Best Children's Museums in NYC for STEM Learning

You’ll hear government bureaucrats and educational experts complaining about the lack of qualified scientists in today’s marketplace, but what are we doing about it? What are you parents, doing about it? If you tag-team with New York City’s eclectic collection of hands-on, kid-centric science museums, you could be doing quite a bit.

Give your kids a love for all things natural by visiting these insightful, interactive, and educational science museums all over the boroughs.

American Museum of Natural History

The giant American Museum of Natural History in Central Park West is the after-life habitat of everything from dinos to crocodiles. Exhibits cover all manner of biodiversity, animal life, and earth and planetary sciences.

Keep kids’ eyes glued to the screen with a 3D movie at the museum’s IMAX Theater or tear them away from the screen when you participate in some of the family-friendly programs on offer. After-school programs for high school students interested in science professions, a Discovery Room for elementary kids and planetarium programs for all ages keep kids enthralled.

Check out the museum’s programs on people, too. Cultures modern and ancient are some of the museum’s favorite topics.

Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum

Perhaps you’re thinking “Intrepid” is just a fancy word meant to make your kids sound sophisticated. But the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum is the actual home base for science learning related to the Intrepid aircraft carrier. The aircraft is made up of four vessels – two by air, and two by sea – that made history.

Learn about the Intrepid’s past life in World War II and the Vietnam War – where it served as a wartime fighter – as well as its service in the 1960’s as a NASA recovery vessel (that’s where the “space” comes in). Kids can walk the flight deck, gallery deck, hangar deck, and sleeping quarters aboard the ship.

Visit the Space Shuttle Pavilion to meet the shuttle Enterprise (recovered by Intrepid) and see artifacts and exhibits related to its flights in space. A guided missile submarine and the British Airways Concorde jet, which made the fastest Atlantic crossing in history in 1996, round out the museum’s offerings.

Kids can test their driving skills in a flight simulator, build their own aircrafts and even spend the night aboard the aircraft carrier if they’re legs are seaworthy. The museum is a fun and practical way to talk about science, technology, and national service with your kids.

New York Hall of Science (NY-Sci)

The hands-on, inclusive nature of the NY-Sci is designed specifically for teaching kids’ skills related to science, technology, engineering, and math – the STEM disciplines. Engage with the museum’s 450 exhibits, and find out if you’ve got a future scientist on your hands.

Activities for tiny tots investigate creatures in the city, teach how to make crayons and tinker with all sorts of design and building ideas. Kids of all ages will find cool challenges when they engage with exhibits. The practical uses of math, how molecules shape our bodies, and what we can see under a microscope are just some of the discoveries that could turn your little city kid into a science geek.

Museum of Mathematics

Foster an appreciation for math at the National Museum of Mathematics, or MoMath, a learning center focused on kids ages 10 to 15. Exhibits explore patterns, space, symbols, and structures to connect kids to the ways math shows up in everyday operations and objects.

Take a stroll through the museum’s temporary gallery to see artwork that demonstrates some of the different ways math impacts the world. Kids can participate in weekend or summer workshops, and parents can accompany them to special events at the museum.

The museum is open every day of the year, except Thanksgiving.

What’s your favorite educational science museum in (and out!) of NYC? Tell us in the comments below!

American Museum of Natural History by Jorg Hackemann. Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum by oneinchpunch/Shutterstock. Museum of Mathematics by MetroFocus/Esha Ray

Tags : travel   NYC   New York   



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