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New Exhibitions at the Montshire Museum Encourage Hands-on Science Discovery
May 05, 2017
For Immediate Release
Learn to identify and classify animal skeletons, go on an animal scavenger hunt, or test your problem-solving skills with puzzles and games. Beginning June 17, the Montshire Museum of Science in Norwich, Vermont will transform its second-floor mezzanine with two new exhibitions, Discovering the Natural World and Solve It!
Discovering the Natural World
Using authentic tools of scientific research, Discovering the Natural World will make learning about living plants and animals an interactive process that will surprise and delight you. Built as a connected suite of explorations and investigations, children and families have the opportunity to explore the museum like a scientist while having fun.
“The Montshire views science as an active process, which can be learned and applied,” says Sherlock Terry, Montshire’s Assistant Exhibits Director. “Activities in this exhibition allow you to use and practice the skills that scientists use, like observation, classification, and measurement.”
A few highlights of Discovering the Natural World include:
Skeleton Science — Learn about wildlife as you examine animal skeletons. Identify and classify the bones of a beaver. Learn about animal anatomy as you compare skeletons of different animals, including fish, frogs, bats, and birds.
Magnification Station—Through the magnification of seeds, bones, insects, plants, feathers, and scales you will discover how much more you can see!
Hemlock Holmes—Solve a botanical mystery. Using the clues that Hemlock Holmes presents, solve four botanical mysteries and become a full-fledged botanical detective! While you solve the mysteries, learn about plant characteristics, and how these help botanists make identifications in the field.
Animal Scavenger Hunt—A scavenger hunt to locate animals displayed throughout the exhibition. In addition to being lots of fun, this scavenger hunt encourages careful observation, critical thinking, and detailed recording of information.
Solve It! Puzzles, Math, & Problem-Solving
Energize your brain and spark your imagination as you quest for solutions to hands-on puzzles and games. Through fun and whimsical challenges Solve It! provides opportunities to build “grit” – the perseverance and problem-solving mindset needed to succeed as a 21st-century learner.
A number of important math process skills such as making sense of problems and persevering in solving them, using abstract and quantitative reasoning, are all applied to solving puzzles and games. Solve It! empowers and encourages you to test these skills as you hunt for solutions using geometry, patterns, and math.
“Puzzles and games are learning tools that present real challenges which naturally inspire the use of math skills,” says Terry.
The puzzle and game exhibits in Solve It! are grouped together by type of challenge and strategy for solving the puzzle. Different levels of challenge within each puzzle group will provide an entry point for beginners as well as a real mental workout for experts.
Caution: The puzzles and games in this exhibition can be habit forming!
Discovering the Natural World and Solve It! are made possible in part by donors to the David Goudy Discovery Fund.