Tuesday, August 27, 2013

A Colorful Morning at CuriOdyssey

An excited girl 'building it up' at the CuriOdyssey science & wildlife center

Nieve and I decided to spend a morning together at CuriOdyssey Coyote Point. It had been more than a year since our last visit and Nieve was excited to enjoy some of her favorite exhibits.

A nice little example of diffraction

Feeling the fog

Though the center is small it's a fun place for a three-year-old to explore. There are a mix of things for children to do, with most of the activities being either physical sciences or animal exhibits.

Learning about gears and levers to move a polycarbonate ball around a track

More actuating levers to move the ball along

Gravity is great - Nieve seemed to enjoy Rube Goldberg-like machines

Nieve enjoyed both sides of the center. She liked working through various mechanical and optical exhibits, observing what happens when she activates levers or gears. When she couldn't figure out what was happening she would ask for an explanation.

Nieve cracked up at the speed and playfulness of the otters

A happy girl trying to communicate with the little mammals that could not keep still

She also enjoyed watching the animals, with her favorite being the rambunctious river otters. We spent more than 15 mins in front of the glass, laughing from surprise by the swift moving mammals.

A busy girl building

"Eye see you!"

But what really captivated Nieve's interest were stations where she could build something. She loved transforming construction materials into her own grand creations. The more building blocks she could get her hands on the better. She also seemed patient and effective at managing problems that arose (deviations from her desired design); I was impressed at how well she worked through various set-backs.

Using hollow plastic pipe to create her on aquaduct

Nieve used the half-pipe to form a water-catching gutter that protected her piles of sand from erosion

For instance, while working at a water & sand table, the water kept dispersing the sand Nieve piled under the falls. Instead of giving up she used some pieces of plastic to better direct the water and shield her sand piles. It took time but her solution proved both practical and effective. The engineer in me was pleased to see her so engaged in the process; I hope she continues to develop a love of problem solving!

1 comment:

Holly Teetzel said...

What a fun place to spend the morning. I bet the best part of it all for Nieve was spending one-on-one time with dad. Priceless :-)
Very cute pictures, too!