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Introduce your children to science in their every day lives.  The library has hundreds of science books of all levels to help you bring science home.  In addition, visit one of our suggested locations below. Please contact us if you have a suggestion for a link we can add.

Museums

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Shenandoah Valley Discovery Museum

A small science based museum designed just for the preschool and elementary aged child. Located in Winchester, VA, it makes a great day event and well worth the drive.

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Smithsonian's Natural History Museum's Q?rius jr Discovery Room

The Natural History Museum is a full day of fun and exploring with lots of terrific exhibits. Be sure to visit Q?rius jr., the Discovery Room. It is a hands-on room featuring real Museum objects and artifacts. Visitors can look at fossils, skulls, shells and minerals, use a microscope, try on costumes from around the world and much more!

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Port Discovery Children's Museum

This is a huge museum full of fun activities for kids, including science play.

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Maryland Science Center

The Maryland Science Center has lots of hands on activities, great exhibits and a planetarium! Be sure to check their calendar for family fun activities.

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Smithsonian's Air & Space Museum

Two locations! Visit this museum on the National Mall and also the Udvar Hazy Center where they have flight simulators you can experience....you can land on the moon in a 3D simulator!

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Science Museum of Virginia

Located in Richmond, VA, this is a fantastic, kid-friendly science museum.

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Spark!Lab

Draper Spark!Lab, the popular hands-on invention experience from the Smithsonian’s Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation in the National Museum of American History. Children between the ages of 6 and 12 will create, collaborate, explore, test

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Children's Science Center

Children's Science Center Lab provides fun, interactive exhibits, activities, and programs for children, families, and school groups to explore science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) hands-on.

Zoos & Farms

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The National Zoo

Don't forget the indoor houses for cold and rainy days!

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The Reston Zoo

A small, managable zoo that makes it easy for kids to roam and see it all. Feeding the animals and pony rides available as well.

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Kidwell Farm at Frying Pan Park

A working farm with a large variety of animals to visit. Check their site for when the babies animals are born in the Spring.

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The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore

This zoo may be farther and more expensive than the National Zoo, but a few animals can be seen only here, including rhinos, polar bears & chimps.

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Leesburg Animal Park

The Leesburg Animal Park is a great yet inexpensive way to have fun with the family. They have pony rides, giant tortoises, lemurs, wagon rides and much more on 21 acres of fun.

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Oxon Hill Farm at Oxon Cove Park

Join in on the typical farm day activities, learn about the dairy cow and other farm animals, or take a wagon ride through the natural areas of the park.

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Catoctin Wildlife Perserve & Zoo

This zoo is worth the drive (easy distance for a day trip) and the entrance fee. Not as big as the National Zoo, but bigger than most private zoos, they have unique animals we've found no where else.

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The Virginia Living Museum

Zoo and aquarium in one, The Virginia Living Museum is unique in that it has only Virginia species! Located between Williamsburg & Norfolk, it is an easy day trip from VA Beach or Richmond.

Aquariums

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The National Aquarium Baltimore

A grand experience with tropical terrestrial habitats in addition to aquatic. Skip the dolphin show...it is not worth the additional cost.

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Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center

This aquarium rivals Baltimore in all it has to offer. Although it isn't a day trip from the DC area, it is certainly worth a stop if you are in the Virginia Beach area.

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The Virginia Living Museum

Zoo and aquarium in one, The Virginia Living Museum is unique in that it has only Virginia species! Located between Williamsburg & Norfolk, it is an easy day trip from VA Beach or Richmond.

Planetariums

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Arlington Planetarium

The Arlington Schools Planetarium is open for public multimedia programs throughout the school year on Friday and Saturday evenings and Sunday afternoons.

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Alexandria Planetarium

T.C. Williams opens up its doors to the Alexandria Community one night of every month during the school year for a free hour-long show designed to bring the mysteries of the Universe down to Earth.

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Rock Creek Park Planetarium

The Young Planetarium program is an introduction to the night sky for the youngest of astronomers. It is a shortened version of their Autumn Night Sky Program. Ages 4 and older.

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Smithsonian's Einstein Planetarium

Located in the National Mall's Air & Space Museum, this planetarium takes space travel to new heights. The Einstein Planetarium has been upgraded to include a first-of-its-kind, Sky Vision

Botanical Gardens

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The United States Botanical Garden

Botany at its best...explore all kinds of plant environments inside the museum and wander the outdoor gardens as well. Replicas of the main buildings on the Mall and a wonderful train exhibit during the holidays make this botanical garden worth the trip!

