Media Room Strategic Initiative Science Learning

$25,000 Grant from Santa Clara County Open Space Authority Connects Families to Nature

September 10, 2018

Local children and adults will gain skills in how to enjoy and participate in outdoor recreation thanks to “Happy Trails.” This innovative program launched by Children’s Discovery Museum and funded by Santa Clara Valley Open Space Authority aims to narrow the “nature gap” by removing barriers for inner-city families. According to CalEnviroScreen, an analysis of California communities and the environment, some of the most environmentally disadvantaged communities are within a five-mile radius of the museum and likely lack exposure to the positive health benefits of nature. This program intends to change that. Read More

Community Service Learning, Early Childhood Development, Environmental Stewardship, Partnerships & Resource Development, Science Learning

Oracle Helps Ignite Passion for Scientific Inquiry and Environmental Stewardship

June 13, 2018

More than 1,000 students rolled up their sleeves and pant legs and got their hands and feet wet while learning first-hand about water quality, the protection of plants and animals, and qualities that make up a healthy watershed, thanks to a $25,000 contribution from Oracle for BioSITE, the museum's award-winning program. Read More

Environmental Stewardship, Partnerships & Resource Development, Science Learning

Local Hero and Former Astronaut Steve Smith to Receive Legacy Award

May 1, 2018

This year's Legacy for Children Award honoree is out-of-this-world. Former astronaut and local resident Steve Smith is a remarkable role model who inspires young people to pursue their dreams with confidence, tenacity, and courage. After four rejections from NASA, Smith was accepted into the astronaut program at age 33. At 35 he traveled into space and became one of America's most experienced astronauts who now captivates audiences around the country as a motivational speaker. Read More

Early Childhood Development, General Museum, Partnerships & Resource Development, Science Learning

Nature NOW! Bill’s Backyard Opens Oct. 29

Red Tricycle
October 22, 2017

Go outside and play. This sentiment is often at odds with the valley's tech-heavy culture, especially in the Bay Area. To encourage kids to put down their devices and engage with the outdoors, Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose recently doubled its exhibit space to add a new outdoor exhibit, Bill’s Backyard: Bridge to Nature, and it’s the tree house and dig pit of childhood dreams. Every detail was meticulously planned from the living roof on the junior ranger station to the life-sized bronze animals hidden throughout the exhibit. Read More

Early Childhood Development, Environmental Stewardship, Exhibition Development, General Museum, Partnerships & Resource Development, Science Learning

Seventy-five Charming Third Graders Help Dedicate Bill’s Backyard

The Mercury News
October 20, 2017

The same kids who tossed seeds into a patch of dirt last November burst through a commemorative ribbon and helped dedicate the museum's new outdoor space, Bill's Backyard: Bridge to Nature, on Thursday. Mayor Sam Liccardo, Santa Clara County Supervisor Ken Yeager, and representatives from the visionary donors including Open Space Authority Santa Clara County, the California Coastal Conservancy, FIRST 5 Santa Clara County, and Agilent Technologies were among many who were on-hand to mark the occasion and speak about the importance of this new outdoor learning environment to children and the entire region. Read More

Early Childhood Development, Environmental Stewardship, Exhibition Development, General Museum, Partnerships & Resource Development, Science Learning

Low Tech High Thrills at the Purple Museum

South Bay Accent
October 15, 2017

Executive Director Marilee Jennings talks with South Bay Accent about everything from the early days of the museum to the latest and largest capital project since opening in 1990 - Bill's Backyard. San Jose's newest outdoor learning environment is primed for hours of exploration, discovery, and creativity for all ages, especially inquisitive youngsters. Read More

Early Childhood Development, Environmental Stewardship, Exhibition Development, General Museum, Partnerships & Resource Development, Science Learning

Executive Director Marilee Jennings Talks with Bay Area Focus

KBCW Bay Area Focus
October 8, 2017

Marilee Jennings joined Michelle Griego, host of KBCW's "Bay Area Focus," to talk about Bill's Backyard and why the museum is venturing outdoors with a half-acre outdoor learning environment focused on environmental and science learning - and, of course, lots of discovery and exploration for children and families. Read More

Early Childhood Development, Environmental Stewardship, Exhibition Development, General Museum, Science Learning

Nature Inspired Space Opens at Purple Museum

Bay Nature Magazine
September 25, 2017

Come play outside. That's what the museum hopes families will want to do in Bill’s Backyard: Bridge to Nature, the new outdoor exhibit space. It's intentionally designed as a hybrid between a playground and a nature park, where children can choose their own adventures, and parents can feel comfortable letting them. The half-acre exhibit includes large tree-shaped structures connected by sky bridges, a grassy hill and slide, a dig pit, and a fort-building area suitable for forts or fairy gardens. Read More

Early Childhood Development, Environmental Stewardship, Exhibition Development, Science Learning

Children Become Little Scientists in Science + You Exhibit

October 9, 2017

Thanks to support from AbbVie Foundation, kids can become little scientists and discover the world of science in a fun, hands-on way. The exhibit offers a child-sized laboratory where kids can learn about working in a clean environment as they prepare to put on a lab coat and explore the role science plays in keeping the body healthy. The exhibit features tips about healthy eating and active living with plenty of role-playing including making nutritious soup in the "Test Kitchen," learning how antibodies help defeat germs, handling materials safely using the "Glovebox," and getting a magnified view of both natural and man-made objects using the "Wentzscope," and more! Read More

Early Childhood Development, Health Promotion, Science Learning