Extraordinary Give | Hands-On House

Since we first opened our doors in 1987, the world sure has changed … but the importance of play has not.  In fact, we’d argue that our children need their imaginations now more than ever.  The activities at Hands-on House are designed to be both fun and educational, strengthening young minds with early practice at skills like problem-solving and cooperation and creativity.

As the world is changing, so are we. In 2020 we will open a brand new exhibit that immerses children in the experience of construction.  Hands-on activities will illustrate elements from excavation to insulation and painting – and specifically highlight the skilled trades. We hope to inspire the next generation of plumbers, electricians, carpenters and masons – the people who build our community!

It’s our mission to provide landmark learning experiences for children and their families through play — in our interactive exhibits; in the Clubhouse, where STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) skills are approachable for our earliest learners; and in hands-on workshops that enhance learning in local classrooms.

We believe foundational learning experiences should be available to all children in our community, and we are working to make the Museum more welcoming to all audiences.

In 2019, we joined Museums for All, an initiative that offers reduced admission for low-income families.  More than 600 individuals have benefited in less than 10 months! We again provided free admission to active military duty families from Memorial Day to Labor Day.  Future plans include multilingual signage and sensory friendly programming.

According the American Academy of Pediatrics, developmentally appropriate play with parents and peers helps children build social-emotional, cognitive, language and self-regulation skills and safe, stable nurturing relationships with caregivers. Play enhances brain structure and promotes the learning process. Play helps children thrive.

Will you help us give more children in Lancaster County the power of play?