Virtual Tours of Science Museums

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Virtual Tours of Science Museums

Chicago Museum of Science and Industry
Chicago Museum of Science and Industry. Bruce Leighty/Photolibrary/Getty Images

Does your child love science? Wouldn't you love to be able to visit science museums that have so much to offer? Fortunately, many science museums have virtual tours, allowing people to explore the museum exhibits from their computers or they may provide science activities and projects for kids, teachers, and parents. That makes them idea for homeschoolers and parents who need to supplement their child's learning at school.

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Chicago Museum of Science and Industry

Chicago Museum of Science and Industry
Chicago Museum of Science and Industry. Bruce Leighty/Photolibrary/Getty Images

The Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago is the largest science museum in the Western Hemisphere. It is also the oldest one, having opening in 1933. Their interactive Web site has games and apps to help visitors learn about many different aspects of science. One app is the Virtual Heart, based on the museums, 13 foot heart display. One game is "Simple Machines," which invites kids (and adults) to create... simple machines! The site also includes videos and activities. Visitors can watch a video of baby chicks hatching (a favorite exhibit), and activities include learning how to extract DNA from a strawberry or other foods and cooking food with the sun.

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San Francisco Exploratorium and Science Museum

Facade of a rotunda, The Exploratorium, San Francisco, California
Facade of a rotunda, The Exploratorium, San Francisco, California. Glowimages/Getty Images

The San Francisco Exploritorium has a wealth of information to explore online. They have many activities, websites, and activities to explore on 26 different topics, including the mind, chemistry, time, water, language, life science, geology, and many other topics. Your science-loving child will love this site. You will no doubt enjoy it as well.

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Teachers Try Science (New York Hall of Science)

New York Hall of Science
New York Hall of Science. Barry Winiker/Photolibrary/Getty Images

The Teachers Try Science site from the New York Hall of Science is less of a tour of the museum and more of an excellent resource on science for teachers, homeschoolers, and parents who just want to supplement their child's school lessons. Sometimes our science-loving kids just don't get enough science at school. You can find lessons on a variety of science topics and also select the for age and length of lesson (less than one hour to over eight hours).

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London Science Museum

The London Science Museum
The London Science Museum. Feargus Cooney/Lonely Planet Images/Getty Images

The online science pages from the Science Museum in London provide a wealth of information on a number of topics. You and your child can learn about the Information Age, medicine, climate science, genetics, the large hadron collider, and more. Just type in a typic to search for and look for stories, object, people, or videos. It's the next best thing to being there. The site also has games and apps that your child will enjoy.

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The Tech Museum of Innovation

The Tech Museum of Innovation
The Tech Museum of Innovation. Hisham Ibrahim/Photographer's Choice/Getty Images

The Tech Museum has some online exhibits on genetics. You and your child can find out what genes all living organisms have in common, how we see color, how to extract DNA from a strawberry, and more. At one time, the museum had more online exhibits, but after a change in their Web site design, they are no longer on the site. However, thanks to the "wayback machine," you can still access those many wonderful exhibits, including a robot zoo and exhibit on earthquakes.

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Canada Science and Technology Museum

Canada Science and Technology Museum
Canada Science and Technology Museum. D. Gordon E. Robertson/ Wikimedia Commons

The Canada Science and Technology Museum has some Try This Out! pages that provide sixteen fun and educational experiments and activities that you and your child can do at home. They include subjects like magnets, lights, water, motion, the solar system, and properties of gooey substances. What child can resist that last one? 

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The Computer Museum

Obsolete mainframe super computers in computer museum
Obsolete mainframe super computers in computer museum. Johm Humble/Image Bank/Getty Images

The Computer Museum got its start in 1975, years before the era of the personal computer! It has an interesting history, starting out as the Digital Computer Museum in those early years and becoming The Computer Museum in 2000. You can read through descriptions and look at pictures of the exhibits. One exhibit, "The Walk Through Computer," has a video, with some teens going through the exhibit and learning about the parts of a computer and how they work. It's rather old (has a track ball and floppy disk), but the information is still accurate, discussing the hard drive, the CPU, video port, and more.

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