Sponsors

This exhibit is made possible with generous support from:

Children need the freedom to appreciate the infinite resources of their hands, their eyes, and their ears, the resources of forms, materials, sounds and colors.
Loris Malaguzzi

Early childhood educator, founder of the Reggio Emilia Approach

hands-on components

  • 7-foot diameter Water Mover – Turn a large water wheel to draw water from a basin and watch it pour into a channel system, a nod to retrieving water from natural bodies of water like rivers and lakes.
  • Dam Building
  • Water Vortex
  • Rain Meander – Water falls from above via a translucent, serpentine sculpture, capturing the natural beauty and joyful experience of playing in the rain.
  • Magnetic Water Wall
  • Build-a-Fountain
  • Hand Pump – Pump water from reservoirs below the floor by hand, simulating techniques used to access ground water
  • Shaved Ice Tables
There are many opportunities to get wet from head to toe in Waterplay. Smocks are available, and visitors are welcome to bring a change of clothes or bathing suits. Please use the bathrooms located on this floor for changing.

The water in Waterplay is treated with bromine for sanitization purposes.

the art

Waterplay frequently displays works by artists. Current pieces include:

  • Rain Meander by Stacy Levy
  • Beetle Mania by Joan Danziger
  • Watercolor Mural by Tracy Hiner, Black Crow Studios
  • Saravin Cans by Jasper Johns
  • Around the Pond — Arcadia by Atticus Adams

tips for before and after your visit

play with real stuff.

How are the pipes like the plumbing in our homes? Where can you see whirlpools in nature and in our homes? What about locks, dams and fountains?

try new things.

If you have visited us before think of new ways to approach old favorites. Float down the river. Make a couple of different boats. Which sails better? Investigate the science behind water. Explore how gravity affects water pressure by building a pipe system. What do you see? How can you influence the flow of water?

think ahead.

Talk about water-related careers and job responsibilities. What does a plumber or boat captain do? What about a life guard, a sanitation engineer or a fisherman? What other water-related jobs can you think of?

How are the pipes like the plumbing in our homes? Where can you see whirlpools in nature and in our homes? What about locks, dams and fountains?

If you have visited us before think of new ways to approach old favorites. Float down the river. Make a couple of different boats. Which sails better? Investigate the science behind water. Explore how gravity affects water pressure by building a pipe system. What do you see? How can you influence the flow of water?

Talk about water-related careers and job responsibilities. What does a plumber or boat captain do? What about a life guard, a sanitation engineer or a fisherman? What other water-related jobs can you think of?

design matters

Waterplay was remodeled by the CMP design staff in 2013 with an eye to accessibility and  Universal Design principles which take into account people of diverse abilities. Services and environments that have been designed in this way are highly marketable, inclusive and can be used by everyone, to the fullest extent. – making water available in multiple ways and helping visitors tap into a variety of sensory and physical experiences to explore the principles of water.

There are wet experiences and dry experiences; multiple types of physically interactive spaces; active zones where visitors engage in large motor skill activities; quiet zones where visitors engage in sensory experiences; and a dedicated zone for educational programming.

Low bamboo walls and grated ramps divide the space, define edges and help with orientation. The ramped walking surface creates a continuous circulation path between zones.  A change in flooring distinguishes the wet area from the dry area, helping visitors understand where they are in the exhibit.

supporters

This exhibit is made possible with generous support from:

  • EQT_logo

    Presenting Sponsor

  • Major Sponsor