Titled “Your Healthy Body,” the exhibit covers 1,600 square feet of the museum and features walk-in models of the heart, brain, lungs and stomach. The displays are hands-on, allowing children to engage in imaginative and interactive play.
Children can also try their hand at being a physician, with an opportunity to examine teddy bears — and scrub in for surgery. They’ll learn about common medical procedures and tools.
A rock climbing wall and balance beam were there in the past, but they’ve been given a completely new look to encourage children to stay physically active.
“The Children’s Museum of the Upstate is immensely grateful for the support from Prisma Health to make this incredible renovation possible,” said Lauren Luneckas, TCMU’s executive director. The exhibit is designed to help introduce children to healthy habits and medical procedures in a nonthreatening environment to acclimate them to the health care system.
Prisma Health certified child life specialist Taylor Stathes said because medical professionals use big words, they often have to develop alternate terminology that children will be able to understand. That was much of the inspiration for the design of the exhibits.
“There’s a lot of room for misinterpretation,” she said. She hopes the exhibit will reduce the stress children face when they get to the doctor’s office.
“The Children’s Museum of the Upstate is immensely grateful for the support from Prisma Health to make this incredible renovation possible,” said Lauren Luneckas, TCMU’s executive director.
“We are excited to combine the expertise of pediatricians, pediatric child life specialists and the children’s museum design team to teach children about their bodies and how to keep themselves healthy,” said Dr. Robin LaCroix, medical director of Prisma Health Children’s Hospital-Upstate.
Along with Prisma, many minds came together to conceptualize, design, construct and arrange the exhibits, Luneckas said. The museum has an in-house team that develops exhibits, but the design and fabrication of the exhibits goes to companies in Ohio and Nebraska, respectively.
“We decided we really wanted children understanding their bodies and how they can take care of their bodies,” Luneckas said.
For more information, check out The Children’s Museum of the Upstate at tcmupstate.org.