Kidspace Children’s Museum is one of the best children’s museums in Southern California and recently made our top list of 40 LA Museums to Explore with Kids. The name says it all…Kidspace is designed just for kids. Each space within the museum provides opportunities for hands-on learning and interactive play. Children are encouraged to jump right in as soon as they arrive and lead the way. Flashy electronic displays are nowhere to be found, but that’s what makes Kidspace such a unique learning place for children.
A day at Kidspace is a walk down memory lane for me with the outdoor play spaces, nature inspired exhibits and simple activities with water, rocks, and mud. A new addition to Kidspace this year is Arroyo Adventure – an area that features 8 interactive outdoor exhibits that connect children with nature. It’s a kid’s paradise complete with water play, clay molding tables and bridge climbs above the Arroyo Seco themed area.
During our visit, my daughter and her best friend became explorers navigating their way up rocks, through a stream and getting their hands dirty making “mud cupcakes.” Along the way, my daughter made new playmates who shared her love of water and dirt! The stream is also a perfect place for adults to rest a bit under the shade of trees or in my case a perfectly shaded bench.
Galvin Physics Forest
Galvin Physics Forest is an outdoor arena with science based games, including my daughter’s favorite Ball Bounce. Giant lever pulls, cool fans and bottle rockets are just a few of the activities that she enjoyed. Make sure to read the instruction boards for each game though to make sure you’re following the proper steps. Each game will challenge your mind and body!
Kidspsace Indoor Activities
If you and your kids need to escape the heat, there is plenty to explore in Roberts Pavilion inside. Climbing towers invite children and adults to ascend more than forty feet to view the entire Kidspace museum. My daughter was a bit hesitant to navigate the levels on her own, so I joined her for the first half. I must admit I had a blast!
However, I was sad to hear that our favorite indoor exhibit, Bugsy’s Diner, is closing in September. This is a great exhibit for children of all ages. My daughter takes role playing very seriously especially when she’s in charge of the diner. She loves to serve up the food and tell me all about the veggies and fruit options available in her diner.
Kidspace Children’s Museum also has an Early Childhood Learning Center for children 3 years old and under where they can play with sensory learning games and toys.
Kidspace Visitor Tips
- Extra clothes are needed if your child decides to explore the Arroyo Adventures area.
- Bring sunscreen and water bottles as several of the activities are located outside and the afternoon sun can be very intense in Pasadena.
- Refillable water stations are located in the outside café area.
- Kidspace staff are available in each exhibit to answer questions and offer assistance when needed.
Kidspace Museum Free Day
The first Tuesday of every month from 4:00 to 8:00 pm is Kidspace’s Free Family Night! Admission to the Museum is FREE for everyone during these hours only. Families can engage with special programming and performers that highlight cultures and traditions from around the world.
Kidspace Homeschool Days
Kidspace Children’s Museum Homeschool Days take place once in the fall and in the spring.
- The cost is $15 per student.
- Each student is invited to participate in one of the museum’s signature Discovery Programs along with other homechoolers.
- The participation fee does includes admission to the museum for the day.
- There is no fee for accompanying adults.
- Siblings not participating in the program pay the regular museum admission of $10.
- No minimum number of students required to sign up.
- One adult must be present for every 5 students registered.
The next Homeschool Adventure Day at Kidspace is set for Thursday, November 17 at 9:45 am, 11:00 am and 12:00 pm. For $15 per student, enjoy admission to the museum and a 45 minute Discovery Program. Choose from three different programs: Chumash Cave Painting, Fantastic Physics, and Nanotechnology. Some restrictions apply, see website for details.
Kidspace Discovery Program Classes
Each 45-minute Discovery Program is available on Homeschool Days at 9:45 am, 11:00 am and 12:00 pm. There are no discounts for registering for multiple classes; however you will receive a FREE return pass for every extra class you sign up for.
Chumash Cave Painting—Grades K to 4
Explore how art has been used through time to communicate and tell stories. Students will investigate how the Chumash lived and produced cave paintings to tell their stories using natural materials. They will crush rocks to make paint to tell stories of their own and create a “cave painting.”
Squishy Electricity—Grades 1 to 4
In this exploration inspired by our Imagination Workshop, students will be challenged to think creatively about the materials given to them while learning the ins and outs of building circuits in a fun and safe manner. Participants will create fabulous sculptures that light-up, beep, and spin. Problem solving, critical thinking and experimentation will “light up” students’ imaginations
Exploring an Ecosystem—Grade K to 2
Explore the Kidspace wildlife pond and discover how the plants and animals all connect to form a food web. Students will take an in-depth look at ecosystems around the world, and examine what makes them so different and yet so similar. They will then investigate what factors can weaken and ecosystem and what can be done to help restore it.
To learn more about Kidspace Homeschool Days visit http://www.kidspacemuseum.org/groups/homeschoolers.
Kidspace Hours & Admission
Kidspace Children’s Museum is located at 480 North Arroyo Blvd. in Pasadena, CA. Admission is $13 for adults and children.
Happy Field Tripping!
About the author:
Liz is an avid beach goer and blogger at Urban Beach Baby where she shares adventures and tips for creating a family-oriented urban beach lifestyle. Join her as she explores LA to find the best kid-friendly gems in and around the area!