The NYSCI museum site has a lot of information about it’s events and exhibits but is missing the opening times even from the visit & admission pages. The address is only written in small letters at the very bottom of the pages. Getting there took awhile and I hoped it will be worthwhile. When we arrived there was no one else in line in front of us, and there were three people working at the front desks. We were welcomed in, but there was no explicit directions as to where to start our tour or what we should see until we asked for recommendations. There were only a few other visitors inside the museum and they were all adults who seemed to be in a group.
The architecture of the the museum felt strange and the connections between the spaces didn’t feel intuitive to wonder through. The entry hallway until getting to the first exhibition was quite long and just had entrances to the bathrooms. It seemed like that walkthrough hallway could have been utilized better.
The exhibitions had different design styles and felt incoherent as a whole. It felt also like they were trying to exhibit as much as possible with a lot of captains to read.
We started at the ground floor, where the exhibition was about finding life a way from earth, and explaining what ‘life’ is. It looked like the museum invested a lot into this exhibition, but many of the interactive exhibits were not as engaging and interesting as I would like them to be.
There were many videos around that you could just press a button and start playing it. The problem was that there were sound overlaps between the nearby videos.
This was my favorite item in this exhibition – it show you how much of you is water by stepping on a scale.
I found the large timeline wall describing the history of mathematics very inefficient as it was overloaded with information, designed as a bit cluster and I think that there is no way someone will take the time and focus so stand in front of it and try to read through it. It would take forever and would still be pretty confusing. I think it would be a better idea to have storytelling sessions about the inventors and their discoveries as another way to present this information.
too much information…
I really liked this example of probability –
The workshop area was designed in a very attractive manner and I was really curious to know what is happening there. Unfortunately during a regular week day there are more museum instructors than visitors and the place felt pretty lonely. The workshops seemed to be fun for a young audience, but the it didn’t seem to be directly connected to the rest of the exhibits.
The exhibition about perception light and the sound was nice, and was made to be interacted with, but I noticed that unless I was reading the captions most of the items didn’t explain themselves by through the interaction. Plus I felt the interaction was not so engaging.
We passed through the light part and arrived to the sound where there was a museum staff memeber who demonstrated how to interact with this piece. It was cool and nice to have her demonstrating and that brought the exhibition alive.
It was exciting to see Connected Worlds for the first time, but also very strange how it is place in this space with all the stain glass bricks that resembles a some kind of a modern cathedral. The interaction was fun, but engaging only for a little while.
When we came out of the Connected World exhibit there was a demonstration to these 3 people and it was pretty awkward as the museum staff member was using a microphone to speak to people that were sitting very close to him.
The science playground looked like fun and we discovered it accidentally at the end of our tour. It was another extra $5 to go to and I think it’s a lot considering the fact that getting into the museum is relatively expensive as well.
Overall the NYCSI museum seemed to be a fun place for children, but could improve it’s way-finding direction, and perhaps create some kind of a fun route to walk through and help visitors plan their visit in a more conscious way.