ROCKINGHAM — Discovery Place Kids is helping families gear up for a new school year with a full slate of activities planned at the children’s museum this month.
Countdown to Kindergarten, a free community-wide program for rising kindergartners, is scheduled from 5-8 p.m. Aug. 8. Kids and their parents can meet local kindergarten teachers, visit a mock classroom, learn about healthful lunches, practice carrying a lunch tray and learn scissor safety.
The event features free museum admission and will offer information that children and parents will need as they prepare for the youngsters’ first day of school.
Discovery Place Kids will close at 3 p.m. Aug. 8 and reopen at 5 for the Countdown to Kindergarten.
Weekend activities take place at 11:15 a.m. and 2:15 p.m. Saturdays and 2:15 p.m. Sundays. This weekend, Discovery Place Kids will celebrate friendship with a program allowing kids to create a special gift for their friends in the museum’s studio.
On Aug. 9-10, a fitness program is planned at the Sandhills Stage. Children will participate in summer games to get their feet moving.
On Aug. 16-17, kids will learn science and have fun with density tests in the museum’s lab and learn whether water balloons float.
On Aug. 23-24, children can take part in alphabet activities at the Sandhills Stage. A hands-on program will help young kids learn to identify letters through stories, games and more.
On Aug. 30-31, the “Smart with Art” program seeks to stimulate brain development by allowing kids to create original artwork and developing skills in self-expression.
Discovery Place Kids also is planning Wonderful Wednesdays events for each Wednesday in August. The themed activities take place at 11:15 a.m. and 2:15 p.m. each week.
Squirt gun science is the Aug. 6 program, and kids also will learn what happens when baking soda and vinegar are mixed.
Kitchen science follows on Aug. 13, organizers said, and children who take part in an activity at the museum lab can make their own flubber.
Color-mixing science is planned on Aug. 20. Participants will learn how red, yellow and blue can be blended to create new colors.
Sensory science is scheduled Aug. 27 for Discovery Place Kids’ youngest guests. Participants will learn how the five senses can be used to explore a variety of objects.
For more information about special programs or daily museum hours and admission prices, visit www.discoveryplacekids.org or call 910-997-5266.