Since March 15th the Hawaii Children’s Discovery Center closed its doors due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Like many children’s museums, we were faced with the challenge of keeping our families and the greater community engaged with hands-on interactive learning without a physical facility. While the Center has never done much online content development before, our staff quickly shifted gears and learned new skills in video production, editing and social media.
On March 17th the Center launched an At Home Learning series aimed at providing educational resources to parents through online videos and printable lesson plans. Our very first video came from the NISE Network’s 2017 Explore Science: Earth & Space toolkit. “Exploring Earth: Bear’s Shadow” was the perfect activity because it targeted our demographic of young children and used materials easily found at home.
The NISE Network activities proved invaluable to us because we had all the materials and lesson plans ready to go. Whenever possible, we included a hands-on activity related to the lesson for the children to do at home. In addition to NISE Network activities we have also filmed storytimes, art activities, yoga and STEM activities for our At Home Learning series.
Explore NISE Net's Nebula Spin Art hands-on activity
Starting May 1st the Center moved our part-time preschool classes online. Their monthly theme was weather. Our preschool teachers were able to use our Investigating Clouds video as part of their lesson on weather. In the video we included a fun recipe to make puffy cloud paint. In June our preschool class theme will be space so we will be able to use many of our videos as part of our online class.
Explore NISE Net's Investigating Clouds hands-on activity
On May 15th we had the opportunity to tie in another great NISE Network activity, “Pocket Solar System,” in conjunction with the viewing of the International Space Station.
Explore NISE Net's Pocket Solar System hands-on activity
We can’t thank the NISE Network enough for providing us with invaluable resources to provide educational content to our community during these uncertain times.
To learn more about Hawaii Children's Discovery Center's virtual programming, contact Liane Usher, President, at firstname.lastname@example.org. And check out the Children Discovery Center's Facebook page to view their At Home Learning activity videos.
Explore all Explore Science: Earth and Space toolkit activities at https://www.nisenet.org/earthspacekit.