children and myself are in love with the museum.

The museum is one level with 6 learning areas:
  • Special Exhibit (currently Sonic Sensation)
  • Fundamentally Food
  • Crawl Space
  • Leap Into Learning
  • Let Your Creativity Flow
  • Tools For Solutions

There is also a lunch table section (yes you can bring in your own lunch), vending machine area and small gift shop. The museum is great for children who love to explore through hands on learning and pretend play. And the exhibits are geared towards 8 years old and younger.

Courtesy of  Children's Museum

A couple weeks ago we had the opportunity to attend The Children's Museum of Atlanta homeschool day. This was the first homeschool day we had ever attended at The Children's Museum and it was fabulous. My 6 1/2 and 8 year old learned a lot and had a blast. They are begging to return. We also got to check out The Children's Museum newest exhibit Sonic Sensation.

Museum Information and Exhibits:
The museum is broken into the 6 learning areas mentioned above. In these learning areas there are a variety of hands on activities that compliment the theme. These include things like building, painting, pretend playing, dancing, dressing up, etc.  Some of the things they will learn about are the agricultural origins of food, textures sounds, shapes, smells and movement, language for self expression, teamwork and problem solving and much more. There is also daily programming each day too which includes crafts, storytimes, shows and more.

Three times a year The Children's Museum features a special traveling exhibit in the back of the museum. Currently Sonic Sensation is on display and it is a must see exhibit. The exhibit will be on display through June 1st. The kids and myself had a blast learning all about sound in this multi-sensory exhibit.

top image
Courtesy of  Children's Museum

Last year we learned about Helen Keller and the sense of hearing so the exhibit was a great way to reinforce what the kids had learned. Sound is such an important part of our everyday lives and yet it can be a hard subject to teach to young children. Well thanks to the Sonic Sensation exhibit and all that we learned during the homeschool day program my kids have a greater understanding about sound.

Okay are you all ears? The exhibit is engaging, fun and informative. There are about 12 learning stations in the exhibit all of which are interactive and hands-on. Children will experiment with pitch, frequency and sound waves, test their listening skills and more.

Our first stop and last stop of the day was "The Scream Chamber". This is a soundproof chamber where you can step inside and compare your decibels to other animal sounds. Both kids were able to reach the same decibels as a peacock mating call which is 100 dB! Gwyn almost reached the next animal which was an elephant call at 112 dB. The kids returned to the scream chamber several times throughout the day to see if they could beat their previous decibel score.

Next it was time for our "Hearing Test". Here we listened to different pitches and frequencies. Then we recorded our results on the chart. Since we had just recently taken Rowyn to the ENT for a hearing check this was a really great way to expand on what exactly the doctor did during our visit.

So "How Do We Hear" anyway? Well through a large-scale ear model we learned just that. Here you launch a billiard ball to show how sound hits our eardrums and sends signals to our brain.

My personal favorite was "Seeing Sound." I couldn't resist playing with this multiple times throughout the day. At this station you can adjust frequency and amplitude knobs to drive the big speakers at each end of a clear tube. Then you can actually watch the contents of the tube bounce around. It was lots of fun, even for mom!

There is so much to see in this fun exhibit and it really is a must see. Each station has placards loaded with valuable information for parents to expand on what is being taught through the interactive display. Be sure to visit so you can learn all about sound and play on the "Invisible Orchestra," find the "Critters in the Cupboard," "Measure Sounds," and play a game of " Match the Sound," or High Pitch, Low Pitch."

Homeschool Day Information:
We had a blast during the homeschool day and it is one that I highly recommend attending. The Children's Museum offers homeschool days a few times a year so be sure to check their homeschool page frequently. During the homeschool day your children will cover science, history, math, social studies, language arts and more through hands on Imaginator-led activities! Homeschool days at The Children's Museum are targeted for grade levels PreK-4th and do require a reservation! The program runs from 12:00-4:00 pm and there is plenty of time to explore the museum before, after and in between each classroom activity. I love how affordable homeschool day is too, at just $8 per child ($4 for members) and FREE for adults!

Eric, Greg and Dwayne were our fearless Imaginators for the day and did a fantastic job with explaining sound in an easy to understand way to the kids. There were two classroom activities, an exploration station activity and a mini musical (which was hilarious). The children learned all about sound through fun, hands on activities and discussions. They saw how sound waves worked by playing with a slinky, made a phone call using string and paper cups, discussed echolocation, saw sound waves on a computer, experimented with pitches and more!

Want to see a video of our fun day? Here you go...

Extra details:
-The museum is stroller friendly and handicap accessible.
-Food and drinks may be taken into the museum and eaten in the back corner lunch area.
-Allow yourself about 2 hours to see the museum.
-There are a couple parking lots and garages close by that cost about $5-$10.
-Best time to visit? If you would like your child to have the opportunity to play and interact with various ages of children, then weekdays and weekend mornings may be the best time.  If you are looking for quieter time with your child, weekday afternoons are ideal.
-For additional educational resources visit When I Am, Multiple Styles of Learning and Learning Resources on The Children's Museum website.
-Currently you can get $20 off any level membership. Discount only available during the month of March – 3/1/2014 to 3/31/2014.
-The museum is FREE the second Tuesday of every month from 1pm - 7pm. This is made possible by Target!
-Fulton County residents are invited to buy one admission ticket and receive one additional general admission ticket for free on the opening day of each feature exhibit.
-Military discounts are available.
-Group rates are available for birthday parties, school groups, homeschool groups etc.
-Visit this link to learn about more ways to $ave!

275 Centennial Olympic Park Drive NW
Atlanta GA 30313
Phone: 404.659.KIDS [5437]

When to visit:
The museum is open Monday - Friday: 10:00 AM — 4:00 PM, Closed Wednesdays, Saturday and Sunday: 10:00 AM— 5:00 PM.

Adults, children, seniors - $12.75
Children 1 and under are free

*Homeschool day prices are FREE for adults and $8 for children ($4 for members).

Links to follow:
-The Children's Museum Website
The Children's Museum Facebook
The Children's Museum Twitter

*Prices indicated in post are subject to change.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thanks for stopping by! Please check the follow up box so you can receive my replies.

Designed By: Wacky Jacqui's Designs