OKLAHOMA CITY – Science Museum Oklahoma is honored to announce the award of a $3 million grant from the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation. The grant will be used to fund the extension of vital discovery learning opportunities for children and families throughout Oklahoma. Conceived in 2003 and funded in 2007 by a $7.2 million grant from the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation, the Oklahoma Museum Network (OMN) program is a consortium of museums strategically located across the state working together to provide high quality, hands-on educational experiences. Network members include: Science Museum Oklahoma in Oklahoma City, Jasmine Moran Children’s Museum in Seminole, Leonardo’s Discovery Warehouse in Enid and Museum of the Great Plains in Lawton.
“We are pleased with the impact this museum collaborative is having on children in Oklahoma,” said Steve Anderson President of the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation. “These museums and the traveling ‘museum on wheels’ have been able to provide many students, particularly in rural Oklahoma, with hands-on science experiences for the first time. The continued funding will allow the Oklahoma Museum Network to reach even more students across the state, develop new exhibits, and provide additional educational opportunities to students and teachers alike.”
Over the past five years, the Oklahoma Museum Network has introduced a series of innovative hands-on exhibits that rotate through each partner museum to encourage families to play and learn together. Since its inception, over one million museum guests have benefitted from the Network’s activities. To also make inquiry learning more accessible to the outlying areas of the state, a traveling mobile museum was developed. The 40-foot museum on wheels, "Science Matters", has visited all 77 Oklahoma counties, collaborating with teachers, expanding educational programs and engaging more than 100,000 school children (70% from underserved schools and counties) in essential discovery science experiences.
“Children learn best when they explore, investigate and make their own discoveries. We are excited to be able to continue this program that has discovery at its very core, providing quality opportunities to develop critical thinking skills and shape the minds of tomorrow’s leaders, explorers and innovators,” stated Sherry Marshall, director of the Oklahoma Museum Network
The new extension grant will provide support through 2015, allowing the Oklahoma Museum Network to expand its impact with new exhibits, teacher workshops, outreach programs and an updated mobile museum.
About the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation
The Donald W. Reynolds Foundation is a national philanthropic organization founded in 1954 by the late media entrepreneur for whom it is named. Headquartered in Las Vegas, Nevada, it has committed over $50 million through the Children’s Discovery initiative.
About the Oklahoma Museum Network
The Oklahoma Museum Network, funded by the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation, is a statewide collaboration of museums working together to provide discovery learning experiences and science education resources to families, students and educators across the state.
About Science Museum Oklahoma
Science Museum Oklahoma reveals the wonder and relevance of science in our everyday lives. Get up to your elbows in science with acres of hands-on experiences, thousands of space, aviation and cultural artifacts and new exhibits always on the horizon. Blast off beyond the Milky Way in the Planetarium Theater and feel the heat from live explosions in Science Live. And you’ll love traveling to new worlds while watching IMAX movies in the Dome Theater. Let your inner-child run wild!