Experience the wonder and excitement of hands-on science!

WonderLab has more than 65 hands-on science exhibits, both inside the museum and outside in the garden, to capture your imagination and make learning fun! Whatever your age, we encourage you to bring your curiosity to the museum and experiment, build, observe and discover. Our exhibits are both educational and fun, reinforcing concepts and skills set forth by Indiana Academic Standards and also incorporating principles of universal design. Note that some exhibits featured on the website are occasionally moved into temporary storage to make room for new experiences.

SPECIAL EXHIBITION

Run! Jump! Fly! Adventures in Action

October 4, 2016 – January 16, 2017

Health is WonderLab’s middle name. Run! Jump! Fly! Adventures in Action™ provides an action adventure theme that inspires young people and families to get physically active in a non-competitive environment. The exhibition features activities that build strength, coordination balance and endurance, all of which contribute to health and fitness.

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George & Evelyn Brabson Discovery Garden

This special area for children, ages 6 and younger, is designed to provide early childhood science experiences in a protected space. Exhibits include the Kaleidoscope Cave, live animal habitats, the Magnet Wall, the Flat Rock Stage, the Little Light Table, tree house climbing structures and access to Water Works. The Discovery Garden is located on the first floor of the museum and is separated from the rest of the gallery by a low fence, which allows adults to keep track of older children outside the Discovery Garden.

Bubble-Airium

A favorite destination in the museum, the Bubble-Airium provides unexpected “soapy science” experiences! Exhibits in this area typically include the Giant Flowing Bubble, Viscosity Tubes, the Cloudball Machine, the Bubble Wall, and Strobe Drops. Bubbles are a great way to explore concepts such as evaporation, states of matter, shapes, surface tension, density, light, color, and measurements in size, area, diameter, volume and length. The Bubble-Airium is located in the first-floor gallery.

Fitzgerald Hall of Natural Science

Our second floor gallery is where most of WonderLab’s live insects, amphibians and reptiles live in settings that mimic their natural habitats. Exhibits showcase the diversity of the living world, as well as the ancient environment of south-central Indiana as evidenced by fossils. In 2017, WonderLab will be installing a brand new Saltwater Aquarium that contains a self sustaining coral reef ecosystem, including descendants of animals found in this region’s fossil record.

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How Things Work

WonderLab encourages visitors of all ages to enjoy the experience of hands-on science. Many  of our exhibits illustrate how things work, highlighting science content such as the properties of air, the properties of water, magnetic and electrical forces, gravity and motion, light and color, health and the human body, and the science of sound. WonderLab believes that learning science is fun and we hope that you’ll take advantage of the many opportunities we offer to play and learn.

Lester P. Bushnell WonderGarden

This outdoor area between the museum building and the B-Line Trail is a natural oasis with flowers, vegetables, herbs, native woodland plants, a water feature and seating. In 2015, a new tower was installed as a nesting area for Chimney Swifts, which come through Bloomington in the fall and spring as part of their migration pattern. The garden offers the opportunity to closely observe nature through the seasons, and includes exhibits about solar power and the science of sound.