A children's museum is defined as "an institution committed to serving the needs and interests of children by providing exhibits and programs that stimulate curiosity and motivate learning."
This means that children who visit a children's museum are encouraged to touch and, most importantly, play with the exhibits. In fact, the exhibits are designed with play in mind! Children's museums carefully designed and selected interactive exhibits that teach children a variety of concepts: from how shapes look to the water cycle, from counting to the power of wind. These museums are places for children of all ages to begin self-directed learning that builds their creativity, critical and divergent thinking skills, problem solving, innovation and self-motivation. Check out our Resources page to find research that supports the ideas behind educational play.
Children's museums vary greatly in style, size and content. This creativity and diversity means that these museums are continually changing with the needs of the children and families they serve. Join Wise Wonders as we grow in the field of children's museums! We're excited for you to grow with us!
2) WHAT IS STEM?
STEM is an acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.
Wise Wonders uses STEM to make fun, interactive exhibits, programs, and special events that also develop critical thinking, communication skills, creativity, and real-world problem solving through collaboration.
Why is this important? Because these skills are the building blocks of lifelong learners; exposing children to STEM at an early age supports their overall academic growth and lays a foundation of possibilities. See our Resources page for more information on STEM.
3) WHY DO ADULTS NEED TO PAY ADMISSION?
Great question! Adults pay for admission because we encourage adults to play as well.
We love when families interact together, not to mention that this collaboration between children and their grown-ups is incredibly important to child development. Check out our Resources page to find studies and research that support the positive benefits behind adult-child interaction.
4) WHY DOES WISE WONDERS HAVE ADMISSION ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS?
Wise Wonders Children's Museum strives to engage curious, creative, and scientific minds in a playful learning environment for all children and families. This is important to us because we believe in the power of access to education. We are also members of the Museums for All collaboration that supports museums providing opportunities to families in need.
You can benefit from our $3 EBT admission. Show a public assistance benefits card when you arrive and admission for you and your household will be only $3/person.
The Wonder for All Scholarship is also available. This Scholarship gives a full Family Membership to a family in need for $10. Click here to apply. You can also support this program by donating to Wise Wonders. Just let staff know that you would like your donation to support the Admission Assistance Programs!
Wise Wonders also offers Organizational Memberships to organizations that provide resources and assistance to young people. To learn more, visit our Memberships page.
If you benefit from any of the Admission Assistance Programs, please consider responding to this survey about your experience.
5) WHERE IS WISE WONDERS LOCATED?
The Wise Wonders Children's Museum is operating at an interim location in downtown Billings at 110 North 29th Street across the street from Brockel's Chocolates. We are open Tuesdays through Saturdays from 10am to 5pm.
Available parking is street parking, which is metered Monday through Friday. There is also a parking garage a block away from the Museum on the corner of 3rd Avenue and 29th street.
Every first friday of the month we are open until 8pm for free. These late hours are part of our First Free Friday program sponsored by US Bank.
6) HOW IS WISE WONDERS FUNDED?
Wise Wonders is always looking for private donations, corporate sponsorships, endowments, foundation donations and grants.
We are also supported through funds taken through general visitor admission, Family Memberships, fundraisers, and special paid programs.
Visitors and donors are also able to sponsor exhibits and programs.