CDM to Provide Discovery Kits to Opportunity Zone Schools

Published: | by Kyrstin Hill

Chattanooga, Tenn. (April 17, 2020)  Creative Discovery Museum (CDM) is temporarily closed, but its outreach efforts continue in the Chattanooga community. CDM has partnered with Hamilton County Schools to provide 2,000 Discovery Kits to elementary school children in HCS’s Opportunity Zone Schools. The Discovery Kits, made possible by Food City in Hixson, will provide students and their families with the materials and instructions needed to do a hands-on, STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and math) activity.  

Beginning Monday, April 20, Discovery Kits will be distributed at Hardy Elementary School’s lunch distribution site. In the future, CDM plans to provide additional Discovery Kits to be distributed at the remaining elementary school lunch distribution sites in the Opportunity Zone.   

"The role parents and caregivers play in their child's education has shifted and we want to support families any way we canWe are committed to being an informal education resource for our community while our doors are closed,” said Henry Schulson, CDM’s executive director. “We have a longstanding partnership with Hamilton County Schools and we are delighted to help supplement the district’s at home learning initiatives with our Discovery Kits.”  

The first Discovery Kit will include materials and instructions to create structures out of homemade playdough. This activity is intended to be an independent activity for children ages 6 and up. Children under six can enjoy the activity with adult assistance. The Discovery Kit activity which includes measuring and making a mixturesupports fine motor development and encourages problem solving skills as children figure out how to build their structures. 

“We want our students to stay engaged in meaningful learning experiences while they are continuing their learning from home. We are grateful that the Creative Discovery Museum team chose to provide STEAM learning activities for our students,” said Jill Levine, the district’s chief of innovation and choice. 

Since closing its doors on March 16, CDM has been committed to giving access to its story times, science shows, art activities, kitchen lessons and beyond through its video series on YouTube and social media, Creativity TV, and with at home STEAM activities listed on its website. In addition, CDM is offering weekly virtual experiences for Club Discovery, a program for children with disabilities and their typically developing peers. CDM is a Museum for all and the Discovery Kits are just one way we are helping to ensure that children throughout our community have opportunities to learn through play.  

For more information about CDM’s at home STEAM activities, visit cdmfun.org/family-area.