Monday, June 17, 2013

Discovery Place Kids in Rockingham, NC

The kids and I took a weekend road trip to visit family in Pinehurst, North Carolina. Between my family and my sister in law, Hayley's family, we have 5 boys under the age of 5!  The weekend was filled with activities to wear out little ones! One of our favorites was this gem - a museum in Rockingham, North Carolina.  Discovery Place KIDS is incredible! On this particular day we had the 5 boys and Hayley's two nieces. This museum was a treat for all ages in on our mini road trip from 17 months -9 years old!

I was as captivated as the kids were! Discovery Place KIDS is truly magical! The museum is split on two floors. The main floor showcased "The Rock"(Rockingham's Speedway)  by creating a pit stop where the kiddos could change tires, pump gas, and work on a Nascar-like  race car. The boys (of all ages) had tons of giggling fun doing what boys love to do- taking things apart and trying to put them back together!

Luke, Grant, Reid and Noah were hard at work!

I loved the creativity and thought that went into this exhibit! No detail was left out. All of the boys had a turn sliding under the car and working with the drill. They loved it! Many thanks to Therese for helping them all! Therese is working with Hayley's family as an Au Pair from Germany. She is a blessing!

Therese,  Hayley and her boys!

The museum is divided into 5 Themes based on the central concept of "I CAN". The themes of the museum are:
I CAN be Anything
I CAN be Healthy
I CAN Grow
I CAN Imagine
I CAN Wonder Why

The museum describes these different sections as:
I Can Be Anything: Role Play firefighters, chefs, veterinarians, farmers and more!

I Can Be Healthy: Get your heart pumping as you crawl through a treehouse, build a fort and paddle a canoe.

I Can Grow:(birth-36 months) Calling all itty bitties to develop curiosity, take risks, become persistent, imagine and explore.

I Can Imagine: Build with blocks, star in your own video or create a masterpiece in our Studio. Go with the flow or against the current at the air tubes and water table.

I Can Wonder Why: Test, explore and experiment with hands-on contraptions and real world science. 

The Rockingham Fire Department was another huge hit! The kids firemen bravely fought the fire by shooting big squishy balls through the burning windows!

The girls quickly found the Veterinarian's office and the Fresh Market. The boys later discovered them after fighting fires and changing tires!

The best part of the museum, for me, was watching the adults pretend, imagine and play with their children! That was part of the magic of the museum! It truly created a developmentally appropriate atmosphere with such a stimulating environment for the brain to blast off into the very limits of the imagination!

Aunt Hayley with her son Reid and nieces, Clair and Chloe. Together they work to create a circuit board!

The design and layout of the museum showed an extreme understanding of young children and families. In addition to family restrooms, there was a place for families to sit together and enjoy a picnic lunch or watch a puppet show!

 In the toddler area, only babies birth-36 months could play. It was a wonderful, safe environment for the youngest learners to safely explore independently or with a parent!

After exploring the main floor for several hours, we took a short walk down the road and enjoyed lunch at a local cafe! It was delicious and served as a nice rest for all! After lunch, we explored the lower level of the museum. 

Here you could build a tower, create a masterpiece or construct a super-soaring paper airplane.

Zach, opted to spend most of his time figuring out new and creative ways to soak his clothes in the water room! But, children of all ages really enjoyed playing in the water, as well!

 Here, the twins, Grant and Luke, are on a canoe trip in the great outdoors! In this section of the museum, the kids could swing from vines, paddle the canoe, climb through the "woods" or build a fort!

 This was the "heart" of the museum! Here we learned how we can stay healthy through play! We also enjoyed playing with the flow of air. We laughed and laughed as the air quickly sucked in and spit out soft balls and scarfs through the tubes.

Where are your favorite places to go with the kids? What cities near you have incredible children's museums or local favorites for the little ones?! We'd love to know! Leave a comment and let us know! And, remember, if you are ever in Rockingham, NC, there is a wonderful children's museum that you can't miss!

For more information about the Discovery Place Kids, please visit their website at

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