Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Fun in Phoenix

Today we went to the Children's Museum. It's downtown and the building was built in 1913 as an elementary school. The grand opening was Father's Day weekend. We've not yet had a chance to break anything there go; finally today was the day! It is such a fun place. I had so much fun. Mr. Intensity had so much fun. [Thank you to my mom & dad who gave Mr. Intensity a membership for his b-day.]

First stop of the day: double sided Plinko board. Mr. Intensity is in red; his friend, Zach is in the blue/white stripes.

Next up: traffic school on a suped-up tricycle.
Then we played on this lighted sand table with all kinds of fun manipulatives.
The art room was super cool. Below the boys are painting in a house. I asked one of the volunteers if it was made of papier mache. No, it just has fifty bazillion layers of paint. A different color every day. Mr. Intensity said this was his favorite activity.
Below seems to be a very Montessori type work and I'm not sure I've seen a variation of it anywhere. The kids were given buttons and paper clips and could decorate the wire "house" as they wanted. I think Mr. Intensity would have worked longer on this but Zach was ready to move on.
Here the boys are working on an open ended craft project. The staff had several "canned" things they could make copy - like a frog hat or other flat animals. It warmed my heart to know they wanted to make something on their own. I think Mr. Intensity's became something belt-like that could be used to carry weapons. I promise y'all - I do not encourage the violence. It comes naturally.
Below is an ice cream shop. Mr. Intensity said, "There are real scoops here!" The boys loved it. And reminded me of this post by Montessori Mama.
What day would be complete without some bamming?! This one used feet and hands.
This part of the museum was heaven for my lil gear head. It was an all-boy playland. The racecar had pedals, the steering wheel moved, there was a crank shaft on the front which made the pistons go up/down. He put gas in the car (the pump was over his left shoulder - complete with switches and lights). The kids could even decorate it with magnets on the side.
I know it seems like I've shown you a ton of pictures but really, these are just the tip of the iceberg. About half of the shots he is concentrating with his tongue out or has a look of intensity like in this one:
Next is a picture from the "ball" room. It was loud, a bit chaotic but very fun. It reminded me of a Rube Goldberg contest in college.
At our house, we make pizzas but don't have a brick fired oven. Whoever made the fabric dough was amazing. I was amazed too many times today. The people who planned this museum really know what kids love and didn't skimp on the details.
Need a scoop of peas anyone?
The grocery room was also a huge hit. There was food the children could "buy." The boxes, cans and jugs were recycled for the children's use by covering them with clear tape - to keep the lids down, etc. I thought that was an ingenious idea.
He loved being behind the register and scanning the labels (which beeped). The conveyor turned (on a crank). It was all very realistic.
On our way out, we stopped to play in the "tents."
Even adults could give these things a whirl. Reminded me of a segway. Anyone seen the Wierd Al video: White & Nerdy? My husband thinks it's hilarious and sings it more than I care to admit. Especially when we see the rent-a-cop on a segway in the Target parking lot. Need I remind you we live in a very safe well protected part of town?
If after reading this post you don't want to visit Phoenix, you don't know about FUN. :)
Remember, there's also the Diamondbacks, Cactus League Spring Training, the zoo, the Suns, the Cardinals, the Desert Botanical Garden and the Grand Canyon. If you come in the summer, it's super hot (but you can stay in a super nice resort for about $60/night - via Priceline.) We have an extra room and welcome visitors. Come visit us!


Julie said...

seriously I want to come... but by the time we come back on furlough you will probably have moved by then... you are planning on moving right? sigh... eli would have loved that place... jasper too, the little stinker!

John and Pam said...

Oh what FUN for JI!! Thanks for all the cool pix!

Anonymous said...

Fun times. Maybe we will get to go to PHX after all. Grand Canyon anyone?

Julie said...

How could I forget the Grand Canyon? I'll add that to the post, right now.

reprehriestless warillever said...

Don't tempt me...when we were in Death Valley, CA we considered taking a "detour" to the Grand Canyon. You were in Florida at the time, though...

That museum looks like so much fun! Your son is a lucky guy to have a membership.


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