Family Programs

Each week at Thanksgiving Point are tons of educational and fun activities for families of all ages and abilities! Our Family Programs include, Tales for Tots, Monday Night Activities, and Design Challenge, just to name a few. All activities are FREE for Thanksgiving Point Members, as they are included with venue admissions.

The programs are always adapting and changing throughout the year so check back often for updates. They are also led by our trained educational team to ensure each person at the activity has a great time learning and playing together as family and friends. Click each drop-down menu below to learn more about these one-of-a-kind educational opportunities at Thanksgiving Point and to see dates, locations, and times for each one. See you soon!

Join us for our hands-on storytelling adventures, Tales for Tots, held each Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday mornings at 11 am. Each day a new story is read followed by a fun activity that goes along with that story.

Monday  (June - October) –Ashton Gardens 
Tuesday – Museum of Ancient Life
Wednesday – Farm Country
Thursday– Museum of Natural Curiosity

 

Upcoming Schedule:

 

Museum of Ancient Life

December 20 | Snowmen at Christmas by Caralyn Buehner
It's Christmas Eve and people are snug in their beds, but something is stirring outside. Under the glow of moonlight, all the snow families are slipping away to gather in the town square for a night of caroling, dancing, and an exciting visit from the snowman Santa Claus.

December 27 | Stella, Queen of the Snow by Marie-Louise Gay
Winter was never so magical as in this marvelous book about Stella and Sam discovering a familiar landscape transformed by a heavy snowfall. Sam makes his very first snowstorm, and, as usual, he has lots of questions.

January 3 | If the Dinosaurs Came Back by Bernard Most
A newly hatched Emperor penguin wants more than anything to look like his tall, strong father. But when his own fluffy gray feathers start to fall out, Little Penguin is sure his wish will never come true.

January 10 | Trouble at the Dinosaur Café by Brian Moses and Garry Parsons
Everything is quiet in the Dinosaur Cafe until a big bully Tyrannosaurus bursts in, demanding more than vegetarian fare! After he threatens to put all the herbivores into a dinosaur stew, they decide to retaliate and call in their secret weapon – Terry Triceratops.

January 17 | Toby and the Ice Giants by Joe Lillington
Join Toby the Bison in this fact-filled adventure as he explores the Ice Age Tundra and meets some of the giants that roamed its icy surface. The inhabitants of this frozen landscape lived in some of the coldest conditions the earth has ever experienced. But before these giants grew to their great size, they were young and, like Toby, very, very inquisitive.

January 24 | How Do Dinosaurs Get Well Soon? By Jane Yolen and Mark Teague
What if a dinosaur catches the flu? Just like kids, little dinosaurs hate being sick. And going to the doctor can be scary. How DO dinosaurs get well soon? They drink lots of juice, and they get lots of rest; they're good at the doctor's, because doctors know best.

January 31 | Edward in the Jungle by David McPhail
Bookish young Edward spends all his free time reading anything he can get hold of. One day whilst reading in his favorite spot he becomes so absorbed that he fails to notice a crocodile coming right at him. What happens next will inspire the imagination of every reader, young and old!

 

Farm Country

December 21 | Froggy’s Best Christmas by Jonathan London
Froggy has never celebrated Christmas; usually he's taking his long winter's nap. But not this year! Froggy's best friend, Max the beaver, wakes him up to join the fun. Soon, Froggy's gotten into the swing of things: finding a tree, wrapping presents, singing carols, and enjoying a holiday feast. 

December 28 | It’s Snowing! By Olivier Dunrea
Baby is fast asleep when Mama spies the first flakes of his first snowfall. "It's snowing!" she sings. "Baby, it's snowing!" Mama bundles Baby in thick, warm furs. Then out into the snow they go, to see it, smell it, hear it, taste it, touch it―and play in it.

January 4 | Sunshine and Snowballs by Margaret Wise Brown
Explore the magical colors, sounds and sights of our natural world in spring, summer, autumn and winter through the eyes of a young boy and girl, brought to life with the stunning artwork of illustrator Charlotte Cooke.

