Boston Children’s Museum Brings the Power of Play to Boston’s Neighborhoods and Beyond

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Museum Partners with Reach Out and Read, ReadBoston and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt to Build Literacy Skills through Play

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Through the Museum’s collaborations, we are actively engaged in supporting play and learning in children’s everyday lives - in the neighborhoods where children and families live.

Boston Children’s Museum is collaborating with Reach Out and Read to support opportunities for children and adults to play and learn together when they are waiting for appointments at pediatricians’ offices and health centers in Boston and throughout Massachusetts. The Museum has designed posters to inspire children and adults to engage in playful ways – with the goal of building literacy skills and creativity through interactions such as making up a story and playing “I Spy” games.

The Museum designed and printed 1,200 posters, which Reach Out and Read will distribute (along with books related to play and imagination) to 303 pediatric practices and clinics throughout the state. The posters feature core messaging about the importance of play and interactive games to support play and learning at times that can be most challenging for parents – when waiting to see the doctor. Global learning company Houghton Mifflin Harcourt generously donated 7,500 books that will allow Reach Out and Read to supply even more books to children through their highly successful outreach program.

“Reach Out and Read Massachusetts is excited about collaborating with Boston Children’s Museum to provide playful opportunities for children and their caregivers in pediatric waiting and exam rooms throughout the Commonwealth,” said Alison Corning Clarke, Massachusetts Programs Director, Reach Out and Read. “The posters and accompanying books are attractive reminders to parents about the importance of play in child development.”

Pediatricians, nurses, physician’s assistants and other staff can use the posters to engage adults in conversations about the critical importance of play for children’s healthy development, learning, and overall well-being. All Reach Out and Read program sites received a letter from Dr. Anna Housley Juster and Dr. Michael Yogman of Boston Children’s Museum highlighting the core objectives of this project, American Academy of Pediatrics recommendations regarding play and children’s health and wellness, and easy ways families can support play in everyday life.

“We are thrilled to be collaborating with Reach Out and Read and ReadBoston to spread our core messaging about the importance of play for all children. The posters can inspire adults and children to play in ways that boost children’s literacy development through word play and imaginative storytelling,” said Anna Housley Juster, Ph.D. Sr. Director, Child Development & Community Engagement. “Through the Museum’s collaborations, we are actively engaged in supporting play and learning in children’s everyday lives - in the neighborhoods where children and families live.”

Through an exciting collaboration with ReadBoston, Boston Children’s Museum is also bringing opportunities for play and learning into several Boston communities. The Museum staff will partner with ReadBoston’s Storymobile program at the following locations during the months of July and August encouraging children and adults to participate in playful activities that strengthen literacy, math, and engineering skills. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt also generously donated 500 books including a Curious George title.

Fri 7/24    
Children's Quarters, 36 1st Ave, Charlestown
JFK Family Serv Ctr, 23 Moulton St, Charlestown

Tue 7/28    
Fidelis CCC, 10 Fidelis Way, Brighton
Brighton Library, 40 Academy Hill Rd, Brighton

Wed 7/29    
Yawkey CCC, 185 Columbia Rd, Dorchester

Fri 7/31    
Children's Quarters, 36 1st Ave, Charlestown
JFK Family Serv Ctr, 23 Moulton St, Charlestown

Mon 8/3
Little Folks Community Daycare, 65 Trenton St, East Boston
Harbor City School, 196 Putnam St, East Boston

Wed 8/5
Lower Mills Library, 27 Richmond St, Dorchester
Roslindale Family Engmnt Ctr, 695 Truman Hwy, Hyde Park

Thu 8/6    
Little Voices ECE, 104 Needham Rd, Hyde Park

“It is vital that all children have access to quality stories that build literacy skills while sparking imagination,” said Mary Cullinane, Chief Content Officer and EVP, Corporate Affairs, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. “We share Boston Children Museum’s commitment to inspiring curiosity through play, and we’re delighted to work in partnership with the Museum to deliver $80,000 worth of celebrated children’s books to young readers and families across Greater Boston through ReadBoston and Reach Out and Read.”

The Museum’s work in these local and statewide initiatives also allows the opportunity to spread the word about ways to save on Museum admission. Boston Children’s Museum works to be accessible to all children and their families with Target $1 Friday nights and $2 EBT admission.

About Boston Children's Museum
Boston Children’s Museum engages children and families in joyful discovery experiences that instill an appreciation of our world, develop foundational skills, and spark a lifelong love of learning. More information about Boston Children’s Museum can be found at http://www.BostonChildrensMuseum.org. Become a fan of the Museum on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Hours and Admission
The Museum is open daily from 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Tuesdays until 7:00pm (Through August 26) and Fridays until 9:00 p.m. Adults, $16, children (1-15) and senior citizens, $16; children under 12 months and Museum members are always free. Fridays 5:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m., all visitors $1.

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Jo-Anne Baxter
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