Monday, December 17, 2012

Dinosaurs! (Indy Children’s Museum)

Keith always saves some vacation days so that he can be away from work for the whole week of Christmas.  This year, he had one extra vacation day beyond what he needed for Christmas week, so we decided to have a special family day.

After thinking through some options, we decided to go to the Indianapolis Children’s Musuem.  The last time we were there, Alex was two and Max was a baby.  We were really looking forward to visiting the museum again!

While the whole museum is lots of fun, there was one very special part for Alex: the dinosaur exhibit!

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Since he just learned about dinosaurs a few weeks ago with MFW K, Alex really enjoyed their dinosaur display, dressing as a dinosaur, being a pretend paleontologist in the dinosaur dig, and having a long chat with a REAL paleontologist. 

Poor Max panicked shortly after we entered the dome with the dinosaurs on display.  The dome gives the impression that you’re outside.  The sky changes from day to night, there are occasional “thunderstorms”, and you can hear dinosaur noises/roars and thunder from time to time.  My sweet three year old just couldn’t separate fantasy/reality, and he kept saying, “Take me back inside…PLEASE take me back inside.”  We hurried through that section to get to the dinosaur dig, but Max was still too overwhelmed to enjoy himself.  Instead, he just snuggled with Daddy.

IMG_7060Alex dug for quite a while, and he told the museum worker all about his mini dinosaur dig kit that he’d completed at home.  She sweetly listened as he told her all about it.

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Jensyn thought she’d try, too Winking smile

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We moved on to the dinosaur play area, where Alex dressed like a dinosaur.  He thought it was pretty fun to have his own dinosaur hands tail and hands!

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Jensyn had fun playing in there, too!
She took pretend naps while Alex played,
and then she’d pretend to wake up and give us big grins.

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We saw real, fossilized dinosaur eggs and read about types of dinosaur eggs.

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We examined real dinosaur bones and watched a real paleontologist hard at work, gluing together some bones.

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Then, we saw that the window to the paleontologist’s work room was open, and Alex had a long chat with a real paleontologist.  He got to hear about the dracorex dinosaur, which (if I understood correctly) is the most recently discovered type of dinosaur, and see the model of a dracorex that the paleontologist was working on. 

This picture is a display case of the real dracorex bones:

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In this picture, the paleontologist is in the background, and Alex is touching a real t-rex bone.

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Here, Daddy & Alex are checking out a real meteorite.

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Max finally settled down enough to enjoy the dinosaur play table with Alex.

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Alex enjoyed moving the sliding x-ray of this dinosaur.

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All three kids loved watching the trains, even Jensyn got really into this!  I’d say this was her favorite.  Even when we were ready to move on, Jensyn still stood watching the model trains and saying, “Choo choo!”

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(Can you see Alex’s head peeking out in the middle of the model train display below?)

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The kids collected rocks from a rock slide in ancient Egypt…

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Max was fascinated by this sarcophogus puzzle.

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The kids dug for Chinese statues…

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…and built Chinese statue puzzles

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The boys loved the HotWheels exhibit…

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Daddy and the boys went down the big winter slide…

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…and then we went to Bears Playhouse for some good ‘ol toddler fun!

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Our last stop of the day was the Jolly Days Christmas room where we did some ice fishing, climbed in the ice castle, ice skated in our socks, and waved hi to Santa.

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Before leaving, we let each boy pick what he wanted to see one last time. 
Alex wanted to return to this construction site:

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Max just wanted to sit and watch the amazingly-awesome ball display.
Seriously, he sat here without moving for 20 minutes!

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We stayed at the museum from shortly after opening until they were getting ready to close.  It was a LONG day, but oh-so-fun!

Here are a few more random pictures that didn’t fit elsewhere in the post:

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1 comment:

Lindsay said...

Wow this looks like an amazing children's museum!! What fun!