Located in the northern New Jersey town of Paramus, not far from Manhattan, The New Jersey Children's Museum is a facility that caters to young children ages one to eight and their families. Concentrating on hands-on, interactive exhibits that appeal to children's short attention spans, the museum is a favorite with locals and visitors to the area.
Reasonably priced, with group rates available to schools, scout troops, and other organizations, the New Jersey Children's Museum is small but offers a wide variety of permanent exhibits that children love. In all, there are 30 different play-and-learn areas here, each with a different emphasis.
Many of the exhibits allow kids to explore "grown-up'' jobs. Visitors can climb aboard a real 1954 open cab fire truck, ring its bell, and pretend their heading to a fire. Or they can explore space and aviation with a visit to a real Hughes' helicopter and a mini version of NASA's space shuttle. There's also the opportunity to play hospital in one of the museum's many galleries, with dress-up clothes available so that children can pretend to be a doctor, nurse, or other healthcare worker. An onsite mock TV studio lets kids read the news and report the weather while seeing themselves on television. A construction zone also offers life-sized equipment for the child who strives to be a builder or just loves playing in the dirt.
Other exhibits echo the experiences of everyday life. At the Kid's Pizzeria, the child becomes the server and presents family members with their pretend pizza creation. At the New Jersey Children's Museum Grocery Store, visitors learn how to shop for items to create healthy and good-tasting meals. At the post office, children can drop off pretend letters or learn the tasks of a U.S. mail carrier. And little girls might enjoy learning how to dance with the instructional video at the museum's mock ballet studio.
There is also plenty of make believe at Paramus' New Jersey Children's Museum. Kids can visit The Wild West and dress like a cowboy, check out a Sioux teepee, or pet a real stuffed bison. At the Dinosaur Cave, they might make cave drawings or dig up old fossils. At the Medieval Castle, children will love dressing up like knights or princesses.
There's also a giant train set and several science-based hands-on exhibits that welcome little hands to touch and explore.
Throughout the year, The New Jersey Children's Museum sponsors a variety of workshops and special events. Many pay tribute to upcoming holidays or special days, including Halloween, Earth Day, Mother's and Father's Day, and others. Most of the workshops include hands-on activities such as craft making. There's also a morning breakfast club that meets on a weekly basis, welcoming moms and their pre-schoolers.
Parents may also schedule themed birthday parties at the museum. The facility provides all that is needed for the event, including food and cake. Access to the museum is included in the party fees.