Last Sunday, we headed up I-95 for a nice 50-minute ride to the Stepping Stones Museum for Children. PBS Kids Club 13, which I am a proud ambassador of, was holding an event with Arthur there. As I have said previously, they hold 13 “Fun and Free” events during the year which are perfect for kids of all ages. It costs only $75 for the whole family for the year.
It was so nice to bypass the main ticketing area and go to the trusty Kids Club 13 table where we got our stickers. Next to that area is the Energy Lab where kids can observe the properties of water in a hands-on way. My son loves water play so he was definitely in his “element.” There are multi-colored balls that travel through different plastic-covered passages and over the water.
Soon, though the kids were venturing out into the Celebration Courtyard which has these big foam blocks that my 15 month old liked to try to pick up. Too bad they were bigger than he is! It’s a great space for toddlers since the ground is padded so no worries about bumped heads or bruised knees.
Then, we headed over to the Traveling Exhibit Gallery which was featuring access/Ability: an interactive exhibit that promotes disability awareness. This was the most educational part with areas like a wheelchair obstacle course and a hand-pedaled bike. If you have a little Bob Villa on your hands you can check out the “Build It!” area where you can learn about architectural design and construction.
Next to the Exhibit Gallery are three smaller rooms with the Family and Teacher Resource Center (lots of learning opportunities here), Science Lab, Art Studio and Light Gallery. The kids enjoyed playing with clay with one hand and painting while blindfolded so as to understand what it’s like for people who have disabilities.
In the Multimedia Gallery we got to meet Arthur and take pictures. In case you didn’t know, Arthur is a great show about an 8-year old aardvark. His engaging, emotional stories explore issues that face kids everyday. Check out his site here.
Then, we had lunch in the Cafe–I highly recommend the pizza and the curry chicken sandwich. With our bellies full we went to the Tot Town section which was so charming. There is a closed off section for toddlers which my 15 month old loved. Lots of soft cushions to lie on, a fish tank at their eye level, toys in abundance, books, etc. In the other area there is a hollow tree that kids can hide in, dress up clothes (my son was sporting the dinosaur), a music area with a mini piano they can step on and a structure they can slide down.
This area was probably the area we spent the most time in. It encourages more imaginative play and it was a great area for kids to play with their friends.
My husband remarked on how nice the size of this museum was. It reminded me of the Please Touch Museum but on a much smaller scale. Sometimes you want that, though, especially with a family of 3 kids! I think with young ones who tend to roam it’s better to have them in a more contained and manageable area. You don’t want to constantly quash their innate curiosity to explore things in their own time.
By 2pm we were ready to take off so the little ones could get their afternoon nap. We left through the main door and they have a small door for just kids to enter/leave through. It was a nice touch for a museum that truly caters to the little people in the world!
303 West Avenue, Norwalk, CT.
Monday through Sunday from 10am to 5pm
Adults and Children $14; Kids under 1yrs old are FREE.
If you want to check out the Maritime Museum, which is nearby, check out Jersey Kids’ review here!