Maryland Science Center

The Maryland Science Center at Baltimore’s Inner Harbor is sponsoring homeschool classes Tuesday through Friday the entire month for preschoolers to high schoolers, and I took my 4-year-old to a Bugs in the Backyard “class” this morning. The class, which was geared to preschoolers, consisted of reading from a couple of books, having the kids stick cutout “spots” on a cutout ladybug and cutout “insects” on cutout spiderweb, and coloring your own insects on a piece of paper.

Overall, it was a great deal, since the class was only $4.50 and afterward she got unlimited time in the Kids Room, which is huge (shown in the video), more entertaining and more educational. Toddlers could easily spend a couple of hours there.

It’s also worth a weekend visit if you’ve never been; the center’s got three levels of interactive exhibits, an IMAX theater, and frequent events/activities. It’s pretty pricey though, for a family: basic admission for an adult starts at $14.50, kids’ tickets start at $10. You can check their Web site for discount programs, including membership (which is a good deal depending on how often you plan to go) and Dollar Days on Dec. 8 and 9 (when admission is only $1, not including IMAX movies).

Some tips:
* Pack a lunch and snacks. This is one of the few facilities I’ve been to that set aside space for families who bring their own lunches rather than buying at the center. The room is large and has vending machines with drinks (soda, water, juice) and snacks (chips, candy).
* If you’re going to be there for less than 2 hours, there are metered parking spaces across the street on Light Street and Key Highway (50 cents for 2 hours and the meters only take quarters). If you’re attending the Homeschool programs, park on Key Highway–the entrance for attendees faces the street. If you’re there just to visit the center, the entrance faces the harbor.

For info on the homeschool classes, go to

For pictures, see


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