It’s really really fall now, and that means more indoor adventures. We have a great collection of favorite places now that we have lived in Tacoma for a few years, and the top favorite remains the Children’s Museum of Tacoma. These days, there aren’t very many places where kids can practice making their own choices and controlling themselves without worrying too much about mistakes. We love the Museum because it’s a safe place to take some risks and jump into exploring. It’s full of things to touch, press, spill, climb, splash, pour, drop, paint, squish, and pile up.
“I like painting and I like playing. And I like painting butterflies.” -Edie
Our recent visits included some great interactive community sculpture. Above, Edie investigates a jump set where kids have been rolling wheels through paint and down the slopes. We check out the tracks left behind by everyone’s wheels. In another room, a potter’s wheel provides a spinning surface for bull’s eye drawings. Edie admires rainbow collection and adds one of her own, while Rory manipulates the mirrors and light tables nearby.
Both kids work together on the dials and toggles in the cockpit. Rory throws a switch back and forth intently. Edie zooms in to count the numbers on a pressure valve.
Rory discovered a new friend inside this under-stairs cave. He pops back out to introduce me and add his board to the peg panel just outside.
Each of our favorite places around town invite us to engage and participate in a different way. The Museum always provokes us to see the world in a new way. It’s so hard to leave, and we can never wait to go back!
Down the street from our house, Play and Learn has started up again for the school year. This great program is put on by the Tacoma Children’s Museum, and gives the kids a bunch of cool opportunities. For one thing it’s a wonderful indoor destination for the cold weather seasons, and it’s even closer than the actual museum location.
At Play and Learn, Edie and Gabe have had chances to play with new toys and sensory material, learn new songs and grow our attention spans with Cheryl’s circle times, and hang out with neighborhood friends. Cheryl is fun and funny, and full of great ideas to try, and the best part is she understands when we get wiggles. She gives us chances to dance off the sillies, and if that doesn’t work we can play quietly outside the circle and listen in.
Sometimes all the kids running around takes our full attention. Other times, the interesting blocks or special art materials give us a chance to practice focusing in the middle of distractions. Every time we go, the little friends learn a new song. Edie has been singing “Leaves are falling down” all week, and today Gabe’s new favorite was “Squirrel, shake your bushy tail!”
Go to play group. Let’s walk to play group. Look, yellow Edie! Look at this. I put in blue… here is pink. Swirl, swirl. I want another one paper.
Read a story. A story about animals. I sit down here. Come sit here! Bye bye play group, bye bye toys.
Walk to Playgroup with Mama. There it is! Water beads. It’s squishy. It’s wet. I want a pink one. Dump it out.
Play with toys. Play with a puzzle! What’s this one? What’s that? Hi Gabe! It’s circle time. Sit on a rug. Sit by myself, you sit over there. One drop of water, big rain! I like it. Dance time. No, do it by myself.
It’s yellow! It’s purple! On your face! In the sunshine!
Where Gabe go? I want to sit by Gabe. Come here Gabe. Here you go. Play in the water, I need apron. No, it’s mine. Octopus swimming in the water. Jump whale! Put it in this one. I want that.
I need scissors. I cut it. I cut it up. Put glue here. Paint this. At the Museum! It flies up! I go up the slide. No, I don’t go down it.
Go for a walk. No, I don’t hold hands. Do it by myself. Look up, look down, fast feet okay? I need a snack. Here you go Gabe. Put it in the trash. Let’s go. I thirsty. Take a rest.
Play group, play group! Elephants. Animals. I don’t know. I did a craft. Memory game. Color it with markers. Abacus! Blue, black, bull dog, another bull dog. Elephant, another elephant. Bug!
Do some puzzles. Circle time. Sing a song. Rain drops. Do a dance. Tell more. Edie and Mama at circle time. Gabe at circle time too.
Go with Aydan to a Museum. I need a apron, mom. Hi Auntie Kim. Hi baby Drake. Splash splash. I need a duck and a duck. No, it’s mine. Here you go. I spill it. Painting with Aydan. Clay with Aydan. I love you Aydan. I need a snack.
No my apron. Eat a sandwich. Mama I need fish crackers. Mama I need cookies and candy and water. Go get it. Hi Grandma! Hello! Hi! Pears I don’t want it.
Belly is all full. Mama I’m sleepy. I’m tired. No go up in bed. Sleep on couch. Okay, night night.