Stepping Stones Museum for Children Embarks on a Year-Long Tour of U.S. Regions

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In January, the museum's Around the World program will be exploring “The Trail West.”

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Around the World is part of the museum’s award-winning Global Connections Initiative and received the Promising Practice and Replication award from the Association of Children’s Museum and MetLife Foundation.

Stepping Stones Museum for Children has a New Year’s resolution: to offer more experiences, more fun, more learning and more family time. This year, they begin a trek across historic regions of the U.S. and start in January with “The Trail West.” Later this month, they will bring the sun, moon and stars to Norwalk, CT — an experience to teach everyone to look up in their everyday lives.

In 2015, Stepping Stones embarks on a tour of the United States with their "Around the World" program. Over 12 months, they will feature 12 exciting destinations. Each destination will be explored through programs such as the Performance Series, Creative Kids and a new experience, Show Me a Tale. Around the World is part of the museum’s award-winning Global Connections Initiative and received the Promising Practice and Replication award from the Association of Children’s Museum and MetLife Foundation.

In January, Stepping Stones will be exploring the “The Trail West” with different experiences for children and families to enjoy, including the following:

Sunday, January 11 — 1:30 pm
Around the World: Show me a Tale –
Listen to the Oregon folktale, “The Last Darning Needle,” and design a map using pre-prepped tea-washed paper. Tickets are required, and there is limited space available. The program is for children ages 5 and older.

Saturday, January 24 – 2:00 pm
Around the World: Performance Series
The Oregon Trail – A Tale of Westward Expansion
An 1850’s story of a 13-year-old girl’s experiences traveling by wagon train with her family from Independence, Missouri to the lush farmlands of Oregon. Period songs, costumes, props, journal entries and scenes all contribute to a tale of a remarkable journey, in which a vast and awesome wilderness is crossed and a new understanding of courage, perseverance and interdependence is gained through sharing difficult challenges with others.

Open Arms Accessibility Initiatives:
Every first Thursday of the month, the museum stays open late, from 5-8 p.m., with free admission and activities in their "Get Into It! Free" night.

Every second Saturday of the month, from 9-11 a.m., Stepping Stones offers complimentary admission for families with children who have special needs with "Accessibility Day."

New Exhibit:
Opening January 31, an incredible new exhibit comes to Stepping Stones. “My Sky” is funded by NASA and was created through a partnership between the Boston Children’s Museum and the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory.

“My Sky” is an exhibit about the universe, but it is also about everyone, and how the sky above impacts lives here on Earth. The sky is, after all, universal. It is something everyone shares. “My Sky” invites children and adults to explore the sun, moon and stars together in an immersive, inviting environment. Families are encouraged to "look up" not only when they visit the exhibit, but also in their everyday lives. “My Sky” gives families the chance to practice science skills like observing, communicating, noticing patterns, predicting, imagining and more — science skills that are fundamental to astronomy, and skills that scientists and engineers use every day.

The sky is also a source of endless inspiration for people from all walks of life, and “My Sky” introduces a few of these people. From scientists and astronomers who work to investigate and understand the universe; to artists and sculptors who create monuments and representations of the awesome and the serene; to writers and musicians who capture, through words and melody, the feelings that arise when we gaze up at the moon, or stare silently at the stars. The universe is inspiring. It is mind boggling. It is full of wonder. “My Sky” invites families to feel all of that.

“My Sky” has three main environments: a skate park, in which children explore the sun; a child's room, where visitors investigate the moon and the stars; and a backyard that offers experiences about the sun, moon and stars together.

Please check the full calendar online for the latest times and activities at the museum:
http://www.steppingstonesmuseum.org/calendar.
All Events and programs are free with museum admission unless otherwise indicated.

About the company:
Stepping Stones Museum for Children is an award-winning, private, non-profit 501 (c)(3) children’s museum committed to broadening and enriching the lives of children and families. Stepping Stones Museum for Children is located at 303 West Avenue, Norwalk, CT, exit 14 North and 15 South off I-95. Museum hours are: Labor Day through Memorial Day, Tuesday—Sunday and select holiday Mondays from 10 am-5pm; and Memorial Day through Labor Day, Monday-Sunday from 10 am-5 pm. Admission is $15 for adults and children and $10 for seniors. Children under 1 are no cost. For more information about Stepping Stones, to book a field trip or schedule a class, workshop or facility rental call 203-899-0606 or visit http://www.steppingstonesmuseum.org.

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Michael Peterson
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