Life-Sized, Bilingual â€œStorylandâ€ Exhibition and â€œStorywalkâ€ to Open in Conjunction With a New Permanent Play Bookstore Exhibit
GLENVIEW, IL â€“ This fall, Kohl Childrenâ€™s Museum will present three new reading-focused exhibits specifically designed to encourage literacy for young children. The temporary exhibit â€œStoryland: A Trip Through Childhood Favoritesâ€ allow kids to immerse themselves in a life-sized world of seven award-winning childhood favorites, while â€œSheridanâ€™s Books and Crannies,â€ a new permanent exhibit, will reinvent the Museumâ€™s â€œPlay Library.â€ Â The third element, Storywalk, will be installed as part of the Museumâ€™s two-acre outdoor Habitat Park.Â The activity will combine literacy, physical activity and an engagement with nature as guests follow pages of the storybook â€œLeavesâ€ by David Ezra Stein.
All three dynamic exhibits will encourage children to build literacy skills through imaginative, interactive experiences and dramatic play that focuses on vocabulary, print motivation and awareness, narrative skills, letter knowledge and phonological awareness.
In addition, the Museum plans to participate in the national â€œRead for the Recordâ€ Day on October 3, in which schools, libraries, and other institutions nationwide will spotlight the importance of early literacy by collectively reading a single book, â€œOtis,â€ by Loren Long.
â€œWith the arrival of these three engaging exhibits, we are highlighting our mission of fostering a love of learning in children, particularly through promoting literacy, one of the Museumâ€™s key focal points,â€ said Sheridan Turner, President and CEO of Kohl Childrenâ€™s Museum. â€œStudies consistently prove that reading with your children at very young ages helps develop vocabulary and grammar skills, a sense of story structure, even basic directional skills such as how English letters and words read from left to right. Quite simply, the more parents read with their children, the better they will do in school.â€
â€œStoryland: A Trip Through Childhood Favoritesâ€ will be on display at the Museum from October 1, 2013 â€“ January 6, 2014. Created by the Minnesota Childrenâ€™s Museum, the exhibit transforms seven beloved and award-winning picture books â€“ â€œThe Tale of Peter Rabbitâ€ by Beatrix Potter; â€œThe Snowy Dayâ€ by Ezra Jack Keats; â€œWhereâ€™s Spot?â€ by Eric Hill; â€œIf You Give a Mouse a Cookieâ€ by Laura Numeroff; â€œChicka Chicka Boom Boomâ€ by Bill Martin Jr. and John Archambault; â€œAbuelaâ€ by Arthur Dorros and â€œTuesdayâ€ by David Wiesner â€“ into three-dimensional and bilingual (English and Spanish) play and learning environments that highlight the six pre-reading skills defined by the Public Library Association and Association for Library Service to Children, a division of the American Library Association: disposition to read, print awareness, letter knowledge, sound awareness, vocabulary and narrative skills and comprehension.
As part of the exhibit:
- Families can immerse themselves in the world of â€œThe Tale of Peter Rabbit,â€ one of the best-selling childrenâ€™s books of all time. Children explore Peter Rabbitâ€™s world as they build vocabulary and narrative skills while searching for Peterâ€™s lost belongings, harvesting vegetables and playing in Peterâ€™s burrow.
- Visitors will get a mouse-eye view of super-sized elements from â€œIf You Give a Mouse a Cookie,â€ such as a big glass of milk, as they are encouraged to create new and rhyming words by matching letter magnets to word trunks.
- â€œThe Snowy Dayâ€ welcomes visitors to Peterâ€™s wintry world, where a young boy explores his neighborhood after a fresh snowfall. Children have opportunities to build print and sound awareness, as they build a snowperson, and explore wintry sounds and words.
- Babies and young toddlers can experiment with busy wall interactives based on â€œWhereâ€™s Spot?â€ a well-known board books about the search for Spot the dog. Parents can get tips about cultivating pre-reading skills in very young children.
- Young children explore the alphabet and letter and sound awareness while navigating three tropical islands featured in â€œChicka Chicka Boom Boom.â€ Families will also enjoy creating rhythms with steel drums while playing along with the rhythm of the story.
- Children can sharpen their narrative skills and vocabulary by delivering news from inside a television and searching for hidden frogs in â€œTuesday,â€ a story about a town mysteriously visited by flying frogs.
â€œStoryland: A Trip Through Childhood Favoritesâ€ is presented by Target and has been generously locally sponsored by Wells Fargo.
â€œSheridanâ€™s Books and Cranniesâ€ will also open October 1, 2013 as a new permanent exhibit, reinventing the museumâ€™s current â€œPlay Libraryâ€ exhibit as a pretend bookstore. This new and improved exhibit will feature an inviting reading loft, various comfy reading nooks where kids can snuggle up to read, and a regularly-changing array of childrenâ€™s books and periodicals. The exhibit will also include a variety of activities to promote literacy. These interactive elements include learning writing motions (tracing basic shapes used in letters with their fingers in pre-set grooves), rhyming spinners (finding words and pictures that rhyme), magnetic sorting (collecting things that start with the same letters into bins with magnets), and a small performance space with a costume trunk and magnet walls so kids can create their own stories and then act them out.
â€œSheridanâ€™s Books and Cranniesâ€ was underwritten by the Souder Family Foundation. W. Fritz Souder served on the Museumâ€™s Board of Trustees for eleven years, including two years as chair from 2009 â€“ 2011.Â He also chaired the Museumâ€™s Building Blocks for the Future capital campaign to build the Museumâ€™s current facility in Glenview. Souder suggested the name of the new exhibit as a tribute to the years of dedication and effort of Sheridan Turner, who has served as the Museumâ€™s President and CEO since 1999. Additional support for this exhibit was received through the Public Museum Capital Grants Program, Illinois Department of Natural Resources and Illinois State Museum.
â€œStorywalkâ€ will open by October 1, 2013 as a temporary exhibit in Habitat Park, the museumâ€™s two-acre nature park on the museumâ€™s campus. â€œStorywalkâ€ will consist of 18 child-height stands placed throughout the park, each displaying two pages of â€œLeavesâ€ by David Ezra Stein. The placement of the stands allows children and parents to progressively read a book as they meander through the garden walk, combining the focus of literacy, physical activity and engagement with nature in a fun and unconventional setting. â€œStorywalkâ€ was developed in conjunction with the Glenview Park District and Glenview Public Library after the success of two previous â€œStorywalkâ€ exhibits in Gallery Park in Glenview.
About Kohl Childrenâ€™s Museum
In recognition for its outstanding exhibits and impact on Chicago land families, Kohl Childrenâ€™s Museum was recently named one of the countryâ€™s Ten Best Childrenâ€™s Museums by Parents Magazine. The Museum was ranked sixth out of more than 300 childrenâ€™s museums nationwide and was the only Chicago area museum recognized.
Offering 17 interactive, hands-on exhibits for children ageâ€™s birth to 8, the Museumâ€™s mission is to encourage young children to become effective learners through self-directed complex play. Kohl Childrenâ€™s Museum is located at 2100 Patriot Blvd., in Glenview, Ill. at the corner of Patriot Blvd. and W. Lake Ave. in the newly redeveloped area known as The Glen. The Museum can be easily reached by public transportation, including Pace bus and Metra trains.
For more information, visit the Museumâ€™s website at www.kohlchildrensmuseum.org or call (847) 832-6600. The Museum is open on Monday from 9:30 a.m. to 12 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday, 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. Special members-only hours are from Monday through Saturday, 9:00 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. Admission prices are $9.50 for children and adults and $8.50 for senior citizens. Children under 1 year old and members are free.