living a well tended life... at any age

in the ‘hood

I don’t know who was happier on this trip – me or the boy.

The New York area definitely has its share of children’s museums, but I only recently learned that there was one in Brooklyn – and it turns out that it’s the oldest children’s museum IN THE WORLD! Once I got over my shame at not knowing this sooner, I took a look at the web site.

It looked to be quite awesome, so off we went.

And it was.

The museum was founded in 1899 and renovated 4 years ago. It is an enormous building, housing over 30,000 objects in their permanent collection, including fossils, masks and vintage toys.

Lots of easy street parking placed us right across the street from the building’s bold, bright yellow exterior. I like to get the lay of the land before we start exploring and the team at the front desk was super friendly and helpful in suggesting where Noah and I should begin.

We entered the central part of the museum through a long tunnel (called a “People Tube”). Noah loved this and was content to run back and forth under the neon lights for quite some time.

brooklyn children's museum

I finally convinced him to come out the other side and take a look around.

We started in “Neighborhood Nature”.

There was a hands-on water feature,

brooklyn children's museum

brooklyn children's museum

and lots of tanks filled with all manner of fish, lizards and turtles.

brooklyn children's museum

Next we explored “World Brooklyn”, featuring typical shops that one would expect to find in the immediate neighborhood.

brooklyn children's museum

An Italian pizzeria.

brooklyn children's museum

And an Afrikan bookstore, to name a few.

There was also a fully stocked grocery store with a working conveyor belt. And of course, produce bins (remember how much Noah loves things-in-bins?). Heaven.

brooklyn children's museum

We finished up in the “Totally Tots” area (for children 5 and under), containing a large water pond filled with buckets, tools and toys (and most importantly, smocks).

brooklyn children's museum

There were different levels for climbing up and down and needless to say Noah loved this the most.

brooklyn children's museum

brooklyn children's museum

brooklyn children's museum

After lunch (there is a large cafeteria upstairs) we checked out the greenhouse and garden.

Noah made a friend in the greenhouse.

brooklyn children's museum

And as the day was unseasonably warm we spent some time in the large children’s garden, where Noah was able to run,

brooklyn children's museum

water some plants,

brooklyn children's museum

and water some more.

brooklyn children's museum

A stop at the gift shop for some bin-organizing (you thought I was kidding?),

brooklyn children's museum

and we called it a day.

brooklyn children's museum

Was it fun?

brooklyn children's museum



  1. Jennifer Cullen on March 28, 2012 at 6:57 am

    Sounds like a great day! The smiles on both of your faces in the last picture say it all. But, of course, I want to know what did you have for lunch??

    • sheri silver on March 28, 2012 at 7:31 am

      You’re so funny…….Noah’s tendency to “graze” rather than actually eat means that “lunch” is a mixed bag (literally) of cheeses, dried fruit, nuts and whole grain crackers. Non-negotiable, however, is that these trips include at least one really indulgent snack. Pickings were slim at the museum (which I suppose was appropriate as it IS a children’s museum…) so it was potato chips for Noah and a bag of M&M’s for me! 🙂

  2. Leslie on March 28, 2012 at 7:50 am

    Museums for kids are so much fun! It’s neat to see how much you are enjoying Noah. 🙂

    • sheri silver on March 28, 2012 at 7:20 pm

      I know – I think so too!

  3. Lisa Sperling on March 28, 2012 at 8:38 am

    Isn’t it fun to find hidden gems like this! Wow – the oldest children’s museum in the world – that’s really impressive! It looks like so much fun! I loved taking our almost 14 month old neighbor boy to the children’s museum here in Madison – it’s brand new and full of adventures. Like Noah, he loved playing with the water toys and I can’t wait to take him again. I’m adding this to my “things to see in NYC” list (if I should ever go there with kids in tow ;)). I got the list idea from you and am adding to it, as I find fun insider tips from around the blogosphere – thank you for getting me started on that 😉

    • sheri silver on March 28, 2012 at 7:20 pm

      Anytime – let me know if you ever come in!!

  4. Melanie on March 28, 2012 at 8:43 am

    It looks like you guys had so much fun! I love the picture of the two of you at the end of the post. So happy! xo

    • sheri silver on March 28, 2012 at 7:19 pm

      Thanks so much – it was a great day! 🙂

  5. Sandra on March 28, 2012 at 2:04 pm

    So do you think my six year old daughter would like it? I keep meaning to take her there when we visit NYC but it’s hard getting out of Manhattan! Silly, I know…

    • sheri silver on March 28, 2012 at 7:21 pm

      I think she would – problem is that it’s deep into Brooklyn – not really near anything else you’d be seeing, especially if you are not in for very long!

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