Saturday, November 8, 2014

Water Ways is NOW OPEN!

Our imaginative new Water Ways exhibit has opened to exuberant splashing, spirited squirting and all-out squeals of delight!

On Thursday, we invited a dozen kids, ages 1 to 12, for a sneak peek and to test things out for us. The initial response: they surged and swirled around the room in a flurry of excitement, enthusiastically trying each activity and rushing on to the next. After a while, they settled in, and kids of all ages (and some grown-ups!) were deeply immersed in interactive water play.

Water is intrinsically fascinating.  The ultimate “loose part,” it naturally invites open-ended play and exploration.  Water play is a mesmerizing sensory experience that fosters creativity, stimulates curiosity and promotes problem solving for all ages and abilities.  It offers children endless possibilities to engage with science – to notice, question, experiment and develop a sense of wonder about the world around them.

Water Ways motivates visitors of all ages to think, ‘What does water do?’ and ‘What can I do with water?’ by inviting them to splash, discover and playfully experience water in ways new and familiar while investigating its properties in different forms – liquid, ice and mist.  Some scenes from the all-new Water Ways...

Transforming the size and shape of billowing mist and water domes by turning valves that regulate the rush of water.

The mist dome is a water dome with mist pumped inside so that the surface tension of the water traps the mist. When the water surface is broken, the mist wafts out in captivating clouds.

Sending balls, boats, and other loose parts and spiraling and twisting through vortexes  – whirling "water tornadoes," as kids describe them – and figuring out how to change the way the water moves.

Connecting pipe pieces to form fountains that funnel the flow of mist and water.

Investigating, scooping and sculpting crushed ice using a variety of tools.

Painting watery designs on a large slate wall.

Building mazes and damming water cascading downstream with blocks and sandbags.

Scooping and pouring water at toddler-height troughs and squirting and squeegeeing in an expanded play area especially for the Museum’s smallest visitors.

And droplet-shaped labels offer adults prompts and ways to play, encouraging them to notice and appreciate the learning that happens as children splash and explore.

Don’t miss out on the exhibit that visitors declare is “Super duper fun,” “Wicked awesome,” and “Splashtastic!” – come experience the all-new Water Ways for yourselves!

And see the posts below for a peek at the process of creating Water Ways.

Water Ways is supported in part by The Norman & Rosalie Fain Family Foundation and June Rockwell Levy Foundation.
All photos copyright Providence Children’s Museum and may only be used with permission.

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