Making Magic at Museums - My Family Travels

Tips for making the museum visit experience extra valuable for children

If the idea of another pretend bus, or roomful of blocks, or vague art project makes you shun the local children’s museum, it’s time to take your big guys out to an adult art museum. In order to get children’s attention, add some playful elements and keep your visit short. Don’t forget to:

• Visit the information desk and pick up the specially designed children’s guide or treasure hunt.

• Take everyone into the gift shop to buy a favorite postcard, then spend time in each gallery looking for these artworks. 

• Designate your own tasks or objects; have the kids count cats, find men with ponytails, point out pictures of fruit that begin with each letter of the alphabet, look for headless statues, etc.

• Encourage children to ‘step into’ artwork, imagining life in a swirl of colors or life as a character in a painting, or life in another time and place.

• After your visit, ask kids to imitate an artist’s style to make their own portrait.  What do they think the artist was trying to say with this artwork?  How would they say the same thing?

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