History lessons come to life at area museums
For students, the new year signifies the end of their holiday break and the beginning of a new semester. Getting kids back into their school routine can be difficult; but not as difficult as getting them excited about their schoolwork. A trip to the museum is a sure way to jump-start a child’s mind and restore their spirits.
For a novel experience straight from Moby Dick, visit the Texas Seaport Museum. The museum’s main feature, the Elissa, is a 205-foot, three-masted tall ship built in Scotland in 1877. Elissa’s 19 sails cover more than one-quarter of an acre in surface area. She is not a replica but a fully-functional survivor of her era. While you’re there, take a nautical sight-seeing excursion aboard the Seagull II, a 50-foot twin-engine motor vessel. You can also search the Galveston immigration database for a list of more than 130,000 immigrants that entered the country through the seaport from 1846 to 1948.
409-763-1877 Location: Pier 21, No. 8
Hours: Daily 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Admission: Adults $8, Students $6,
Ages six and under are free
In the 1600s, Sir Isaac Newton proposed three laws of motion that are cornerstones of the science of flight. Centuries later, the Wright brothers made their historic flight and changed the way we thought about travel, space and even battle. During World War II a vast array of technology was employed, particularly in aerial combat planes, such as the Spitfire Mark I, P-47 Thunderbolt, F-44 Corsair and F-6F Hellcat. The Lone Star Flight Museum showcases more than 40 historic aircraft from this time period, expertly preserved and in pristine flying condition. These planes regularly take flight in air shows at Scholes Field and annually at Ellington Field during Wings Over Houston. Children’s excitement will soar as they explore some of the most intriguing aircraft produced for combat.
At the Civil War Museum, children can learn there are things worth fighting over other than the television remote. The small, one-room museum houses various items from the Civil War-era, including uniforms, weapons, cannon balls and Confederate money that led to one of the greatest inflationary periods in the South.
Location: 200 Noble St., Ste. 6
Hours: Tuesday-Saturday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
Tired of telling the kids to wash their hands? Take them on a stroll through the oversized human body exhibit at the John P. McGovern Museum of Health and Medical Science. They will learn how germs infect the body and, maybe, they’ll think twice before wiping their nose with the back of their hand. The museum has 61 interactive video and audio kiosks about human anatomy and health, and presents several traveling exhibits throughout the year such as Genome: The Secret of How Life Works, opening Feb. 2, and Grossology: The (Impolite) Science of the Human Body, arriving this summer. You may want to save the DNA exhibit until after you’ve had “the talk” or you might be having it on the way home from the museum.
Location: 1515 Hermann Drive
Hours: Monday-Saturday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sunday noon-5 p.m.
Admission: Adults $6, seniors and children 3-17 $5, children 2 and under are free; Thursday from 2 p.m.-7 p.m. is Family Free Day