Friday, April 22, 2011

Chinchillas and Bunnies and Frogs, Oh My!

The Children's Museum was thrilled to welcome Matt of Animal World Experience on Thursday. After several weeks of voting for our favorite animals, the votes were counted and Matt brought in the winners!

Rudy - A Chinchilla whose breed has become endangered because they have the softest fur in the world and have unfortunately been used for fur coats. This lucky chinchilla spends her days in a safe home, enjoying raisins.

Kiwi - An Australian White's Tree Frog whose slimy skin makes him hard to hang on to. He's a great jumper and climber and was happy to take a rest on the heads of a few volunteers at the Museum!

Peanut - A Guinea Pig who was dropped off at a pet store when her owner couldn't care for her anymore. Luckily she was taken in by Matt and his wife Melissa where she is a "chatterbox," squeaking and squealing her days away.

Scooter - An Alligator Snapping Turtle who took a bite out of some celery in front of his audience and cut just like a knife! Don't be fooled by his 2" long body at birth because Scooter may one day grow to weigh over 300 lbs!

Oreo - A Bunny that was found on a campground in Connecticut. She was not supposed to be let loose in the wild, so Matt spent 8 hours trying to coax her to come out from under a deck. He was successful and now Oreo spends her days munching on apples and helping Matt teach kids about responsible pet ownership.

Angel - Oreo's sister who is known as the "Queen of the House." She is a quirky little bunny who is litter box trained just like a cat.

Hulk - An Emperor Scorpion who is the 2nd largest kind of Scorpion in the world. When Matt shined a special flashlight on her she turned green! Hulk was cool to look at, but not to touch. From her sharp claws to her venomous tail, she's not as nice to pet as a Bunny!

Matt taught the children that welcoming a new pet into your home makes it a part of your family. It's important to never set your pet free in the wild if you can't care for it anymore. There are plenty of options for a shelter to keep them happy and healthy!

"We hope that through our animal presentations people will develop respect and awareness for animals of all kinds." - Matt and Melissa

Click here to learn more at Matt and Melissa's Website or Facebook Page!

-Kerri, PR Intern

Friday, April 15, 2011

Happy Birthday to...US!

We invite you to celebrate the 20th birthday of The Children's Museum. Your participation and continous support in helping children and families become lifelong learners deserves applause..and cake!

The Children's Museum in Easton was founded in 1986 by four Easton residents, all mother of young children in search of hands-on educational experiences with their kids close to home. With overwhelming commitment and support, broad volunteer assistance, and donations from area residents and businesses, the Museum opened in 1991. Since then, the Museum has renovated the basement, better known as the FETCH!(tm) Lab, creating three floors of fun. About four years ago the Wild Place was added, giving children the option to explore outdoor learning opportunities. Today, over 50,000 people visit the Museum annually, including over 100 school groups.

Saturday, April 16 - Saturday, April 23 the Museum is excited to welcome two separate acts of magic and mystery, hosted by Awesome Robb of Awesome Robb's Adventures and Random Effects Entertainment's Matthew Graham. Not only may we have the chance to see a rabbit come out of a hat, we will be introduced to a variety of fun animals when we are joined by Matt and Melissa Gabriel of Animal World Experience. You've voted for your favorites, now see which animals made the cut!

What would a birthday party be without a cake, or five? Our bakery friends from Andrews Bakery, Big Y, Montillio's, and White's Bakery are baking us a cake day to make each celebration unique. We will be hosting an honorary cake cutter each day who has supported the Museum's mission for the past 20 years.

Create your own cupcakes, get some silly facepaint, or decorate your very own party hat. Whether you stop by to meet Ruff Ruffman and Smokey Bear, or just to take home your very own balloon animal, this is one party you won't want to miss!

(For a full list of April Vacation events, visit our website.)

- Kerri Welsh, PR Intern

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Exploring Music

Wednesdays are all about Exploring Music at the Children's Museum! Kerry Campbell teaches a fun, interactive class to toddlers and preschoolers centered around singing, playing, and learning. Today the children clapped sticks along to, "Little Red Caboose," recited a rainy day poem, shook egg shakers to the beat, sang a song with a silly crocodile guest, and danced underneath a big, bright parachute!

Kerry's background may be in early childhood eduction, but when budget cuts in her local school district took music, art, and gym away from students, including her son's 1st grade class, she took action. Kerry began teaching free music classes once a month for K-1st graders and as her popularity grew, so did her class schedule!

Kerry has been teaching at the Children's Museum for over a year now. She also holds classes at Julie's Dance Studio of East Bridgewater and Joyful Learning of East Bridgewater. Visit our website to plan a visit to explore music with us!

- Kerri, PR Intern

Monday, April 11, 2011

Privyet Drugu!

On Friday, April 8, our Around the World passports brought us to Russia, the largest country in the world. Russia occupies one-tenth of all the land on Earth and spans 11 time zones across two continents (Europe and Asia). It comes as no surprise that Russia holds 9th place for most populated country with 141,927,297 people! With so much land, it’s no wonder why Russia his home to a large number of ecosystems and species. Its forests, steppes, and tundras provide habitat for many rare animals, including Asiatic black bears, snow leopards, polar bears, and small, rabbit-like mammals called pikas.

This exciting country comes with a lot of culture. Luckily we had Kathleen from the Russian American Cultural Center in Boston to share fun facts and yummy foods.

Kathleen shared a wide spread of traditional Russian treats, that she enjoyed during her five year residency in Russia.

Samovar – Used to provide boiling water for a variety of domestic purposes including making tea.

Prianiki – A Russian favorite, ginger bread made of flour, honey, and sometimes egg.

Blini – Similar to a thin pancake but usually served with sour cream, jam, honey, or caviar. Can also be served as a crepe with fillings such as cheese, chicken, or fruit!

Russian Chocolates – One of the best-known chocolates since there is an entire chocolate tradition!

Pelmeni – Dumplings filled with a meat or fruit, wrapped in a thin dough.

Have you ever seen a matryoshka doll? They are a set of Russian nesting dolls made out of wood. Each wooden doll separates, top and bottom, to reveal a smaller doll inside. There are typically at least five dolls in a set but there can be many more. Typical matryoshka are painted to resemble peaseant girls but animals and Russian leaders are also popular. The word matryoshka means “little matron.” The kids were able to make their own matryoshka dolls out of paper cups, as well as find the fifteen dolls hiding around the museum. They also designed and decorated their own tops for spinning!

Did you know that Jean Baptiste Lande was one of the first instructors of ballet and brought his students to Russia to perform for the Empress Anna? The students put on such a spectacle for the Empress that she decided to start a ballet school in Russia in 1738. This school was known as the Imperial Ballet School, and later became known as the Vagonova Academy under the direction of Agrippina Vaganova. Catherine the Great also started a ballet school at an orphanage in Moscow in the late 1700s. In honor of Russia's dancing routes, our intern Jennifer Moson, taught future ballerinas basic ballet positions.

Learn to speak Russian:
Yes- da
No - net
Please - pozhaluysta
Thank You - spasibo
Hello - privyet
Goodbye - do svidaniya
Goodnight - spokoynoy nochi

Until next trip, do svidaniya!

-Kerri, PR Intern