Learn Through Play

Madison Children's Museum's blog: news and musings about the museum, issues in the field, and the American Girl Benefit Sale.

She visited the museum as a child and now brings her daughter to play. Read Natalie’s story.

Madison Children’s Museum has always been a part of my life. My mom used to bring my siblings and me to the old State Street location when we were little; now that I’m a mom, I bring my daughter Nell all the time. I loved it as a child, and I love it even more now that I can share the museum with Nell!



For my siblings and me, the museum was a place that belonged to us. We could push our boundaries, be the decision makers, and figure things out, together. I remember jumping on colorful dots to make noise and milking the cows that towered over us. I also remember venturing away from my mom for the first time, taking the lead, and learning how to be independent.

As a first time mom, visits to the museum started as a way to get out of the house—to a safe place where I could carry all the new parent gear, breastfeed, and have conversations with other parents experiencing the same challenges and joys.  Then, I also began to realize how much Nell was learning and how much I was learning about Nell during our time at the museum. I saw her act shyly for the first time, and I watched her overcome that instinct as she met and played with new friends. She studies older children and absorbs their actions—she crawled for the first time the day after an Early Explorers playgroup.


Now, when Nell and I are at the museum, I see her challenge herself both physically and mentally as she discovers stairs, tunnels, ramps and slides; puzzles through new activities; and participates in story time and sing-alongs. She makes a new discovery each time we visit. The water dome, the paint wall, and the building blocks are all new favorites.

We’ve come full circle! In the same way, I learned independence at the museum, Nell is learning that she can venture away from me. I look forward to the future when she can play here with her siblings and cousins, and grow strong bonds with them like I did with my siblings. I’m so grateful to have the museum here for Nell and me, just like it was there for my mom and me when I was a child


Madison Children’s Museum is a unique community resource. It’s a place of joy and love, where children can learn through play and parents can encourage them to realize their potential. During this time of giving, will you consider a gift to support the museum?

Gifts ensure that the museum remains accessible and affordable for families today, tomorrow, and always.

With gratitude,

Natalie Evans signature

Natalie Evans

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Give online today. Your gift helps the museum achieve its vision to be a welcoming, imaginative, joyful learning environment that supports families in nurturing children’s creativity and curiosity.

Do you have a story to tell? Share it with the museum by emailing stories@madisonchildrensmuseum.org

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This entry was posted on November 15, 2018 by in Museum Happenings.

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