MCM Opens WonderBox Exhibit

WonderBoxwill incorporate both technological elements like a 3-D printer and pens, robotics, and circuitry, as well as making activities using simple, strategically incorporated objects. Image: MCM

Mississippi Children’s Museum (MCM) has opened its newest exhibit experience, WonderBox, a 1,500 square foot science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM) exhibit in the museum’s existing arts gallery.

WonderBox is a makerspace that offers visitors the opportunity to design, create, and test their amazing creations. As an open-ended space, people of all ages can explore what it’s like to be a maker. WonderBox will be filled with various types of materials, tools, and machines to promote interaction with all aspects of STEAM.

Jim Henson used resourcefulness and innovation to construct puppets out of rubber, foam, felt, and small metal bars used to control their limbs. Image: MCM

Another component of WonderBox will be the display cases featuring amazing stories from the state of Mississippi. Mississippi has a rich history of innovators, tinkerers, and creators. Some of those incredible people will be highlighted within the WonderBox displays, including Gilroy Chow’s work on the first Apollo space mission to the moon and Jim Henson’s Fraggle Rock.

“When you say STEAM, people’s reactions often are ‘I Don’t’ know how to do that,’” said Kate Perry, MCM Assistant Director of Exhibits. “With WonderBox, we wanted to create a space that would make STEAM concepts approachable so that anyone can come in and have makers experiences, regardless of their existing knowledge or skill set.”

WonderBox will incorporate both technological elements like a 3-D printer and pens, robotics, and circuitry, as well as making activities using simple, strategically incorporated objects. It will utilize interactive exhibit components to challenge visitors to create and test out their creations. Illumination Station, a gigantic Lite Brite, will be one of the exciting new features. Visitors can also build a custom flying machine called The Craft and launch it across the ceiling in WonderBox!

MCM is open Tuesday-Saturday, 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. and Sunday 1:00 – 6:00 p.m. MCM and MCM-Meridian will be open for Magic Mondays from July 5-Aug. 2. General admission tickets are $10 and can be purchased online or at the door.

WonderBox at MCM in Jackson was funded by Entergy, an Institute of Museum and Library Services’ Museums for America grant, and a Hearst Foundations grant.