Going into 2021, we finally owned our new building and were determined to use it. In October of 2021, we launched our first Waterville-area afterschool program and held it right outside the museum in our backyard. Now that it’s winter, we have brought the program inside. Our space has sat relatively empty since we purchased it, so it feels surreal to be welcoming kiddos in for programs! Today, we’re excited to share our newly-updated afterschool program space with brand new flooring and tell you a little more about our program.
All of our programs are designed and run by Caitlin, our go-to program extraordinaire.
Our fall program was called Einstein Time and gave children an opportunity to explore some of the classic science experiments, including fizzing color-changing cabbage juice, slime, circuits, and egg drops. Next up, our winter program called Make It or Break It is themed around engineering, with kiddos making Rube Goldberg machines, parachutes and catapults. We are using these programs as an opportunity to test out program themes, ideas and lesson plans that we can then replicate in the museum once our exhibit space is open to the public.
These afterschool programs have also been an opportunity for us to build partnerships.
During Einstein Time, we were fortunate to work with Caroline and Lily, two interns from Colby, who helped prep for class and also helped run the actual program. Now, with Make It or Break It, we are working with Chris from the Maine State Library. “It's been a lot of fun working with Chris because she not only connects with the kids but has a lot of engineering knowledge and excitement for the subject,” Caitlin said. As a small staff of two, the museum welcomes the opportunity to work with other folks from like-minded organizations!
Once the museum exhibits are open to the public, this room will become a flexible space, with the primary job of hosting birthday parties. Families will be able to rent this room for a private party that includes play time in the museum. When not being used for birthdays, the room will also provide a place to run extra-messy daily programs, host special guests, provide a retreat for snack time, or serve as a home base for school groups. The room even includes a door directly to the backyard for taking extra messy projects outside!
While we can't wait to finish our exhibits and open the hall to the public, in the meantime, we are thrilled to be building relationships with families, welcoming folks into our space, and providing our signature hands-on program for children.
Interested in signing up for a session? Shoot Caitlin an email and you’ll be the first to know when our next session opens! Caitlin@childrensdiscoverymuseum.org.
We loved the way the floors came out. Next up... paint! How do you think we should paint the walls?