Learn about Japan at the Children’s Museum of Manhattan

Learn about Japan at the Children’s Museum of Manhattan

Take a kid-friendly trip to Japan without leaving New York City! Now through May 17th, the Children’s Museum of Manhattan is featuring an exhibition all about kawaii style and Japanese culture. The show, Hello From Japan!, also includes special programs and art activities throughout its run.

I visited the museum last week where I learned some facts about Japan—the country’s literacy rate is an impressive 99% and the island’s length is 1,864 miles—and watched throngs of shouting children experience Japan’s kawaii pop culture. Different stations throughout the museum’s bottom floor allowed visitors to try on kawaii accessories, take pictures in a photo booth, perform karaoke, learn to write Japanese symbols and more. The exhibition concludes with a replica Shinto shrine, bamboo forest and wishing tree.

In addition to Hello From Japan!, the museum also offers a few ongoing exhibits spanning five total floors—plus one outdoor exhibit open seasonally. I found the fourth floor’s Little Apple more interesting. It focused on NYC history, including blueprints for Rockefeller Center and a mixed media sculpture of the Flatiron Building. In the stairwell, I also found a cardboard recreation of the Empire State Building.

Obviously, everything in the museum is designed for children—even the elevator buttons are kid-height—so at 5’1”, I felt like a giant. The entire museum is also incredibly colorful and for ultimate accessibility, most information is translated into both English and Spanish. The plaques around the Hello From Japan! exhibition are also printed in Japanese.

Visit cmom.org for more information.

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