January 11| Bear Snores On by Karma Wilson and Jane Chapman
Bear's cave fills with animal friends as he sleeps. One by one, a whole host of different animals and birds find their way out of the cold and into Bear's cave to warm up. See what happens when he finally wakes up and finds his cave full of uninvited guests—all of them having a party without him!

January 18 | The Little blue Truck by Alice Schertle
Beep! Beep! Beep! Meet Blue. A muddy country road is no match for this little pick up--that is, until he gets stuck while pushing a dump truck out of the muck. Luckily, Blue has made a pack of farm animal friends along his route. And they're willing to do whatever it takes to get their pal back on the road.

January 25 | Over the Arctic by Marianne Berkes
Over in the Arctic, the snow goose honks and the wolf howls. Children too will joyfully honk and howl while they count the baby animals and sing to the tune of Over in the Meadow. And they will hunt for hidden animals on each page.

Museum of Natural Curiosity

December 22 | Fancy Nancy Splendiferous Christmas by Jane O’Conner
This year, Nancy is especially excited about decorating the Christmas tree. She bought a brand-new sparkly tree topper with her own money and has been waiting for Christmas to come. But when things don't turn out the way Nancy planned, will Christmas still be splendiferous?

December 29 | The Mitten Adapted by Jane Brett
Grandmother knits snow-white mittens that Nikki takes on an adventure. Readers will enjoy the charm and humor in the portrayal of the animals as they make room for each newcomer in Nikki’s lost mitten.

January 5 | Where Do Balloons Go? By Jamie Lee Curtis
Haven't you ever wondered ...Where do balloons go when you let them go free? It can happen by accident. It happened to me. Do they tango with airplanes? Or cha-cha with birds? When one little boy accidentally let go of his balloon, his imagination takes him on its journey.

January 12 | Astronaut Handbook by Meghan McCarthy
DO YOU HAVE what it takes to be an astronaut? Take a ride on a comet and learn how it feels to be weightless. Have your measurements taken for your very own space suit? Meghan McCarthy has created the perfect book to share with children who want to be astronauts when they grow up.

January 19 | If I Built a Car by Chris Van Dusen
Young Jack is giving an eye-opening tour of the car he'd like to build. There's a snack bar, a pool, and even a robot named Robert to act as chauffeur. With Jack's soaring imagination in the driver's seat, we're deep-sea diving one minute and flying high above traffic the next in this whimsical, tantalizing take on the car of the future.

January 26 | Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty
Rosie may seem quiet during the day, but at night she's a brilliant inventor of gizmos and gadgets who dreams of becoming a great engineer. When her great-great-aunt Rose (Rosie the Riveter) comes for a visit and mentions her one unfinished goal--to fly--Rosie sets to work building a contraption to make her aunt's dream come true.

 

Bring your tots and enjoy a fun morning of exploring music and movement at the Museum of Natural Curiosity and Farm Country.  Led by our education staff, Melody Makers is the perfect opportunity for little kids to dance and move in a fun and friendly environment.  Included with regular venue admission.

Tuesdays at 11 am: Museum of Natural Curiosity
Thursdays at 11 am: Farm Country

 

Upcoming:

Museum of Natural Curiosity

December 20 | Sleigh Bells Ring
Join us for music time with seasonal songs about snow, reindeers and sleigh rides. Make the festive season even more exciting as we “jingle all the way” with a make and take instrument made with bells. 

December 27 | Musical Sounds
Jingle, shake, tap, rap, ding-a-ling, join us today as we explore the many sounds we can make with instruments.  Sounds can make music exploration fun and inventive. Then make a water bottle shaker that looks like it’s snowing inside it.

January 3 | Count it Out
Count it out! Learn songs about numbers today like One, Two Buckle My Shoe and songs like Ten Little Fingers. Learning numbers can be a lot of fun. We will make a wrist shaker today.

January 10 | Wiggle and Giggle
It’s time for silly songs today. Try to make a funny face, make a silly sound or try a few silly phrases as we sing, dance and play to silly songs. Wiggle and giggle and join us for fun and games through songs. Make an instrument with cups.

