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Wilmington Children's Museum awarded $5,000 grant for new outdoor technology exhibit

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WILMINGTON, NC (NEWS RELEASE) -- The Children’s Museum of Wilmington was selected among a distinguished group of 15 museums worldwide to receive the 2014 Promising Practice Awards Reimagined — including a $5,000 grant from the MetLife Foundation and Association of Children’s Museums.

“This exceptional grant allows us to add a technological component to our outdoor play space that will encourage parents and children to use their smart phones and tablets for nature-inspired educational tools,” says Executive Director Richard Lawson. Lawson accepted the award May 16 at an awards ceremony in Phoenix, AZ.

The Children’s Museum of Wilmington was selected for its revamping of the Outdoor Learning Environments area. The museum will reinvent its outside space by bringing science online in the open so children can access technology and nature at the same time. “We want our exhibits to create new knowledge and new questions for growing young minds,” adds Lawson.

Signs will invite parents to download nature-centric apps and scan QR codes for interactive fun. These tech-savvy exhibits will help children engage with others around the world about the environments in which they live. The new outdoor technology exhibit is under construction and scheduled for completion this fall.

Since 1999, the Promising Practice Award has built a body of knowledge and replicable practices that have advanced the field of children’s museums. Two years ago, the Promising Practice Award Reimagined was developed to provide grants to support children’s museums as they reimagine themselves to even better serve their audience and their communities’ ever-changing needs. The Wilmington museum will also receive a profile on the MetLife Foundation Research & Practice Exchange database. Accessible at www.ChildrensMuseums.org, the database provides more than 100 summaries of award-winning Promising Practices.

The Children’s Museum of Wilmington stimulates children’s imagination, curiosity and love of learning. The museum celebrates the joys of childhood by providing magical and playful experiences for children ages 1-10. For more information, visit www.playwilmington.org or call Paris Land, science educator, at (910) 254-3534.

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