For Immediate Release: October 9, 2008
Contact: Megan Fischer
Marketing and Public Relations Manager
(401) 273-5437 ext. 126
Return to Press Room
Photos available upon request

Play Power Exhibit Opens at
Providence Children’s Museum

October 28, 2008

Play Power, a major new exhibit celebrating the power of children's play, opens at Providence Children’s Museum on Tuesday, October 28.  Kids will experiment, explore, invent, imagine and, of course, play as they investigate air, light, magnets, motion and sound.  The message?  Play is powerful!

One of the Museum’s core convictions is that play is vital for children's healthy development. Through spontaneous, freely chosen play, children develop confidence and learn problem solving, self-regulation, conflict resolution and other significant skills.  But kids today lack time and space to play.  With school standards, busy schedules and parents' safety concerns about outdoor play, children are spending more time in front of television and video screens, activities that do not have the benefits of unstructured, child-directed play.  Recently there’s been national attention to the importance of playtime, most notably in an American Academy of Pediatrics 2007 clinical report, which states that “…play is essential to the cognitive, physical, social, and emotional well-being of children and youth." 

Active, imaginative play happens throughout the Children’s Museum, but Play Power is about play.  This vibrant new learning environment will engage kids and grown-ups in creative activities that vividly illustrate the importance of open-ended play.  Visitors will construct contraptions that send balls rolling down ramps, ringing bells and spinning wheels.  Sensory experiences abound as kids create original musical compositions at an inventive sound sculpture and transform an intriguing domed play space with interlocking geometric blocks and tubes. 

As kids build magnetic mazes, propel objects through air tubes and explore other playful phenomena, a resource nook will encourage parents and caregivers to reflect on their own play memories and to appreciate their child’s play.  Play Power is designed to increase parents’ understanding of the value of child-directed play, and the message throughout the exhibit is that if you really watch children play, it’s clear that a lot of important learning is going on.

Providence Children’s Museum is closed September 2 - October 27 to install Play Power and complete extensive building renovations. The Museum and new exhibit open October 28 at 9 AM.  As part of the Play Power opening celebration, visitors join a special series of programs throughout November that promotes the power of hands-on play.  

Play Power and extensive renovations to the Museum’s historic building are the first of several important advancements as part of the Play Works Campaign for Kids.

As of October 28, Providence Children’s Museum will be open Tuesday through Sunday and Monday school holidays, 9 AM to 6 PM and selected Fridays until 8 PM. Museum admission is $7.50 per person; admission is always free for Museum members. The Museum is located at 100 South Street in Providence’s Jewelry District. Call (401)273-KIDS or visit