The interactive imagiNATIONS Activity Center welcomes families with children to explore unique learning experiences and activities on a first-come, first-served basis. Native peoples have always used the natural environment around them to meet their needs, and today many of their innovations and inventions are part of daily life for millions worldwide. Visitors to the center can explore some of these ingenious adaptations through a variety of hands-on activities.
- Grab your imagiNATIONS passport at the entrance and start your adventure learning about Native cultures!
- Activities are organized around themes and there is no order in which they need to be completed. You can start anywhere!
- Weave a giant basket to learn about styles of basketry; explore modes of transportation, such as snowshoes and skateboards; sit inside a full-size Comanche tipi to learn about Comanche life and the buffalo; and discover the adaptability of Native architecture.
- In the Cradleboards and Crawlers pop-up room, infants and toddlers can practice motor skills, engage with objects for new sensory experiences, and play! Space is limited.
- Read books about Native cultures and by Native authors in the story room.
- Create art projects to take home in the craft room.
- Facilitators and volunteers are available to assist and engage to ensure that everyone is playing safely. Ask a facilitator if you have questions about how to get started or need assistance working with the activities.
- Visiting the imagiNATIONS Activity Center is FREE.
Group Visits to the imagiNATIONS Activity Center
Activity Center Hours for Student Group Visits
Thursday & Friday: 10 AM–1 PM (registered groups only)
Tuesday–Friday: after 1 PM (walk-in groups welcome)*
Saturday: 10 AM–4 PM (walk-in groups welcome)*
Sunday: 11 AM–3 PM (walk-in groups welcome)*
*Non-registered groups are welcome to visit during walk-in hours; however, due to space restrictions, it may not be possible to accommodate large groups at one time.
- Registration is required for group visits on Thursdays and Fridays, October 15–May 1, 2020, excluding federal holidays.
- Group visits to the imagiNATIONS Activity Center are limited to Pre-K through 3rd-grade groups.
- Registration is for 30-minute timed increments (Thursday and Friday, 10:15–10:45 AM; 11–11:30 AM; 11:45 AM–12:15 PM; 12:30–1 PM).
- Each group will receive a 10- to 15-minute guided program within their registered visit.
- Registrations can accommodate 30 students per timed entry; a minimum of 10 students is required for group registration.
- For groups Pre-K–3rd grade, the museum requires one (1) chaperone for every five (5) students.
- Registration is required for groups of more than 40 during walk-in hours.
- Walk-in groups are self-guided only. All walk-in groups must adhere to the 5:1 chaperone ratio and 30-minute timed entry.
More Family Activities at the Museum
After visiting the imagiNATIONS Activity Center, explore the museum's exhibitions and galleries with your family using The Great Inka Road Activity Guide, Our Universes Family Guide, and Americans Gallery Discussion Guide.
Join a Cultural Interpreter for an interactive, hands-on experience at one of the museum's signature red teaching carts. These five- to ten-minute programs repeat on demand and highlight exhibition themes in relevant and personal ways. Explore technology that contributed to the spread of Indian imagery, vertical agriculture in the Andes, American Indian treaties, games, and more. Locations and times vary; visit the Welcome Desk for more information.
Looking to extend the learning? Native Knowledge 360° offers educational resources and online lessons that provide a richer and more inclusive discourse about American Indians.