Petroleum Museum offers summer fun for kids

Petroleum Museum offers summer fun for kids

The Petroleum Museum isn’t just for tourists anymore.

This summer, children have a chance to discover exciting information about chemistry and the Permian Basin area with the museum’s special twist on learning.

The museum offers a Harry Potter Science Camp next week, a Wild Wild West Adventure Camp in July and a movie camp that runs every Tuesday through Aug. 8.

Cheryl Ross, education and program director at the museum, said the Harry Potter Science Camp offers ”hocus pocus with a chemistry focus.”

Ross said the program promises a week of fun and learning starting Monday.

When children first arrive at camp, they receive a robe and cauldron and are put into ”houses” similar to the Harry Potter series for lab experiments.

”That is an instant way for them to make friends, especially if they come by themselves,” Ross said.
The weeklong array of events includes activities such as ”Disappearing Acts” where students learn about different chemical solutions and their reactions with different substances.

They also will learn how to move objects with ”magic wands” and study elements of the periodic table on ”Spells and Potions” day.

Lana Cooper said her son, Christopher, loved the Harry Potter science camp last year.
”My son has read all of the Harry Potter books, and he loved the way they did it,” she said. ”People are always saying kids need to learn more math and science, and they’re teaching the kids in a way that is fun for them to learn.”

Later, in July, the Wild Wild West Adventure Camp classes will offer hands-on learning experience about the Midland and Odessa areas, Ross said.

The first day, children will get a chance to live like an American Indian where they will make vests, learn American Indian signs and hang out in a life-size teepee.

Campers also will have a chance to learn about drilling rigs where they will climb on a modern oil rig, wear hard hats and learn to identify all the parts of a drilling rig.

The Wild Wild West Adventure camp also will give children the chance to collect samples of plant life native to Texas, learn about Texas wildlife and participate in the museum’s version of a Texas rodeo.

Both camp sessions have snack time, where campers will eat something related to whatever activity they are doing that day.

”I would recommend parents to send their kids,” Cooper said. ”It’s highly supervised and they’re learning something that could be boring in a fun way. And this gives them something to do during the day.”

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