London Children’s Museum
This museum provides children and grown-ups with incredible hands-on learning experiences in a unique child-centered environment. Around 80,000 families visit the Children’s museum annually to play, learn and grow. The museum helps anyone indulge their curiosity and pursue innovation and creative discovery. Exhibits and simulating activities allow every visitor to explore history and heritage, social relationships, and honor the beauty of culture.
The London Children’s Museum helps children stimulate their imagination and curiosity and play their way through powerful play experiences through authentic materials, immersive environments, and meaningful relationships. This museum advocates for unique perspectives, contributions, and new ways of learning.
This type of children’s museum -focusing on children’s social and educational development through interactive exhibits and artifacts- has existed in the United States for quite some time now. It wasn’t until 1970 that the idea of creating a children’s museum was introduced to Canada by -the now museums founder – Carol Johnston.
After visiting the Boston Children’s Museum in 1973, Carol was convinced to establish a children’s museum in London. “It was a different kind of museum where children were welcome to touch, interact and experience. My kids were very excited. Watching them run, climb and play, I thought this was a wonderful way to learn.” Carol remembers.
So, with a lot of effort and determination, committed advocates, and a large group of volunteers, The London Children’s Museum opened its doors in 1975, becoming Canada’s first children’s museum. This museum had a humble beginning; during the first year, volunteers ran programs in 21 city playgrounds to find supporters for this new concept in London. After recruiting an interim board of directors, the London Children’s Museum was incorporated as a non-profit, charitable organization.
Various temporary homes kept the displays and programs of the London Children’s Museum until 1982, when -the former- Riverview Public School was purchased and renovated, supported by $1.5 million proceeds from a community fundraising campaign. In its first year of operation, This museum served 60,000 visitors, ran over 1,100 school programs, and conducted over 200 workshops on a $200,000 budget.