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The National Arboretum

The National Arboretum serves the public need for scientific research, education and gardens that conserve and showcase plants to enhance the environment.

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Brookside Gardens

Brookside Gardens is Montgomery County's incomparable, award-winning 50-acre public display garden situated within Wheaton Regional Park. Included in the gardens are several distinct areas; azalea garden, rose garden, children's garden, formal garden, fragrance garden, Japanese style garden and trial garden. The garden also features two conservatories for year-round enjoyment.

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Meadowlark Botanical Gardens

Beauty, conservation, education and discovery flourish throughout the year at this 95 acre complex of large ornamental display gardens and unique native plant collections.

Nature Centers

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Huntley Meadows Park

Explore the wetlands of Huntley Meadows. A stroll through the woods leads you to boardwalk that takes you over a beautiful marsh. See turtles, frogs, snakes, a large variety of birds, all kinds of insects and more. A wonderful family outing.

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Arlington County Nature Centers

Arlington County Nature Centers provide visitors with hands-on, educational opportunities to understand and appreciate our natural resources. Each site features interpretive exhibits housed within a nature center, and woodland trails.

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Fairfax County Nature Centers

There are a variety of activities at each of the Fairfax County Nature Centers: E.C. Lawrence (Chantilly), Hidden Oaks (Annandale), Hidden Pond (Springfield), Huntley Meadows (Alexandria), River Bend (Great Falls), Cub Run (Chantilly).

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Alexandria City Nature Center

At the Jerome Buddie Ford Nature Center, you can see live animals up close and learn about the cultural and natural history of Dora Kelley Nature Park.

Butterflies

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Brookside Garden's Wings of Fancy

This is the largest local live butterfly display. Open during the summer only.

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Smithsonian's Butterflies + Plants: Partners in Evolution

Located in the Smithsonian's National History Museum, this live butterfly exhibit is open year round and is FREE on Tuesdays!

TV Programs

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Wild Kratts

Join the adventures of Chris and Martin Kratt as they encounter incredible wild animals, combining science education with fun and adventure, while traveling to animal habitats around the globe.

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The Dinosaur Train

Dinosaur Train embraces and celebrates the fascination that preschoolers have with both dinosaurs and trains. The series encourages basic scientific thinking skills as the audience learns about life science, natural history and paleontology.

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The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That!

The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That! is designed to spark a love of learning and an interest in science in preschool-aged children.

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Sid the Science Kid

Sid the Science Kid is an educational animated television series using comedy to promote exploration, discovery and science readiness among preschoolers.

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Magic School Bus

Based on the best-selling Scholastic book series, The Magic School Bus is the longest running children's science television series ever.

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Mama Mirabelle's Home Movies

This is a kid-friendly nature documentary series in which an animated elephant (Mama) answers the questions of the local animal youngsters by showing them her home movies from around the world. A perfect balance of cartoon storyline with real science and real animals.

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Zoboomafoo

Brothers Chris and Martin Kratt and the irresistibly playful lemur Zoboo explore the wondrous lives of creatures and the world in which we all live. A lively mix of formats - from live-action to claymation - create a fun and energetic learning environment where young viewers get their first introduction to animals.

Science At Home

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Spark!Lab Activities

Try this at home! Fun activities from the Spark!Lab

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Science at Home - Maryland Science Center

A list of experiments you can do at home with step-by-step instructions.

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Steve Spangler Science

Steve Spangler's site has an extensive list of science experiments you can do at home. They are conveniently organized by category to help find the perfect activity for the day!

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Zoom Activities from PBS Kids

Check out this list of science activities. This includes a symbol to indicate which activities help the environment.

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Science Bob!

Easy experiments you can do at home.

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Science Experiments for All Around Your Home!

Science experiments categorized by the room of your house! Pick a room: bathroom, living room, backyard, etc. and then pick and experiment!

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Car & Vehicle Science Projects

All kinds of physics projects for your vehicle-loving child!

Links For Kids

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PBS Games

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Switcheroo Zoo

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National Geographic Kids

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Animal Fact Guide

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The Children's Butterfly Site

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Ology