Monday, February 17, 2014

New and Noteworthy: Outside In

The Academy of Natural Sciences has long been famous for its more hands-on approach to learning, but with the new renovations on their Outside In exhibit, even the youngest and smallest hands will be able to participate in discovering the world around them.  The renovations have Outside In broken up into four different areas, designated as "The Woods", "The Pond", "The Beach", and "The Hands-On Lab".

In the center of The Woods is a big tree which serves as the home of various little creatures to be discovered.  Behind the tree is a giant eagles nest, where you can hang out with the nearby eagles and create a safe place for your giant eggs.  In The Woods you will also find live animals such as a rabbit and the legless lizard to admire and sometimes even interact with!
The Pond area will draw those fascinated by running water.  Hang out under the stream and watch the flow just before it heads over the waterfall.  Low steps leading up to the pond are great for small legs, but there is also a ramp behind the tanks containing some interesting live creatures.  Make sure you stop and check out the turtles in The Pond area too.
More turtles can be found in The Beach, along with a larger desert tortoise.  Spend your own time in the sand in the digging area while the sounds of seagulls and waves make you feel like you're at the shore.  Watch out for sharks though, as some of them have left their teeth to be discovered nearby.   While you are there, try your hand at making a fossil rubbing from ammonites that have been left exposed on the rocks.
For some real interactive exploration, head to The Hands-On Lab.  Touch and feel furs, teeth, and bones from various animals.  Hold items under the giant projected magnifier to see how unique each item is.  Delve into books and puzzles for all age levels to experience the fun of learning.
Outside In is wonderfully spacious with ample seating and an inviting atmosphere.  Wander from area to area as you discover more and more to find in each location.  Be on the lookout for live animals being brought around to touch and interact with.  And talk to the staff!  They are incredibly helpful and very excited to share their knowledge with both adults and children.
If you have yet to see the new Outside In, then come prepared to be impressed.  It is a fantastic exhibit with something for every age that makes learning extremely fun and completely interactive.
More PHOTOS from Daily Vacationer's visit.

Also check out our time in Dinosaur Hall at the Academy
during Dino Week and Dino Week Jr.

1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway
Philadelphia, PA 19103

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  1. I haven't been to the Academy of Natural Sciences since I was very young! Thank you for reminding me of this gem in our city - I will need to bring my children there soon.

  2. Wow, this looks great. I am like Stephanie, I have not been there since I was 10 or so. Should totally take the boys!

  3. I love the Academy we did my sons birthday there once it was so much fun they Had the Poop Exhibit which was so much fun for 6 year old boys.

  4. This place is AWESOME - you really captured the fun of it. (and great photos!) My son and I were just there for the great Dino exhibit and we are totally going back

  5. We were there recently and my kids LOVED it! We were fortunate enough to show up on NBC day and got in for free! Bonus! :)

  6. This is on our "to do" list for places to visit. I can't believe we haven't gone yet! My kids would love it and especially with this long, cold winter we are always looking for new indoor places to explore and create adventures at!

  7. This is one place that we have yet to go to. It is definitely on our list for this summer!