January 17 | Going to the Zoo
We will be featuring music to explore the many types of animals you might see at the Zoo. Swing back and forth like a gorilla, clap like a seal, jump like a kangaroo and join in as we have fun pretending. Make a rain shakers today.

January 24 | Move to the Beat
It’s time to move to the beat and shake it up. Move, clap and make a beat to various rhythm patterns as we use shakers, maracas and drum sticks to enhance the music. The take home instrument today is a mini maraca.

January 31 | Sounds with Air
What instruments make sounds by using air? What does a flute sound like? How about a trumpet or horn? Come today and find out how to make sounds by blowing air into them. Make a Kazoo to take home.

 

Farm Country

December 22 | Let It Snow
Make the season bright as we learn to sing Fa, La, La, La fashion. You can also hear and explore different sounds and tempos with a variety of holiday songs. 

December 29 | The New Year
Pots and pans can make a lot of noise when bringing in the New Year but add in voice amplifiers and sound makers for a new twist on an old tradition. Make your own noise makers and ribbon wands.

January 5 | Line it Up!
Learn a line dance today as we sing, dance and jig it out to country songs. It’s time to say Howdy Partner as you dance to a traditional song called The Chicken Dance. Today we are making a rhythm tapper.

January 12 | Around Town
Learn the actions to Wheels on the Bus and many other songs as we learn about transportation - trains, cars, rockets and more. Make a castanet to take home.

January 19 | Music and Play
Come sing and play with us today as we learn to make shapes with ribbon wands, make a beat with our drum stations and dance to a variety of music. The make and take today is a bead tambourine.

January 26 | On the Farm
Old MacDonald had a farm and we love all the animals on his farm. Come explore with us as we learn songs about the many animals you can find on a farm including BINGO the farmer’s dog. Make a rhythm instrument today with a pencil and a cup.

It’s not every day you could meet an alligator or greet a skunk. Animals are all around us, some live in your backyard, some live far away, but all are important to our world. Come get up close and personal with some of the most interesting animals you will meet as we explore some of the curious critters that make our world wonderful.

Second and Fourth Saturdays of each month at 11 am: Museum of Natural Curiosity
First and Third Thursday of each month at 4 pm: Farm Country

 

Upcoming:

Farm Country

January 5 | Winter Fun
How do animals at the Farm stay warm? Every animal has a different way of living in the cold. Come visit with the animals to make sure they are all ready for the cold winter days

January 19 | We’re Expecting!
If spring is the time for babies, winter must be the time for babies to grow in their mother’s womb. Come to the Farm to learn all about the baby animals who will be arriving when the weather warms up.

 

Museum of Natural Curiosity

January 14 | Featuring Clint’s Reptile Party
Whether you love or are scared of reptiles, this is a program for you. You will meet fascinating animals and learn why they are so important to the environment. You can see them from a distance or get right up close, maybe conquering your fear and learning to appreciate all they have to offer.  

January 28 | Featuring Wild Wonders: Unhuggables
Need we say more? For this week’s Curious Critters, come meet a few animals you wouldn’t want to hug. Can you guess which ones they might be?

Have you ever wondered about winged warblers? Have you been curious about carnivorous condors? Come explore at our Birdosity program. Discover the life of birds, brush up on your identification skills and learn about a variety of bird related topics. Whether you are an eggs-pert or have a new found love of birds, Birdosity is a program the whole family will enjoy.

First & third Saturday of each month at 10:30 am: Museum of Natural Curiosity
Second Saturday of each month at 10:30 am: Museum of Ancient Life

 

Upcoming

Museum of Natural Curiosity

December 17 | Birdie Feet!
Bird's feet are quite unique. They can grab, waddle, and even help birds walk on water! Come learn all about the amazing world of bird feet!

January 7 | Impressive Builders!
Come explore the possibilities when it comes to birds and their impressive construction skills! Discover the tools they need and use to build their complex and useful homes- and learn what to do when you come across an abandoned bird home!

