Have you seen these SEASONAL CRAFT KITS available in the museum?!
Our Autumn Aprons kits were extremely popular this fall, and now we have two more kits, each available for donation* of $15 or more. You can paint vehicles and make your own roads with the Open Road kit, or decorate your own little winter beanie with Wacky Wearables!
*The Zimmer offers free and discounted memberships to families who qualify, and any donation helps make the power of play available to another family!
What are you waiting for? Come get your own kit at the Zimmer’s front desk today!
This week’s Random Act of Kid-ness comes to us from Poway, California, where 5 year old Ruby Knudson made a slideshow of hand-drawn memes to raise over $1,000 for her elementary school’s fundraiser. Ruby’s school does not allow kids to go door-to-door asking for donations, so Ruby and her dad came up with the meme idea. Ruby’s dad Nathan said:
“She’s learned that the computer is connected to real people and real things which can have a real impact. I’m trying to teach her that if you’re following the crowd through life you’re never going to be first to do anything.”
Ruby’s slideshow went viral on Reddit and got so many views that it crashed the fundraising site!
We love little creative thinkers! Good job, Ruby! Read more here.
Have you seen the brand new literary mural in Bubbie’s Bookstore?! Now, while you are reading some of your favorite books in the little nook, you can discover even more entertaining reads to check out in the future.
So what are you waiting for? Come curl up and unwind with a good book today!
This week’s Random Act of Kid-ness comes to us from Missouri, where 3 year old Liam Myrick has started to sell his paintings to help pay for his parents’ $500,000 medical bills.
Liam was diagnosed with stage-four Neuroblastoma in July, and his sister battled with cancer the year before. Now, Liam wants to help his parents with their financial burden by using the energy he has to paint. His parents are auctioning Liam’s work on Facebook to subsidize the medical bills.
Liam’s mom Shawna says,
“He doesn’t care about what’s going to happen ten minutes from now. He cares about the moment.”
What an inspiring story of one kid trying to make the world a better place for his family. Read more about Liam’s story and how you can buy one of his paintings here.
Here at the Zimmer, not only are we playing our way to a better world, but we’re also drawing our way to a better world!
Last month, we participated in The Big Draw LA, a “city-wide celebration of the act of drawing.” As part of The Big Draw LA, we invited visitors of the Zimmer Children’s Museum to create a permanent mural, ArtVille, for the museum! From Tuesday, October 18 through the end of the month, we invited all families to draw, color, and cut their own buildings, cars, roads, and more! Our resident art teachers Julie Jacobs and Sasha Karlova were the leads on the project.
According to The Big Draw LA website:
Drawing is a universal language, connecting generations, cultures, and communities. Children draw to make sense of the world before they learn to write. Yet most adults, given a pencil, claim: “I can’t draw!” The Big Draw aims to remove this barrier and create opportunities for people of all ages to discover that drawing can make us SEE, THINK, and INVENT.
Check out the BEFORE:
And… voila! Check out the AFTER:
So next time you’re at the museum, don’t forget to peek your head into the Art Studio and see our new ArtVille mural!
It’s time again to meet another wonderful Zimmer staff member. Say hello to BELINDA, our Education Program Manager!
Name: Belinda Vong
Position: Education Program Manager
A little bit about her: Belinda is an artist and educator. She received a BA in Sociology and a BA in Studio Art from the University of California, Irvine, and continues to study Early Childhood Education at East Los Angeles Community College. Previously she has worked as a Program Coordinator at the UCI Cross-Cultural Center, and as an after-school teacher in the Mountain View School District working with students from Kindergarten through 5th grade. Her involvement at the UCI Cross-Cultural Center and experience in working with children in underserved communities continues to fuel her passion for creating access for young children to learn about the world around them through creative and interactive play. When at the museum, you can find her twisting up some quirky balloon animals or guiding your next school field trip!
Childhood heroes: Sailor Moon and Martha Stewart
Take me through a day in the life of Belinda at the Zimmer.
Usually I step into the museum and head down to the lower level towards the galley to drop my lunch off in the fridge. This is when I like to take my rounds on the lower level, walking through each exhibit making sure that each space is ready to be played in. I usually get a few minutes to myself at my desk to check my e-mails and voicemails, and to prepare for the day. Then 10 o’clock hits, our doors open to the general public, and the kids start crawling in!
Throughout the day, I can be doing anything from welcoming a bus load of eager preschoolers for their annual field trip to the Zimmer or preparing our art room or program room for a class. I also try to squeeze in some time at my desk to do some office work and to brainstorm new program ideas! Though our weekly programs are always the same, and field trips are typically scheduled to come only on Tuesdays and Thursdays, each day is never the same… which makes it that much more exciting to come to work each day!
What’s your favorite exhibit at the Zimmer?
It’s hard to decide on any one favorite exhibit! I definitely appreciate the overall connectedness of our exhibits and the many ways to explore and learn from each of them. For instance, the simple act of being able to plant soft and bright flowers into our recycled garden hoe holders is a neat way to illustrate not only how we can recycle materials, but also how we can help to take care of our planet – by planting flowers! The little ones can also practice numbers by counting the flowers, or sorting by grouping the different colors of the petals… and these are just a few activities of one part of one exhibit! Imagine the many experiences the little ones can have throughout the entire museum!
What is the most memorable thing you have been involved in here?
The greatest part about working in a space with children, is that each day is definitely not like any other day, and each day is always filled with memorable moments.
Off the top of my head, one of the first memorable moments I’ve had was on my 3rd day on the job. The other staff and I noticed a piece of brownie on the ground by the Mann Theater. It definitely was a brownie… or was it? It wasn’t too dry, nor too moist, but a very nice and solid chunk of something brown. We circled it, bent down to smell it… sure enough, it was definitely a ‘code brown.’ One of our brave part-time staff slapped on some gloves, scooped it up, and vindicated (our cleaning solution) it!
Of course, since then, I’ve had many more equally memorable experiences. A few of my other favorites have been CAMP Zimmer, Sunday Family Day programs with Love on 4 Paws, Mista Cookie Jar & the Chocolate Chips, and Wishes for Our World. AND, I’m excited for more memorable moments to come!
Thanks, Belinda! Check back next month to meet another member of the Zimmer team!
This week’s Random Act of Kid-ness comes to us from Salem, Massachusetts, where a group of kids in the Torch Club is using art for social good.
Last year, the club took an art culture course, where the 10-12 year old members learned about art from all over the world. This year, they created a giant Guatemalan-style kite to benefit an organization that uses art for community development in Central America called ArtCorps. Taylor Nelson, the director of art and education for the Salem Boys and Girls Club and Torch Club, says:
“It’s easier to help the kids understand community service when you do it for someone you see,” she said. “But I think it’s more important for people you don’t see. I want to infuse ArtCorps’ idea that there’s a big world out there and art has a role in it.”
To read more about ArtCorps and the Torch Club, click here.
“Once you begin to acknowledge random acts of kindness – both the ones you have received and the ones you have given – you can no longer believe that what you do does not matter.” -Dawna Markova