Woodbury will be science ‘Central’ for kidsCentral Park will be turned into a science destination on Jan. 28 when it hosts the first-ever Family Science Day, which is a partnership between the Washington County Library and the Science Museum of Minnesota.
By: Amber Kispert-Smith, Woodbury Bulletin
Central Park will be turned into a science destination on Jan. 28 when it hosts the first-ever Family Science Day, which is a partnership between the Washington County Library and the Science Museum of Minnesota.
During the event, a variety of “tabletop” exhibits will be set up and include such activities as: creating a nature journal; investigating symmetry, shapes and patterns in nature; learning how scientists collect; solving a nature mystery; and collecting take-home activities that will further their exploration of the natural. Como Zoo will even have a presentation at Central Park’s amphitheater.
“This year’s theme is ‘nature in your backyard,’” R.H. Stafford Library manager Chad Lubbers said. “Nature in your backyard encourages kids to collect and observe what’s going on in their backyard.”
Additionally, R.H. Stafford Brach Library will have its satellite Collector’s Corner open.
Collector’s Corner, which began in 2009, allows children to bring in items or materials they find and then trade for other objects.
Children are encouraged to learn a bit about their objects before coming to the corner though, because the more they know, the more points they get – thus helping them trade for other items.
The Collector’s Corner is open Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and Tuesdays from 4 to 7 p.m.
Lubbers said they can see anywhere from two or three children all the way up to 30.
“The numbers have grown steadily,” he said.
Lubbers said the Collector’s Corner success prompted the library to want to bring other science-related programs to the library.
“We just figured, ‘let’s do something else kind of science related,’” he said.
In addition to the Collector’s Corner, R.H Stafford Branch library also offers science-themed story times.
“Whereas during one story time we’ll have a story about teddy bears,” Lubbers said, “in the science story time, we’ll have a story about grizzly bears – it’s a way to encourage kids to think.”
The library also has a book display showcasing a variety of science-related library books.
“Libraries have a proven track record for doing advocacy for literacy,” Lubbers said. “But, science is kind of a new thing.
“Parents can do more at home to take a more active interest in the sciences.”
Lubbers said he is hoping to make the Family Science Day an annual event for the library, but he will just have to wait and see how the event goes.
“This is kind of a trial thing for us,” he said. “But, I like that the library has the resources to help our kids do better in science.”
Explore Nature: Family Science Day, in cooperation with Washington County Libraries and the Science Museum of Minnesota, will be Jan. 29 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Central Park in Woodbury. During the event a variety of interactive science activities will be on display.