Find and Expand your Children’s Interests, With a Trip to the Museum

by Matt B

The Met in NYC

The Met in NYC

This year’s slow and overcast Memorial day brought a gift for myself and my lady friend.  A day in which neither of us had to work or go to school.  Finding something to do that we both enjoy is sometimes hard, as we have been together so long that it is hard to find something new.  A barbecue?  Out of the question, the house is a mess.  The beach? Too overcast.  The last thing we want is to arrive at the beach only to see the clouds forming and an angry sky approaching.  Our final decision was a trip to the museum.

An inexpensive fee of $3.50 per person (thank you student discount) gave us access to a few hours of fun and education.  As we walked around reading, playing and interacting with various displays, I realized that many museums are a perfect place to find and expand interests in children.

Museums are not solely dedicated to art.  In fact, most museums have a special “focus”.  This focus could be any number of things, such as a specific time period, a culture, a type of science, military or almost any other subject you can imagine.

If you have children, a trip to the museum may open your eyes to an interest that you never knew your child had, maybe one that even the child did not know they had.  This may benefit the child greatly if focused on.  For example, let’s say your child has an interest in anatomy.  For this example, let’s also assume your child is old and mature enough to view human bodies nude and is not sensitive to the inner workings of the human body.  In order to further his/her interest and help the child learn, the Body Worlds or Our Body: The Universe Within exhibits  could be what jump starts a passing interest into a passion, maybe even a career (with time).

Finding the interests is easy, nurturing those interests is important (and not as hard as you would think).  Interested in old coins?  Try the Money Museum or check out the American Numismatic Association.  Planes? Explore this list of aviation museums. Astronomy? Here is a list of Planetariums across the U.S. You get the idea.  Some of the more specialized exhibits may be further from home than you can get, but I’m willing to bet that there is more close to home than you are aware of.

There are literally thousands of public and private institutions available to cultivate interests in young minds.  Check them out and take advantage of their resources, if not for yourself, for your children.  They may thank you for it later.

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