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Science + You

Through January 10

“Science + You” offers a child-sized laboratory where children can explore how scientists impact health and wellness. Through hands-on, interactive machinery, processes and technology, “Science + You” demonstrates the role science plays in keeping the body healthy. This exhibit is nationally sponsored by the AbbVie Foundation.

Entering the Exhibit

Children will enter the exhibit as if entering a real-life laboratory. At the first station they can pretend to wash their hands and then wipe their feet on a special gel-like floor mat that changes colors to represent the dirt particles it is removing. Children can even walk through a pretend shower to be bathed in blue lights before they put on their white lab coat. Graphics will communicate how important it is for scientists to work in a clean environment.


Demonstrating how antibodies act in the body, this component of the exhibit offers children the opportunity to understand a complex process through play. A clear Plexiglas structure is filled with magnetic balls, which represent “germs” in the body. Four stations outside the structure include a moveable antibody that children can use to manipulate germs. Children use the antibodies to collect the germs within the structure and move them to the “white blood cell” tube. Once the germs have been transferred into the white blood cell tube, they are dropped into a hopper. When all the germs are collected in the hopper the activity is complete and the body deemed healthy. The germs are dropped back into the center of the structure and the activity begins again.

Glove Box

Children can use a glovebox, a sealed container used by real-life scientists, with gloves built into the sides allowing one to manipulate objects safely. Demonstrating how scientists use a glovebox to contain materials as well as protect themselves, the children will wear thick gloves to measure substances using beakers, funnels and other lab equipment.

Mixing and Separating Test Lab

Exploring how scientists use machines to mix liquids and solids, this component of the exhibit demonstrates how different types of equipment function. Children can see the machines in action and can also manually mix and separate liquids and solids themselves.

Magnification Area

This exhibit features a specialized Wentzscope and video microscopes that magnify objects on a large video screen, allowing younger children to compare and contrast an array of natural and man-made items up close.

Healthy Lifestyle

Science has shown us that we need a balanced lifestyle to stay healthy. This exhibit component emphasizes the importance of nutrition, exercise and rest with an interactive activity. The exhibit features an outline of a human body with a hollow center. Children place puzzle pieces representing various forms of nutrition, exercise and rest in different areas of the body. When a healthy balance of all the components is achieved, children hear a congratulatory message. The exhibit promotes being active in a variety of ways, from traditional exercise such as riding a bike, to common activities such as cleaning the house, doing the dishes or walking to school.

Test Kitchen

In the test kitchen children will make a ‘healthy soup’ choosing their own combination of appropriate ingredients. Teaching children the importance of a balanced diet, this exhibit has stations with soup pots that can hold up to six ingredients. Children pick the ingredients from the five food groups. The burner under their soup pot lights up when they’ve selected the correct balance of healthy ingredients.

Science Reflection

Children can share their scientific thoughts and reflections after experiencing in the exhibit. A variety of images, drawings and terminology from the exhibit is provided that children can use to create their own collage. A display wall allows children to share their collage reflection with the public. Grease pencils will also be provided for children to write down their impressions.

© 2011 Kohl Children’s Museum of Greater Chicago. All rights reserved. Science + You is sponsored internationally by the AbbVie Foundation and was developed by Kohl Children’s Museum of Greater Chicago.

We are very thankful for our corporate sponsors.