New Children’s Science Center quickly brings STEAM together

Opening at the end of 2022, Minot’s Magic City Discovery Center will stimulate curiosity and creativity

For a child, a rainbow is a work of art: bright colors, blending into each other, forming a magical arc across the sky.

As a child grows and learns science, their perception of the rainbow changes, says Liz Weeks, director of education and outreach for North Dakota. Magic City Discovery Center—a combination children’s museum and science center slated to open in the town of Minot in late 2022.

Informed by science education, the child will look at a rainbow and see not just pretty colors, but the light scattered through the raindrops, its wavelengths reflected from different angles to produce different tints. The rainbow becomes a feat of art and science.

It’s exactly this type of learning – learning that illuminates a child’s world – that the Magic City Discovery Center will offer when it opens later this year.

According to the Association of Children’s Museums, North Dakota is the latest state to open a full-scale children’s museum. The 28,000 square foot facility will offer more than 150 exhibits and interactive programs designed to stimulate curiosity and creativity from babies to youngsters up to 14 years old.

“Learning opportunities will focus on STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and math) to spark children’s interest in these areas,” says Weeks.

“Our programs will support classroom instruction, provide additional learning elements in science and math. I hope we inspire them to consider careers in engineering, science and the trades,” she adds.

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For kids unable to make it to Minot in the north central state, the Magic City Discovery Center will come to them, carrying a trailer full of portable STEAM activities and exhibits.

A mobile activity is the Invention Story Mobile Kiosk, a portable multimedia kit with custom software to document children’s learning on video to share with family and friends and inspire other children.

Enbridge Fueling Futures Program helps build safe, vibrant and sustainable communities. Recognizing the kiosk’s value in developing the potential of young learners near and far, we provided a $50,000 Fueling Futures grant to the Magic City Discovery Center to help purchase equipment and develop the mobile Invention Story kiosk.

Wendy Keller, executive director of the Magic City Discovery Center, says the kiosk has significant benefits, and not just because the portable kit can travel to remote areas of the state.

Once children have participated in a program – perhaps building a load-bearing bridge with toothpicks or building a circuit – they will step in front of the camera to explain their work, contributing to a video that highlights their story. learning for the world.

“Making videos and sharing their learning will give kids confidence and self-esteem. And because they talk about what they’ve created, because they’re sharing their story, it might inspire someone else,” Keller said.

“Another kid might see the video, and that young kid might say, ‘Maybe I can do this? Maybe I can solve a problem?’ ”

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