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DuPage Children’s Museum awarded $240,200 in grants

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The DuPage Children’s Museum was awarded $240,200 in grants by the Illinois Public Museum Capital Grants Program. Read the full release below.

DuPage Children’s Museum (DCM) announced today it has received $240,200 to support the final phase of the Museum’s AWEsome Energy exhibit as part of the Illinois Public Museum Capital Grants Program, administered by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (DNR). AWEsome Energy will be an interactive, hands-on exploration of how Air, Water, and Electricity (AWE) are used independently and together to produce energy. The grant dollars awarded will provide partial funding for the last stage of the exhibit, AWEsome Water, which will showcase numerous highly-engaging, experiential activities that will enhance children’s understanding of the power of water.  

 The entire exhibit experience of AWEsome Energy builds upon DCM’s successful self-directed, interactive approach to education by offering authentic opportunities to challenge the learning abilities of young children. The exhibit incorporates a unique approach to museum science learning by allowing children to explore the intersection of air, water, and electricity and to construct meaning at their own pace through personal experiences.

 “AWEsome Water will be the exciting final step in a larger exhibit experience that will transform and improve the current offerings at the Museum,” said Sarah Orleans, President & CEO, DuPage Children’s Museum. “Focusing on STEM concepts and the importance of all types of energy through exhibit experiences is yet another way the Museum is defining itself as a true force for early learning.”

 AWEsome Electricity, phase one of the three-part exhibit, opened in Summer 2012.AWEsome Air is currently being prototyped on the Museum floor through visitor input and observational research, and is slated to open in Summer 2015. The third phase,AWEsome Water, will be prototyped, finalized, fabricated, and installed in late 2015, and will link the three exhibit components to complete AWEsome Energy.

 The grant money awarded will support fundamental educational components of theAWEsome Water section of AWEsome Energy. Dynamic Tables will include several powerful, fast-moving water table experiences, challenging children to think about the weight and power of moving water to harness energy. In addition to financing the fabrication and installation of the water tables, the funds will also support the infrastructure for additional educational components of the AWEsome Water exhibit and provide the final connection between the AWEsome Air and AWEsome Electricityinstallations.

 “Museums play a vital role in telling us about our world and who we are; where we’ve been, and where we’re going,” said Illinois Governor Pat Quinn. “These investments will help museums attract even more visitors, boost tourism, create hundreds of jobs, and help preserve our history for generations to come.”

 Governor Quinn announced that in addition to DuPage Children’s Museum, 46 other museums throughout the state of Illinois will receive $20 million in state capital investments to improve their facilities and develop new exhibits. The investments are through Governor Quinn’s $31 billion Illinois Jobs Nows! program and are part of Quinn’s agenda to boost Illinois’ economy and to support more than 439,000 jobs over six years.

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