Children’s educational programs on making Chinese paper lanterns, creating sock puppets and skits, exploring rockets and sampling the fine arts will be highlighted during the Spring 2010 Children’s Museum season starting on Saturday, Feb. 6.
The Children’s Museum offers interactive, hands-on educational experiences in an environment where Cortland community parents, grandparents, caregivers, teachers, college students, youth and young children can be inspired to play and learn together.
Presented by faculty and students in SUNY Cortland’s Childhood/Early Childhood Education Department, the programs run on selected Saturdays from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m., unless otherwise noted, and are open to community families and their children. With the exception of the Kidsville Fair event, all programs will take place at the Children’s Museum, located on the ground floor of O’Heron Newman Hall at 8 Calvert St. in Cortland. Admission is free but donations are gladly accepted.
Haiying Wang, a lecturer in SUNY Cortland’s International Communications and Culture Department, and Shufang Shi and Lin Lin, assistant professors in childhood/early childhood education, will present “Happy Chinese New Year” on Feb. 6. The children will learn how to say “Happy New Year” in Mandarin Chinese, will make and eat Chinese dumplings, will color and decorate paper lanterns and red money packages, and will be able to share Web sites and stories about the Chinese Lunar New Year with friends when they leave.
Assistant Professor Kim Rombach will help children of all ages create sock puppets during a “Community Puppet Theatre” on Feb. 20. Afterward, participants will work in small groups with college students to collaboratively plan a puppet show. As the day’s finale, the youngsters will watch the puppet shows they created.
Professor Cynthia Benton and students from her Fine Arts and Early Learning class will offer a “Fine Art for Early Learners” program on Feb. 27. The future educators and Benton will lead the children in creative art projects, singing, movement and listening activities for many types of learning.
Assistant Professor Susan Stratton will continue her “Nature Nook Series” on March 6 with a program that will engage children and families in exploring how feathers, fur and blubber help animals stay warm in cold weather. The series is funded through a grant from the Auxiliary Services Corporation (ASC).
Assistant Professor Orvil White will present “Blasting off!” on March 27. Participants will construct different types of rockets and “space” planes that are safe for indoor flight.
The April 17 Children’s Museum program will be held at the Kidsville Fair, an annual event sponsored by the Cortland Area Child Care Council in the County Office Building gymnasium. The youngsters will experience a fair on this year’s theme of “Circus” as the council celebrates the “Week of the Young Child” from April 12-17.
Assistant Professor Heather Bridge will offer “Wonderful Water” on April 24. Children and their families will investigate how water moves and how everyday household materials change when water is added to them.
On May 1, a special program in the “Nature Nook Series,” led by Stratton, will engage children and families in examining spring plants and starting vegetable seedlings to take home.
To reach the museum entrance, follow O’Heron Newman Hall’s driveway. Parking is not permitted in the driveway but is available in the parking lot of the Dowd Fine Arts Center on the corner of Prospect Terrace and Graham Avenue.
For more information, contact Emilie Kudela, associate professor of childhood/early childhood education, at (607) 753-5525 or Stratton at (607) 753-2467, by e-mail at email@example.com or visit the Web site at http://www2.cortland.edu/community/childrens-museum.