Bonus Boy celebrated his 7th birthday last week, when I started writing this blog he was four! He is now a very big boy indeed, thank you very much, and would quite like to be a scientist and an inventor when he grows up. He pooh poohed the idea of a party (phew!) opting instead to visit the interactive science centre @Bristol with his family and one of his best chums. We had the most fantastic day out!
First stop was half an hour in the Planetarium studying the night sky and shouting out lots of answers to show how clever we all were, followed by a bit of frolicking through the Milky Way!
There was something for everyone, even for a boy studying physics A Level and a man who studied electronics back in the day.
He indulged in a spot of sound investigation (yes, of course he played a tune or two, how could he resist?!)
We may have spent rather a lot of time playing with the bubbles, my daughter appears to have trapped me in hers here!
She did manage to get inside her own bubble at one point but I was too slow with the camera (read ‘Playing too hard myself and missed the photo opp’) We pulled a string and made a bubble wall, created bubble tunnels and weird, wobbly bubbly shapes and we laughed a lot.
We looked at body heat and energy, examined a real human brain and weighed some plastic ones, splatted small creatures in a race towards extinction and some of us ran in a giant hamster wheel to power water pumps (nearly losing control and ending upside down because we were wearing very cool but very slippy shoes). We looked at sound, forces, magnetism, electricity and how our bodies work. We jumped up and down in front of a camera and played music through our headbones.
He made a suspension bridge and knocked it down again
She did a bit of character building in the animation workshop
and we met Morph and Wallace and Gromit – lighting and effects created by Miss Thinly Spread
@Bristol is a wonderful place to explore with children. They are allowed to touch, explore and experiment to their heart’s content, staff are helpful if needed and totally unobtrusive if not.
One parent obviously couldn’t cope with this level of freedom and ‘had a word’ with Bonus Boy and his chum when they were cavorting in the Under 8′s play area. Bonus Boy had climbed into the web and was being a tropical spider (dressed as a lizard for some reason) to his friend’s exotically plumed parrot (fabulous dressing up box – I was jealous), she sidled up to them and in a severe voice said, ‘I’m not sure you are supposed to climb that boys.’
She didn’t notice mama tarantula closing on her from behind, ‘I’m quite sure that they are’ I whispered in her ear.
Bonus Boy’s friend looked at her as if she were deranged ‘Of course we are, look, I can stick myself to the sticky web’ and duly did.
Bonus Boy from his vantage point as King Spider Lizard proffered ‘It’s a web, I’m the spider, can you see another one anywhere?’
She departed, hurriedly with her quiet, hands off child and on we played – I wanted to grab that little girl and give her a role.