January 21 | How Eggsiting!
A lot of science and biology plays into the shape, color, and location of birds' eggs! You'll be able to discover why eggs are the size they are  and the shape they are- and even the color they are!

 

Museum of Ancient Life

No Birdosity in January to accommodate another event.

Featuring new activities each week, Monday Nights at Thanksgiving Point focus on a single theme with various activities designed to entertain and educate the whole family.

January, February, March: Museum of Ancient Life
April, May, September, October: Farm Country
June, July, August: Ashton Gardens
November, December: Museum of Natural 
Curiosity

Upcoming

Museum of Natural Curiosity

December 19 | All About Art - Winter Themes
What is your best holiday memory? Come create a holiday ornament that highlights your best holiday memory.  Make a mosaic, create a masterpiece and discover more with ART.

December 26 | Trading Post 101
What is a trading post? How does it work? Do you know what to trade? Where to trade? Come learn these answers and more as we learn all about the Trading Post at the Museum of Natural Curiosity.

Museum of Ancient Life

January 2 | Dino Discovery
Come explore our Dynamic Dinosaurs! Go on a wild safari through the museum to find all of our prehistoric friends. Then you can discover, create, and name your very own dinosaur.

January 9 | Paleontology 101
Come be a paleontologist for a day! Make a field journal, practice recording your findings, hunt for your favorite fossil, and learn what takes to be a paleontologist. Then, join us in a dinosaur scavenger hunt—what will YOU find?

January 16 | Head Games
Have you ever wondered what a head looks like on the inside?  What about the skull?  Examine skulls and fossils of all shapes and sizes.  Even design your own!  What will your head look like? 

January 23 | Prehistoric Oceans
Take a closer look at the ancient oceans!  What was around 520 million years ago.  Check out the amazing trilobites and ammonites, as well as other ocean creature from later periods.

January 30 | Fossil Fieldwork
Have you ever wanted to go fossil hunting? Get a taste of the experience as we explore grid patterns, molding and casting, fossil excavation and the tools of the trade.

 

Looking for a fantastic Friday night activity? On the first and third Friday of every month from 5:30-7:30 pm, get your game on with a variety of classic and new board games during our Family Game Night. Family Game Night is a family-focused evening for kids and parents of all ages. 

First & Third Friday of each month at 5:30 pm: Museum of Natural Curiosity

 

Upcoming

December 16 | Life Size Pac Man
The whole family can play this giant version of Pac-Man. Collect as many dots as possible as Pac-Man, or chase Pac-Man as Pinky, Blinky, Inky, or Clyde.

January 6 | Paper and Pen
How many games can you play with just paper and a pen? Join us tonight as we doodle, draw, write, and play with only a pen and paper.

January 20 | Observation Games
What can you see when you look closely? Tonight you’ll have to use your observation skills to make matches and find hidden pictures with games like Spot It and Blink.

 

Come have fun while innovating! Design Challenge is a Museum program that gets everyone engaging in the engineering design process. Make a team with your family  and join us! Up to eight teams may compete at each challenge. It is free to compete and all supplies will be provided but if you wish to take your project home there will be a small fee to cover the cost of supplies. Come ready to design, build, test and prototype a solution to a given problem. The top three winners for each challenge will receive a trophy and every team will receive a participation certificate.

Third Saturday of each month from 2-4 pm: Museum of Natural Curiosity

 

Upcoming

January 21 | Paper Tower Contest

Come and see if your team can build the tallest freestanding tower using only paper and tape. It seems easy but watch out, or your tower will fall! Start thinking about the different aspects of great architecture. Design Challenge is held every third Saturday from 2:00-4:00 pm. The challenge will run from 2:00-3:30 pm. Judging will run from 3:30-4:00 pm. Winners will be announced and trophies will be awarded at 4:00 pm. (Starting in 2017 the Design Challenge will no longer be an at home experience.)

 

Do you know the people in your Neighborhood? What are their jobs and hobbies? Come meet a diversity of guests at Thanksgiving Point and get to know them and their passions.

Dates and locations vary, see below for details. 

 

Upcoming

*no programs are scheduled at this time.  Please check back soon*

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