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Music, Movement, and Mindfulness with Ms. Carol

Wonder Works | Oak Park, Ill.

Experience the majesty of music and movement intertwined with mindfulness with this hands-on multi-disciplinary experience guided by Ms. Carol Swann. Children develop and improve their music ability, motor coordination and social skills through music, creative play and storytelling.

When: 11-11:30 a.m. Jan. 13 and 27; Feb. 3 and 17
Cost: Free with museum admission

Chicago Children’s Choir Black History Month Concerts

Chicago Children’s Choir | Chicago, Ill.


Features singers from nearly 80 Chicago schools. The annual concert series is designed to provide students with an in-depth educational experience as well as a special public performance opportunity. Black History Month 2016 is themed “Hallowed Grounds,” prompting a reflection on the spaces that have played a part in the history of African Americans.

When: 11 a.m.
Cost: Free

Valentines Heart Mosaic Workshop

Unicoi Art Studio | Chicago, Ill.

Make a unique Valentine’s Heart Mosaic for a special person in your life. A card-making area will also be set up! Register online:

When: 4-6 p.m.
Cost: $20

Pets Unleashed

Chicago Children's Museum | Chicago, Ill.

Kids can play with dozens of life-sized, stuffed animal pets, care for them, and even dress up and act like them. Filled with climbable dwellings, caretaking props, wearable accessories, movable structures, and "pets" of all types and sizes, this exhibit provides a platform for boundless self-expression and imaginative play. In addition, there will be live pets on Saturdays at noon. The Anti-Cruelty Society will bring specially-trained dogs and guinea pigs for the little ones to interact with each week. Pets Unleashed offers a pathway for kids to develop compassion, empathy and respect, toward themselves and others.

Cost: Free with museum admission

Build It!

Kohl Children's Museum | Glenview, Ill.

Exhibit puts an innovative spin on classic building blocks by letting children explore and interact with ten different varieties of blocks in a single space. Stations in the exhibit include Shadow Play: kids can build structures and cast shadows using directional lights; Build It, Test It, Shake It: kids can build and test the strength of their structures by using weights to see if they can withstand a downward force; Sweet Home Chicago: using large floor blocks and small table-top blocks, kids follow blueprint graphics to construct famous Chicago skyscrapers.

Cost: Free with admission

Adventures with Clifford The Big Red Dog

Discovery Center Museum | Rockford, Ill.

Board the Birdwell Island ferry and journey to the world of Clifford, America’s beloved big red dog. Slide down Clifford’s tail, work together to fill Clifford’s big dog bowl with bones, hunt for sea shells at T-Bone’s beach or “work” in the fish and chip shop on Birdwell Island and more.

Cost: Free with museum admission

Black Creativity Juried Art Exhibition

Museum of Science and Industry | Chicago, Ill.

The longest-running exhibition of African-American art in the U.S. features more than 100 dynamic works of art from amateur and professional African-American artists from around the nation, as well as a youth category which features work by a dozen area high school artists.

Cost: Free with museum admission

Enchanted Railroad

The Morton Arboretum | Lisle, Ill.

The annual event features a larger-than-life platform with two levels and as many as 12 model trains, including a miniature replica of an Amtrak train. Enchanted Railroad also features a Lego train car crafted by Sean Kenney, artist and creator of the popular Nature Connects exhibit; the train car was originally created for a 2009 episode of NBC’s “30 Rock.” Other highlights include pint-sized details of the arboretum’s grounds, small figurines highlighting some of the arboretum’s most beloved events and interactive elements, perfect for kids.

When: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Friday; 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday-Sunday. Jan. 17-Feb. 22.
Cost: Free with admission

Winter Play

The Morton Arboretum | Lisle, Ill.

A self-guided glimpse into the world of outdoor play will depend on the day. Possibilities include painting snow or building a fort.

When: 11 a.m.-3 p.m. daily
Cost: Free with admission

Gnome Hunt

The Morton Arboretum | Lisle, Ill.

Search for gnomes in the Children's Garden using your best "I Spy" skills. Checklist provided.

When: 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. daily
Cost: Free with admission

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