The Mid-Hudson Children's Museum is the ideal destination for families with young children. We celebrate childhood and are proud to offer exhibits that get kids moving, exploring, building, pretending, collaborating, creating and discovering.
Our exhibits focus on nature, science, literacy, art, music and community and allow children the opportunity to develop foundational learning skills.
Four exhibit galleries help families connect in meaningful ways through purposeful play.
New Exhibition! Early Learning Junction
This dynamic learning space is specifically designed to encourage the development of critical school readiness skills in children ages 4 and under.
Early Learning Junction invites young children to climb, crawl and scoot their way through the multi-level, interactive “Train Station.” Along the way, children will encounter several interactive air-play exhibits, can crank discs up a conveyer belt to a larger-than-life plinko board, explore textures and discover new hide-away spaces. And while it may look like a mega-playscape, the “Train Station” is much more, with exhibits that promote skills such as sharing, communication, problem-solving and gross motor coordination – all developmental areas that are critical to school readiness.
The exhibition also features an enormous custom-built train table to encourage sharing, communication, fine motor coordination, and imaginative play. Other exhibits in the Early Learning Junction include “Hudson Hills,” which is a series of vertical ball race tracks, a “Discovery Table” that features rotating hands-on activities, a reading nook and block-building area.
Early Learning Junction was developed by The Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum to support its School Readiness Initiative.
Developed with funding from the United Way of the Dutchess-Orange Region and the Dyson Foundation, Early Learning Junction exhibition opened the door for a new collaborative partnership between the Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum, the Smithsonian Early Enrichment Center (SEEC) in Washington, D.C., and several local pre-K programs. Through this partnership, children ages 3-5 attending these pre-K programs are coming to the museum for free programming and play, and families receive free memberships to the museum so parents and caregivers can use the museum as a resource to encourage school readiness in their children.
Young children LOVE the big blue blocks of Imagination Playground! Using Imagination Playground blocks, kids build a new world every day. They make objects like animals, rocket ships and robots. They make imaginary places like houses, factories and cities. They make new dramatic scenarios, settings and games to play. Most important, they make the rules.
Because Imagination Playground is child-directed and open-ended, it encourages self-expression through deep joyful play.
Unstructured, child-directed play is a critical component of healthy social, emotional and intellectual development. Unlike toys and games, Imagination Playground blocks don't dictate to children the way they're meant to be played. There is no right or wrong way to play with them, which means even the youngest child can make their own open-ended fun!
Imagination Playground is a mobile exhibition which means it can invite adventure anywhere! Look for this dynamic play space to "pop up" in the museum, outdoors in our pavilion, on the lawn at the park, and at local festivals.
The purchase of this exhibition was made possible with the generous support of TEG Federal Credit Union.
Fun 2 ,3, 4!
Fun 2, 3, 4! invites families to explore the fun side of math through hands-on exhibits that introduce measuring, estimating, counting and calculation in sometimes zany ways. “How Many is a Million?” challenges visitors to be the first to topple a glass by spinning gears one million times. “Super Bowl” is the exhibition’s own skee ball arcade game that introduces basic graphing. Children can even “Measure the Dino” with their own feet.
Fun 2, 3, 4! strongly supports the museum’s new school readiness initiative by introducing young children to core mathematical concepts and providing opportunities for them to develop early problem-solving and communication skills. The Fun 2, 3, 4! exhibition includes 16 hands-on exhibits!The purchase of the exhibition by the Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum was made possible with generous support from IBM.
Bake a cake, build a house, shop for groceries, or respond to (pretend) emergencies - all in RiverTown. Featuring playful, kid-sized shops and storefronts full of engaging activities and play areas, families can celebrate the diversity of the people who live in towns and cities throughout the Hudson Valley. In RiverTown, children and adults role-play the activities of the culturally diverse merchants and business people of our community.
Bake a cake, build a house, shop for groceries, or respond to (pretend) emergencies - all in RiverTown. Featuring playful, kid-sized shops and storefronts full of engaging activities and play areas, families can celebrate the diversity of the people who live in towns and cities throughout the Hudson Valley. In RiverTown, children and adults role-play the activities of the culturally diverse merchants and business people of our community.RiverTown was created in partnership with the New York State Council on the Arts, and the Institute of Museum and Library Services.
Hyde Park Mastodon
The Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum is proud to feature a fully intact, re-constructed replica of a twelve-foot tall mastodon that lived during the Ice Age. Our Mastodon is an exact replica of the perfectly preserved skeleton that was found just three miles up the road from the Museum in Hyde Park. What makes this exhibit really special is that it invites children to climb up next to the mastodon from “inside a giant tree trunk” and look the mastodon right in the eye – or, rather - the eye socket.
Development and installation of the Hyde Park Mastodon Exhibit was made possible with the generous support of the New York State/DEC Estuary Program, the Hudson River Foundation and the Dyson Foundation.
The Hudson River Dive Bell
Enter the dive bell and descend to the depths of the Hudson River to see what is under all that water. View live Hudson River fish through the portals. Manipulate a real robotic arm as you try to catch fish and then return them to the watery depths. Peer through the periscope and view the real Hudson River flowing by the museum.
The Hudson River Dive Bell was created with support from the Institute of Museum and Library Services.
And, there is much to explore. Join us for a day of play and discovery!