Today we went with new friends to the Science Centre. It’s always nice to share the fun at the Science Centre and particularly exciting to be taking people who were brand new to the Science Centre.
For homeschoolers in the Brisbane region annual passes are pretty close to a must-have item. No, the Gold Coast, Ipswich and surrounding localities are not too far away so you can’t use that as your excuse! 🙂
We find annual passes better designed for the learning experience. When you visit for the very first time the kids are too over stimulated to take the time to read or listen to the information about each exhibit. I’ve seen parents tear their hair out trying to get their children to absorb as much as possible but it’s a futile activity. You are much better off letting the children explore. If they come away from the centre thinking, “Gee that Science place was fun” then you have got your money’s worth!
After several visits the children will begin to share observations and ask question. You will, of course, have read the signs enough times to be able to answer some of those questions. Then stand back and watch when they bring friends with them to the Science Centre. They will start to share what they have learned with their guests. They may even prompt them with focused questions. Ah yes, your work is done.
This was probably our last visit to “Going Places”, the current visiting exhibition in the centre. The boys have enjoyed this exhibit. Ethan was particularly pleased with himself as he finally maneuvered the tricky and temperamental airships through the hoop…but right at that very moment I chose to turn and check on Brayden’s location…and I missed it. What an awful mother! Probably made worse by the loving taunt, “Oh yeah, sure Ethan”. Hehehehe.
We’re already looking forward to the next exhibit, “Playing with Light“.
Totally unplanned, in the afternoon, we visited the museum’s current exhibition, “Explore-a-saurus“. We’d actually seen these dinosaurs several years ago down at Currumbin, however the boys were much smaller and may not have remembered much of the first trip.
This exhibit is not free, however they have a great combined Science Centre and Explore-a-saurus deal which is the most economical choice. AND you get a few dinosaur chocolate with every ticket purchased.
While the exhibit is good, in all honesty, I would say it’s more suited to the younger crowd (up to 8 years of age). Of course homeschooled kids often aren’t the norm (which I love) so my boys were perfectly happy to spend their afternoon with their much younger friends.
All of the dinosaurs are animatronic, meaning they move.
(There are also information pages on all of the dinosaurs!)
There’s also one dinosaur that roars, which can be rather daunting to the little guys. Thankfully it’s the only one that doesn’t look life-like.
Ah, but really, what’s a dinosaur exhibition without a little terror and atmosphere. 🙂
There were quite a few additional hands on exhibits to enjoy. We liked this footprint making exhibit. You actually see the footprints appearing on the path in front of you. It’s very cool.
We also enjoyed putting pvc piping together to create different dinosaur sounds. How do they come up with these ideas?! Clearly the creators have a lot of time on their hands.
Finally, at the far end of the exhibit hall, was the Dino Dig area. Despite being 9 and 11 years old, my boys dove right in with all the littlies. There must be something sensory about the experience as they spent ages in there…it’s not sand but tiny pieces of rubber. It helped that there weren’t very many children in the pit and they could take their time hunting for dinosaur bones to uncover. Things are always nicer without a crowd.
Actually these first few weeks of the year are the perfect time to visit the museum’s “Explore-a-saurus” exhibition and the Science Centre. We didn’t see a school student all day long. It was wonderful. During peak school group season you’ll want to leave your visit until after lunch, when most of the groups are returning to their buses and heading back to school.
So that was our first excursion of the year. We have several lined up already. Actually I have a few more I need to book on Monday. I better organise that. No we don’t do big homeschool group excursions. They are just as bad as school groups. We just select a few dear friends and make a small group booking. A much more pleasant experience…just like today. 🙂