Tuesday, March 26, 2013

NYC: Day 2

On our second day in NYC, we got up and walked two blocks to Grand Central Terminal. It's the 100th anniversary of the train station (and also a key NYC subway stop). We went down to the food court and got breakfast and then sat in the station on very old wooden benches and people watched.

After breakfast, we went up to the main area where X-man discovered the Apple Store within the train station. He thought that was pretty cool.

Then we got on our subway train to go down to the Museum of Mathematics. At the MoMath, X-man was in heaven. We arrived shortly after 10 a.m., paid for our tickets ($15/adult, $9 for a child) at the computerized kiosk and whisked him into a wonderland. Like most kids, X-man enjoys museums where he can do things, and that's all there is at MoMath. He rode a tricycle with square wheels on a special grooved floor. He painted in patterns on a computerized screen, he played with the coolest version of tiddlywinks, where the connector pieces had different shapes in them to match up the long beams for a more complicated build. He danced on a Math Square lightup square, put fractions together to create an electronic connection to make a sound go off and played a plethora of math games. It's a small museum with floors 0 and -1. We were there for two hours, and after the first 15 minutes, we shared the space with a number of children there on school trips. It's a museum mostly for the elementary and middle school-aged.

After the museum, we walked down to Eisenberg's Diner near the Flat Iron building and had lunch.

After, we took the subway to the upper west side to play some more at the Children's Museum of Manhattan. As a first grader, X-man is somewhere between big kid museums and children's museums. He's find ing that more and more children's museums are geared toward the 2-4 crowd, and the Children's Museum of Manhattan definitely fit this mold. Tickets were $11 each. There was one entire floor that he could not access because he was too old. He did, however, enjoy his time on the first floor doing all of the "body" activities. His favorite was the "Royal Flush," which showed you what a healthy pee and healthy poop were supposed to look like. (They showed the unhealthy versions, too.)

He also liked the basement where they had a number of building elements. He and I sat down with a bunch of blocks and began to build skyscrapers while MacTroll checked out a small exhibit on the history of NYPD mounties. In the middle of our build a three-year old wandered over, looked at X-man's building and then knocked it down. The tears welled in X-man's eyes. But I stayed calm, this is something that happens at my workplace every day... a child is building something and a friend has a hard time resisting the urge to knock it down to watch it fall. I said, "Uh oh!" And then I invited the friend to help rebuild the building. The mother came over looking very worried and apologetic. I told her not to worry about it. X-man realizing that the child was so much smaller swallowed back his tantrum, and said, "If you want to knock down someone's building, you should ask first." I smiled. He smiled. Then he set back to work, and the little boy watched and bent down and picked up two blocks and put them on top of X-man's new building, lost interest and wandered off.

Since it was about 3 p.m., we decided to walk around the corner near Central Park and make it a three museum day by visiting the American Museum of Natural History. It was included on the City Pass, and unknown to me, included a movie at the Planetarium. Nothing wrong with dinosaur bones and a space exploration to close out our day.

It's a big, museum, but X-man was mostly interested in seeing the bones and learning about space rather than seeing a lot of "dead animals and fake peoples." We attended a movie in the Planetarium called, "Journey to the Stars." It was narrated by Whoopi Goldberg, and it was awesome. We've read a lot about planets at our house, but not a lot about stars. X-man got to learn how the sun was born, and that in 5 billion years, it will burn out (or perhaps go supernova). This scared him, but then I pointed out how long away that was. About how just millions of years ago there were dinosaurs on the planet, and that Earth changes a lot in much shorter periods of time.

But besides learning about our sun and smaller stars, X-man got to learn about "dark matter" and the beginning of the universe 13 billion years ago (or 13.8, if you read the news last week). He was also really excited to learn that each of us contains about a teaspoon of elements made from stars. (Turns out the singer Moby was right...)

We left the museum at 5:30 and were exhausted. It had been a long day on our feet, and my surgically enhanced foot was doing great, but the plantar fasciitis in my left heel was terrible. So, we cabbed it back down to midtown and ordered pizza from Two Boots. It was nice that they had a choice between cheeseless pizza and vegan cheese for me and regular for the boys. But we ordered smalls thinking they'd be individual sized. Alas, as all things in NY pizza, the smalls were gigantic.

1 comment:

Debra Crabtree said...

Momath sounds like a for sure place to hit when we get a chance to visit NYC. Love all of your reviews!