Dreaming of discovering ancient treasures? Meet a mummy, encounter a giant King Tut and dig into the sands of Ur right here in Chicago at the Oriental Institute Museum on the campus of the University of Chicago.
"Every Day is Family Day" boasts this intimate yet world-class museum. Fun and free museum activities help families as they explore and better understand the fascinating world of the ancient Near East.
New this year is the Kipper Family Archeology Discovery Center, a hands-on learning experience where children can learn more about the processes of archaeology. During the two-hour program, children conduct their own excavation in a simulated dig site.
Self-guided activities are available in both English and Spanish, including computer games, gallery activity cards and a popular treasure hunt. As you travel through the museum, you'll discover the palaces of ancient kings, meet a pair of lions from Babylonia and see toys and games enjoyed by children from long ago. Walk like an Egyptian and try your hand at deciphering hieroglyphics. See if you can spot the lizard coffin and the baby crocodile mummy.
Don't forget to stop at the Suq (Arabic for market) on your way out, where you'll find a great array of jewelry, crafts and gift items from the Near East, including affordable children's picture and activity books, cards, posters and prints.
Visit the museum's Web site for information on upcoming workshops and family events.
Amy Bizzarri is a mom of two living in Logan Square. She also blogs at tiramisumom.com.
See more of Amy's stories here.