Alphabetical Sydney: Creative Lab, at the Museum of Sydney, is a children’s exhibition which truly delivers on engagement.
This interactive exhibition has been produced in collaboration with the talented creators of the bestselling whimsical children’s picture book, Alphabetical Sydney, Antonia Pesenti and Hilary Bell. The exhibition invites children to explore famous Sydney landmarks and to take in the quintessential sights and sounds of the city.
On arrival, each child visiting the Alphabetical Sydney ‘Creative Laboratory’ receives a souvenir Lab Kit which guides them through the exhibition and provides opportunities to draw, colour, write and create.
Children are encouraged to draw where they are from and where they want to go, to write their own verse, make a fruit bat and fold a paper boat ferry. There are ample colouring pencils, sharpeners, glue and paper on the tables that the children can use as they produce their works. Once finished, the creations can then be incorporated into different components of the exhibition (or taken home if they prefer).
There are some wonderfully iconic Sydney experiences to be had too. Children can dress up as clowns and laugh at their reflections in the funhouse mirror by the Luna Park gate. They can hang with the fruit bats amid a starry night sky. They can listen to the sounds as the city stretches from east to west: construction, traffic and finally the abundant birdlife of the Blue Mountains. And then they can curl up among the cushions under a Moreton Bay fig tree and read some well-known children’s books, including the Alphabetical Sydney book on which the exhibition is based. Readings held in the book corner daily at 10.30 am.
On the day we visited the exhibition space was not at all crowded, as these photos indicate. The exhibition was well maintained, with furniture and relevant items in place and the plentiful stationery supplies for creating. Our two children, who are three and five, were happily entertained for an hour and a half. The highlights for our children were drawing their favourite places, creating and hanging their fruit bats and the Luna Park dress-up exhibit.
This exhibition is ideal for children aged three to eight years who are inquisitive and love to draw and write, but there’s plenty of fun to be had for visiting adults as well.
The exhibition is on until 12 August 2018.
Alphabetical Sydney, Museum of Sydney, Cnr Philip and Bridge Streets, Sydney
Access to the exhibition is via a lift to level 2.
Open daily from 10 am–5pm (closed Christmas Day and Good Friday)
On until until 12 August 2018
The exhibition is free with museum entry: Adult $12, Child $8, Concession $8, Family $30, under fives free.
Baby changing and bathroom facilities are on the ground floor.
Photographs © Ginny Grant
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