Last Thursday night we attended the opening of the latest exhibition at Scienceworks – Wallace & Gromit’s World of Invention. I was just as excited as the kids to be going along as I adore Wallace and Gromit. (I find Wallace’s phraseology gorgeous – love phrases like “cracking toast”, “its just not cricket” and “steady on”.)
If you are not familiar with Wallace and Gromit, they are the main characters in a series of clay animations created by Nick Park. Wallace (the human) and Gromit (the dog) live together in a small house and make all sorts of wonderful inventions with the aim of making everyday life tasks easier. You can see some of their more idealistic inventions in the short series of animations called Cracking Contraptions You Tube.
The exhibition is more that just a look at the animated characters though. It is aimed to be a creative and accessible way for children (and adults!) to learn about the importance of protecting big ideas.
The exhibition is set up as a a life-size version of Wallace and Gromit’s home on 62 West Wallaby Street. At the opening, the audience toured the exhibition in two groups. The space inside the house is limited, so I highly recommend making a booking when you want to attend (see end for more details).
And if you have smaller ones you would really want to consider going on a Little Kids Day In. A day held on the first Monday of each month, when there is no school group tours at the museum, allowing little ones more access to all the activities.
There are so many different ways for the kids to get hands on at the exhibition. The 11 and 6 year old enjoyed playing this game.
The preschooler loved making patterns for his wall paper. It was all touch screen controlled and very simple for him to navigate.
He then pressed a button to see his wallpaper appear on the big screen.
My daughter who loves to draw and colour in, spend ages on the “rainbow wall”.
We all loved this contraption, which required physical activity to sit and watch some TV.
The 11 year old loves a sporting challenge, so did all the throwing while the younger ones took over the controls.
Throughout the exhibition there are many message about the importance creating and protecting your ideas.
There are also ideas stations where kids can write down / draw their ideas. They could also enter them in the “Cracking Ideas” competition if they like as well.
Without a doubt the highlight for the preschooler was zooming (they do go fast!) down the plug hole. I think he went down at least 50 times!
Every bathroom should have some shower karaoke!
There is a modelling clay forest the kids can add to.
Only my daughter made something to add.
The boys were having too much fun over in Gromit’s kennel.
And on the way out there is very fun memorabilia you can purchase. We bought a very cute magna puzzle.
There are some fantastic resources on the Scienceworks website that you can check out before you visit the exhibition. While it is aimed aimed teachers and schools, they are suitable for parents too:
- An Education Kit – complete with teacher’s notes and many great activities for the kids.
- Little Inventor’s Handbook – details of competition for kids.
- Design a logo – activity showing how to protect your brand or logo with trade marks.
- Plus more you can find here.
Wallace & Gromit’s World of Invention – The Details
Melbourne’s Scienceworks will be the first venue in Australia to show the exhibition from now until Decemeber. It will then move to Sydney’s Powerhouse Museum in December 2012.
Scienceworks – 2 Booker St Spotswood, Victoria, 3015
Daily, 19 May – 11 Nov 2012
10:00 AM – 4:30 PM
Entry to Scienceworks only:
Adult $10.00, Child (3-16 years) Free, Concession Free (Museum Victoria Members receive discounted entry.)
Wallace & Gromit’s World of Invention (on top of Scienceworks entry):
Adult $9, Child $6, Concession $7.50
Can me made online here.
Or by phone:
13 11 02 (Victoria only)
03 9392 4800 (Australia-wide)
+61 3 9392 4800 (International)
Are you a fan of Wallace and Gromit?