The dog days of summer are here. (Remember yearning for days like these during the polar vortex?) Now, it’s hot and sticky outside, and you and the kids need to beat the heat. Escape to one of the city’s amazing (air-conditioned) museums and galleries. Not only will you and the kids cool off, but, best of all, these exhibits – from Marvel superheroes to Play-doh sculptures to indoor waterfalls – will ignite your kids’ imaginations.

Get Inspired by Kid Artists

The Art: This summer both the Children’s Museum of the Arts and the Metropolitan Museum of Art are staging two exhibits where the spotlight shines bright on kid artistes. CMA’s “Focus: Artist As Observer” has culled together new masterpieces along with those from its permanent collection – all created by kids. Uptown at the Met, “P.S. 2014” is the annual juried show that selects the best artwork by NYC public schoolchildren. Full of paintings, sculpture and even animation, both celebrate these future Picassos’ artistic journeys and self-discoveries.

Fun for Kids: Kids will get inspired by seeing artwork hanging on the walls by artists their own age. The art is colorful, playful, and - in the parlance of our kids’ times - awesome.

Insider Tip: The Met show is located on the ground floor by the children’s library. You can enter by going through the underground parking lot, which, by the way, is the best way to enter the Met if you have a stroller.

Go: Children’s Museum of the Arts
103 Charlton St., West Village
Phone: 212-274-0986
Exhibition Dates: Now through Sept. 7, 2014
Hours: Mon. & Wed., 12-5 p.m.; closed Tues.; Thurs. & Fri., 12-6:00 p.m.; Sat. & Sun., 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Cost: $11/person; pay what you wish on Thurs., 4-6 p.m.
Metropolitan Museum of Art
1000 Fifth Ave., Upper East Side
Phone: 212-535-7710
Exhibition Dates: Now through Aug. 24, 2014
Hours: Sun.-Thurs., 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m.; Fri. & Sat., 10 a.m.-9 p.m.
Cost: Recommended $25/adult, free for kids under 12.

What art exhibit have you taken your kids to this summer? Share your favorite in a Comment.

-Alice Perry

All photos by Alice Perry