Museum Playland: Los Angeles Kid Spaces for Playful Learning

Sure, there are a plethora of parks and playgrounds in Los Angeles. But where can you take your kids for some child-focused play that will also teach them about diversity, artistic expression, environmental stewardship, or the Earth?

We’ve got you covered with some targeted activities all over the city that will keep your tot on track to playful learning.

Kidspace Children’s Museum

Is it a playground? A museum? A water park? The versatility of this space, designed and conceived by CalTech graduates, is just what makes Kidspace so great. Your kids can learn painting, explore the natural world, identify rocks, swap leaves for sea shells, and launch a bottle rocket.

The Physics Forest, Greenhouse and Imagination Workshop (where donations of everyday materials become the basis for useful art projects) are just a few of the highlights for kids to explore. Classes and summer camps give children a chance to dive in even deeper. The Early Childhood Learning Center gives youngsters up to three a chance to play without the pressure of older kids around.

Parental Perks: Workshops for parents, free family nights, and ready-made dinner for four to take home from the Spot Gourmet, the on-site cafe, make this a great all-day play date.

Peekaboo Playland

Kids up to eight years old will enjoy cartoon-character exhibits, climbing spaces, reading nooks for the bookish, the ubiquitous and all-hallowed bounce house, and award-worthy puppeteering at Peekaboo Playland, an airy, bright space where kids can explore while parents relax.

Parental Perks: A pass includes all-day access, with in-and-out privileges and adult entry is free. Coffee and Wi-Fi are provided on-site, so you’ll never get tired; or bored… Right!?

Zimmer Children’s Museum

Children will adore this two-story museum devoted to teaching kids cultural appreciation, care for the community, and global citizenship. Museum activity spaces are devoted to identity and diversity with exhibits like Mann Theatre, Rhythms of the World, and Discovery Airport. There are hands-on lessons in philanthropy and restoring the planet at Tzedakah Pinball, Wishing Wall, Waterways, and Community Park. As well, kiddos will learn respect, dignity, and compassion for others in the Aid and Rescue Center, Main Street, or Construction Zone.

A VIB (Very Important Babies) lounge is available for infants, and tots under three can romp in a water table and bounce house especially for their age group. Teachers at the space can give you other ideas for your tiny tikes.

Parental Perks: Blue Bagel Cafe opens up those tiny taste buds with world-wide cuisine options. Themed summer camps give you permission to head out for a shopping spree while you know your kids are in good hands.

Discovery Cube

A science center and play space devoted to teaching kids STEM proficiency skills, Discovery Cube is a place for hands-on participation and demonstrations geared at making children active learners. Clifford the Big Red Fog, Curious George, hockey players, and massive climbing walls are all here to help.

Exhibits make learning about environmental stewardship fun by creating recycling and eco-friendly grocery shopping games, taking kids on a journey through the earth’s geological layers and viewing the beautiful but sometimes desolate landscape of Southern California in a simulated helicopter tour.

Cube Jr. is a place for the younger set – five and under – to learn language acquisition skills and number concepts, with help from parents, to prepare them for school days.

Parental Perks: All-day parking is free at the space, there are a variety of membership discounts, and many after-school programs are free.

Pretend City Children’s Museum

Venture south of the border (the border with Orange County, that is) to a city just for kids. Pretend City is made up of all the places adults go – the bank, grocery store, park, gas station, etc. – but on a miniature level, developed with the goal of creating targeted play that connects individuals and families to their communities.

The dream of Pretend City is for the next generation to expand their definition of “neighbor,” and to understand their place within the context of community. This uniquely targeted world of play seeks to “build better brains.”

Traveling exhibits teach kids about different cultures and people through immersive experiences.

Parental Perks: Free annual health screenings, parenting workshops, membership benefits, and healthy snacks at the Real Cafe are par for the course at Pretend City.

Do you have a favorite museum playspace in your town? Share them with us in the comments below!

Tags : travel   Los Angeles   California   

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