Children's Museum Promotes Science to Head Start Participants

Sept. 25, 1997

In an innovative program geared to interest very young children in science, the Ollie Mae Moen Discovery Center will begin on Tuesday, Sept. 30, informal science education classes for children enrolled in Waco's Head Start program. The Discovery Center is the hands-on children's facility of the Strecker Museum Complex at Baylor University.

For 16 weeks, children ages 3-5 and their parents will have the chance to participate in simple science experiments both at the center and at home. On Tuesday nights from 6-8 p.m., the children will perform beginning science experiments that deal with such topics as purifying water, bubbles, fossils and which objects float and which do not. One set of experiments will involve growing plants in water or in dirt. At the completion of the experiment, children will take their plants home.

Additionally, each family will receive a "wonder kit" which contains instructions for basic science experiments that can be performed at home. The 60 kits will be equally divided between English or Spanish instructions, and the experiments will be different from but will build upon the experiments completed at the evening program.

"Not only does this program promote science, but it promotes families working and learning together," said Jill Barrow, director of the Ollie Mae Moen Discovery Center.

The science program is part of the Texas Statewide Systemic Initiative, a project run by the Charles A. Dana Center at The University of Texas at Austin. The initiative works with communities to provide their children with "a contemporary, intellectually rigorous and engaging education in mathematics, science and technology." The Ollie Mae Moen Discovery Center was selected as a hub site for the initiative.

For more information, contact Barrow at 757-0922.

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