Why Your Kids Will Love The Smithsonian Air and Space Museum
The Smithsonian air and space museum at Chantilly and Washington DC both trigger the minds of the young and old alike. Children particularly benefit from the science exhibits and demonstrations the museum.
There’s so much in store for children at the space center – such as multimedia galleries, planetariums, walking tours and story times.
Children’s programs at the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum:
- Science demonstrations – These demonstrations range from 20-25 minutes and require reservations for classes with more than 10 children. These are available only at the Smithsonian air and space museum in DC.
- Story time – For the little tykes, pre-K to 3rd grade, the museum holds a little story telling session of 45 minutes where volunteers read space and science stories to children.
- Children’s tours – You can choose your tour based on your child’s age on this link.
- Learning Lab – yet another place where the experts teach and demonstrate science wonders for children of a wide range of ages.
- Planetariums – There are free 10:30 am shows every day in the Albert Einstein Planetarium at the Smithsonian air and space museum in DC.
- Interactive simulators – This is cool! Really! Choose the white flight simulators as it gives you the feeling of being inside a computer game. You can even turn upside down – and stay like that within the craft. The large red ride simulator was just a usual screen with some sound effects. It smelt a little smelly in the closed capsule, and wasn’t worth the money.
- Family days, talks and events – Often, the museum arranges for band performances, author book signings, special viewings and astronaut meet-and-greet sessions inside the airbase. Check out the updated event schedule here.
- Donald D. Engen Observation Tower – this tower is located at the Smithsonian air and space museum in Chantilly, near Dulles. You can watch airplanes take off and land at the Dulles International Airport. Also, you can learn about the US air traffic control and airport features. The closing time of the tower is 4:30 pm.
A minimum 3 weeks of advance notice is needed for the guided tours. So do plan accordingly. Pack light. Read up. And if you are planning a self-guided tour, note that you can ask for brochure guides in multiple languages (Italian, French, Chinese, Arabic).