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DuPage Children's Museum continues to serve children and families during closure

 

Last updated 4/16/2020 at 10:18pm

DuPage Children’s Museum (DCM) values creativity, curiosity, community and collaboration. During the temporary closure, which has been extended through April 30, the DCM team is finding new ways to deliver on its vision and mission.

As childhood development experts, DCM’s staff members know that creative play mitigates stress and promotes overall health. Music, movement and laughter are great stress busters. Focused learning is important too. DCM Early Learning Specialist Alix Tonsgard explains, “Routines and structure are critical to helping children to feel safe and in control. This sense of security is a key component of healthy growth and development. By providing caregivers with activities and resources, we are hoping to give them the tools to establish a routine that will support their child's growth and development in this uncertain time.” That is why the Museum’s creative team is producing “Play to Learn at Home,” a new online community of programming and support that will provide a daily dose of DCM. The program aims to share playful learning activities with isolated families.

DCM Public Programs Manager Cassie Coffey delivers story time weekly via Facebook Live. Arts & Maker Specialist Dustin Thacker performed an original song, ‘Big Pig!’ with his children to demonstrate playful music, movement and silly play. Since science and art are also core to the Museum’s mission, DCM recently shared a short video about DIY Sidewalk Paint.

The team has more in development that will be shared throughout the coming weeks including family yoga, book making, sensory bags, bilingual story time and more. Everyone is encouraged to explore creativity and curiosity at home by visiting DCM’s Blog at dupagechildrens.org/blog and social media accounts on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube.

In addition to creating and sharing online content, DCM donated $2,000 worth of developmental toys to shelters and pantries in its service area from the Museum’s Explorer Store. Visitor Services Manager Hiroki Ogawa and Director of Development Renee Miklosik practiced safe social distancing measures to coordinate donations to Hesed House in Aurora and West Suburban Food Pantry in Woodridge.

“I was thrilled with the opportunity to be able to help bring the DCM experience directly to children and families during this stressful time,” Ogawa said. “Toys were chosen from the DCM Explorer Store to engage the imagination and creativity in children to keep the play growing.”

Miklosik went on to say, “Our physical doors might be closed, but DCM is very much delivering on our mission to bring quality early childhood education experiences to all. Hesed House and West Suburban Community Pantry are amazing organizations, and our team is proud to do what we can to help those on the frontlines serve their clients.”

Rest assured, DCM’s early learning team continues to work to design and build new exhibit experiences to ignite the potential for all children to learn through hands-on exploration. Now more than ever, the Museum must creatively inspire curiosity, wonder and discovery in determined critical thinkers who will solve world problems like the current global health crisis.

To connect with DCM resources, join its online communities. Follow, like, comment, and share @dupagechildrens social media posts with its new online content via Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube.

 

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