For a small museum the Polar Museum at the Scott Polar Research Institute in Cambridge really does pack a lot in. We took the kids along on a busy Saturday and we were pleasantly surprised at the variety of different things on offer.
Here’s the best the Polar museum has to offer:
1. Polar Museum Activities for Kids
When we arrived at the museum we were given a clipboard with a really simple activity for Ted to do. He was asked to find something noisy, something scary, something cold and so on around the Polar Museum. David then had to draw a picture of those things for him because he wasn’t in a drawing mood. He was given a badge as a prize for completing the sheet.
They also had a number of other hands-on activities. The dress up box was a particular winner.
2. Polar Museum Scott Expedition Exhibits
The best bit of the Polar Museum from my point of view was the Scott Expedition exhibit. There was a large portion dedicated to Scott and his ill-fated trek. These include draws full of the letters and other interesting stuff found with the bodies of Scott and his team. The whole exhibit was fascinating and I would have loved to spend more time reading through everything. Not this time, Ted had finished his worksheet and Miss May had finished her crisps so I was forced to move on.
3. Polar Museum Wildlife Exhibits
Ted is always drawn to the animal exhibits first. He was particularly taken my the penguin and chick (for me, it was the narwhal). The museum includes various animals and also the bigger picture of the environment. Most importantly it covers the effect of climate change on the polar regions. We didn’t get to see much of this but we will circle back to it when they are a little older.
4. Polar Museum Maps
Another thing I really enjoyed were the maps. Historical maps are a bit of an obsession of mine and there were plenty of those. They also had some beautiful ceiling maps. Ted is also a map fan but he finds history a little hard to comprehend still. He did engage but in the end moved on quite quickly.
5. Arctic Region Art Exhibits
I wasn’t expecting to see any art at the Polar Museum so I was surprised to find a decent amount of space dedicated to just that. There were permanent displays on the history of art in the Arctic and a special exhibition.
In this post I have focused more on what I enjoyed, rather than what the kids were into. Like most of the museums we visited as a family for our A-Z of Cambridge with kids, I know that while we enjoyed our recent visit, they will both get a lot more out of it if we return when they are older.
I’ve got lots more tips on visiting museums with kids in this post here.
What are the best museums you’ve visited with kids and intend to return to later?