Friday, 29 May 2009

The Exploratarium

My sister had been telling us about the Exploratarium - saying that it's very good for both kids and adults and that the girls enjoyed it so much that they cried when it was time to go home. As a result, they bought like season passes to the place so that they could go often at a discounted rate.

Look! We lucked out! It was free on the day we decided to go coz of donation from The Bernard Osher Foundation! Faboo!!! Now, looking at their website, think they support life long learning, or something like that. Anyway, THANKS a lot!!! :)
This huge round thing was at the entrace. It's an inclined huge disc which has some metal pieces within. So when you spin the disc, the metal pieces move about - guess you learn about centripetal forces, and the paths the metal discs take etc. But for kids, it's just fun to make the thing turn round and round and watch the metal discs move.
Look! Kids on a school trip to the Exploratarium! Guess a lot of them were there that day coz it was free. Here they are having their packed lunches - lunches they packed themselves, and not like chicken rice or mc donalds as we do in Singapore. Most of them had a sandwich, a packet drink (some juice), and a fruit (apple, banana etc) in their lunchbox. So cute eh! And they were all very well behaved, sitting in a corner, as instructed by their teachers.
There were older kids outside by the pond, having their lunch and feeding oart of their lunch to the birds too. Isaac liked to see birds, and we wanted to be out in the open for awhile, so we went out. Plus, we were attracted by the kids too kekeke...
See, Isaac managed to score another picture with a blonde...
It's always nice to take pictures out in the open, with natural lighting and all. And all this nice greenery in cool weather... fantastic!
One of Isaac's favourite activities is to go through his Papa's legs. He thinks it's fun. And does it over and over again. Think we caught a video of that below.

Smiley Isaac! :)Here's the vid! enjoy! ;p

Look at Isaac's pants. It's meant for 2 year olds, so it was kinda long. Had to fold it a bit, but it sure came in handy for this trip as it had an inner cotton lining, and the outside was kinda windbreakery kind of material - plus it was only S$10 and branded. Think Baby Gap - got it from those overruns stores.
Hubbs attempt to take a picture of me and Isaac. Again, he's not smiling. hummmphh
Hehehhe.... a better pic this time - at least he kinda looks like he's smiling!
Here's a vid of Isaac walking. I like to take vids of him walking, coz I think it's an important milestone to be able to start walking.

Here he goes again... in, out, in, out... hahahhaa...
Smiley Isaac with hubbs' knees! kekeke... See, Isaac's smiling...
Nice place huh. How come our Science Centre don't have surroundings like that. hahahhaa...
We were kinda scared that Isaac wouldn't get used to the cold, or that he'd fall sick. So we dressed him up in at least 3 or 4 layers each day. That's why he looks pretty buff in the pictures.
After lunch and the walk outside, we went back into the Exploratarium. Here's Isaac playing with sand on a spinning horizontal disc.
And here, playing with pendulums...
The Exploratarium takes everyday simple science concepts and blows it up, and make it such that it's very hands-on. You can touch it, feel it, and just play with it. I mean, look, we've all learnt about pendulums and the path it takes, wave theory etc - but when have you ever seen such a huge pendulum swing thingy that kids are allowed to touch?

This one below is a room, which uses the lines to give an illusion about size. They didn't do this well though. We saw a much better one in New Zealand when we were there on honeymoon. Hmmmm... maybe I oughta go dig out and post the video hubbs and I did in that. :)

See here, this is an interesting contraption. It shows us our face, in the orientation that our friends see us, and NOT the orientation that we see our own face in the mirror. Oh yes, if you didn't already know, we see our own face in the mirror differently from how others see us. We didn't conciously realise that till we saw this exhibit.
It is kinda disconcerting when you see the picture of your face the way other people see you. I'm not sure how to describe it, it's just kinda wierd. hahaha...
This one below is about Mark Twain's theory that so long as the first and the last letter of the word is correct, it doesn't matter how the rest of the letters are placed - people would still be able to read what you're intending to write. Hahaha... well, sure, but you defnitely get marks minused for sure... and confirm spelling FAIL!!!
Ah this is my favourite below! My sis says it is Isabelle's favourite too. This blackish gray stuff below is Magnetite - it's black magnetic sand. Magnetite is an iron ore that is found in beach sand in many locations. It can be collected just by dragging a magnet through the sand. (info from Exploratarium website). COOL HUH!? See below for the video I took one-handed of myself playing with the black sand! :)So, my theory about why the Exploratarium is so successful and popular is coz it breaks complicated scientific theories down into simpler terms by making huge exhibits, or exhibits that allows kids and adults to be hands on with it. This makes it very fun and interesting for both the young and the old.

Well, being typical Singaporean that I am, I was telling hubbs that "Actually this place, not difficult to do what. We can also make one like that in Singapore. The Science Centre people should come and take a look." hahahahhaa... See, I typical Singaporean, right? kekeke...

So, we spent an entire day at the Exploratarium and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. Travelling with Isaac has been 'slow'. Which we kinda expected. Of course, we can't expect to like cover 3 or 4 tourist attractions like we used to when we were travelling before we had kids, right? So we managed our own expectations and just took it slow and easy.
Well, we had a lot of fun this trip, despite it being slow-going and we didn't "cover " many places. So, to us, it just goes to show that you CAN travel with kids, even though you have kids. So! To all those people whose excuse not to have kids is coz you "wanna travel" - it's not true!!! kekeke...

pix & vids taken on 4th Dec 2008
Isaac @ two days to 16 months

Oh these last 3 pix are of us chilling in the hostel's lounge after dinner, and before we went back to our room. Was quite a cool place coz there was free wifi, and loadsa backpackers were all there chillin' too. So we had a nice chat with some of them. And of course everyone was entertained by our cute Isaac :)

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