Amphibians amaze at nature museum

Frogs and turtles can both survive on water and land, but don’t confuse them as the same species.

As part of the Amazing Amphibians exhibit at the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, kids can peer at all manner of frogs, toads and salamanders as well as play interactive games and walk through a maze learning about the life cycle of the creatures.

“One of the key things we’ve integrated into the maze is what makes an amphibian (frogs, toads and salamanders) versus a reptile (snakes, turtles and dinos),” says Allison Sacerdote-Velat, the museum’s curator of herpetology.

The exhibit is full of touch and play pieces, with a 15-foot zipline, a “wheel of time,” the maze and other games. There is also a section that discusses frogs and toads in pop culture, ala “The Princess & The Frog.”

Conservation is the core of the museum’s message, and many of the species on display—like the mudpuppies and salamanders—are native to Illinois.

The museum also recently opened an early education exhibit, Nature’s Puzzles, to help keep up math skills in the summer.

The puzzle helps kids find math and patterns in their everyday lives and challenges them to play math games.


Amazing Amphibians & Nature’s Puzzles

  • Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, 2430 N. Cannon Drive, Chicago.
  • 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday-Sunday.
  • Free with museum admission.

This article originally appeared in the August issue of Chicago Parent. Read the rest of the issue

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