Our favorite LA museums may currently be closed, but that doesn’t mean your kids can’t still experience a little of what they have to offer at home. With free live stream videos, fun DIY projects and interactive maps, places like the Petersen Automotive Museum, California Science Center and more are offering ways to make learning fun (and little easier on you) while schools are shuttered. Read on for the details.

photo: Creative Commons

Stuck-at-Home Science from California Science Center
Biology class may be on hold, but kids can still learn how roots carry water to trees, discover the different parts of a flower and more, courtesy of the California Science Center, which already has six downloadable activity guides on its site and will continue to add more.

Building Activities, Live Stream Videos & More from Petersen Automotive Museum
Got a car-obsessed tot at home? The Petersen has really stepped up during the lockdown, providing a slew of online activities for kids of all ages. In addition to free downloadable coloring sheets (Lightning McQueen makes a pit stop here), fun worksheets and building projects, the museum is also offering educational live streams twice daily, where kids can learn how to make a balloon car or design their own license plate.

Art Projects from Norton Simon Museum
Scroll down the Teacher Resources page from Norton Simon Museum to find a list of art projects you can do at home. A couple of our favorites for younger kids? Pattern Play using recycles materials, and Pop-Up Summer, which you can modify and create with scrap paper—one of our go-to materials for kids crafts. (Get more scrap paper ideas here.)

Rain Cloud in a Jar from Kidspace Children’s Museum
While we’re missing this museum’s springtime caterpillar adoptions, the folks at Kidspace are still doing their part to keep kiddos entertained. Check the blog for projects like Rain Cloud in a Jar, which you can do with just a little shaving cream, water, glass or plastic container and liquid water color or food coloring.

Soil Test in a Jar from Natural History Museum
Get your hands dirty and learn about the soil in your backyard with this quickie project from the Natural History Museum. Kids can also become a naturalist right outside their house, snapping pics of insects, plants and more and adding them to the museum’s L.A. Nature Map. You can zoom in on your neighborhood to check out what others have observed too.

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–Shannan Rouss

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