Under the Big Top: Math & Art {Buell Children's Museum, Pueblo}

I was looking for something else entirely whilst online a couple of weeks ago when I came across a teeny little button ad for the Buell Children's Museum in Pueblo.  Of course, I had to click on it and see what it was all about, knowing that Pueblo is all of about 30 minutes from where we live on Fort Carson.  So I clicked.  And saw this:

It sounded perfect for F&B to check out, but with only one small problem.  The exhibit in question closed on June 1st and it was already the last week of May.  Thankfully, the kids have been out of school since Memorial Day, so we decided to go on May 30th just to make sure we could see it.  It was definitely a worthwhile decision.

The outside courtyard at the museum was quite lovely in its own right.  The kids fell in love with the carousel horse, the tall flower windmill, and the parade of children statues, before we even got into the museum.  Had we planned ahead, we would have brought a snack to eat outside as the weather was cooperating with us too.

After exploring the courtyard for a bit, we headed inside, to check out the exhibits.  The museum is two floors, with a large part of the lower floor being a great open room that housed the math exhibits.  There is also a theater on the lower floor, then upstairs is another large area that held plenty of art activities.

We opted to check out the main exhibit first, which is based on the Toymaker's Math Carnival.  The whole room was decorated as a carnival theme and the kids both took off to see what they could find.  Despite a whole room of exhibits, Faith discovered the dress up corner and immediately dressed up as a clown.  Put a stack of costumes in front of the girl and she'll be content for hours.  Ben, however, decided to take a much better look around and found the Picky Parrot fraction game, which he spent quite a bit of time with.  The Grumpy Monkeys were my favorite, mostly because I have my own two little grumpy monkeys, and we were all a bit partial to the Puppy Party, since puppies are quite popular around here.

The kids spent close to an hour in the downstairs area exploring the Math Carnival, then we headed upstairs to check out art areas.  For my two, we hit the jackpot on the arts and crafts options.  There were many small set ups, showing types of art, artists, samples of their work and ideas for how to create your own (i.e. how to draw a Tim Burton scene).  There was also a huge open room with art supplies galore--craft pieces, collage materials, markers, paints, glue, just about everything you could want to create with.  The three of us decided to spend another hour and a half just crafting.  Both kids made a few different projects, and I even got in on the act (see yesterday's Birds post for my creation).  Faith made a couple of collages, Ben made some cards, and we just enjoyed the crafting without messing up my kitchen part!

By the time we finished our art, we were getting low on time, so wandered down to the theater area where the kids built block mazes with the big foam block pieces and raised balls through them until it was time to go.  They did love the blocks, think large foam Tinker Toys that the kids could maneuver without assistance.  I really think they could have spent yet another hour in that room alone.

The verdict?  We loved the museum and are so glad we went when we did, since this particular Math & Art exhibit was scheduled to be over as of June 1st.  The bonus?  The next exhibit is "Calling All True Blue SuperHeroes" so we know we will be back again soon!