Experience the wonder and excitement of hands-on science!

WonderLab has more than 65 hands-on science exhibits, both inside the museum and outside in the garden, to capture your imagination and make learning fun! Whatever your age, we encourage you to bring your curiosity to the museum and experiment, build, observe and discover. Our exhibits are both educational and fun, reinforcing concepts and skills set forth by Indiana Academic Standards and also incorporating principles of universal design. Note that some exhibits featured on the website are occasionally moved into temporary storage to make room for new experiences.

New in Exhibits – Bubble Domes and Foam Fountains

WonderLab is proud to announce the arrival of two new Bubble Exhibits – Bubble Domes and Foam Fountains. Explore the soapy-science of evaporation, states of matter, shapes, surface tension, density, light, color, and measurements in size, area, diameter, volume and length. Try inserting air or mist into a bubble, create a bubble city, or make a bubble inside a bubble. Dig into the foam at one of three foam stations. What can you create with this surprisingly light substance?

Bubble Domes and Foam Fountains are located in the Bubble Flow exhibit area on the first floor of the gallery. Bubble exhibits are appropriate for all ages.

Science Sprouts Place

Step, crawl, or scoot into WonderLab’s newest exhibit area designed especially for infants and toddlers. Open year round, six days a week, Science Sprouts Place supports learning, exploration, and growth in all children birth through three and their caregivers. The exhibits in Science Sprouts Place are designed to meet the needs of very young children’s natural curiosity and desire to explore and make sense of their world.

Science Sprouts Place is located on the first floor of the museum and is separated from the rest of the gallery by a low fence, which allows adults to keep track of older children exploring other museum areas.

Sprouts Lab

Sometimes making a mess is how we learn. Head over to Sprouts Lab to experiment and test in a mess-friendly zone. Designed for our youngest scientists, Sprouts Lab is open daily for children birth through age three and, during special times, for children age birth through six. Sprouts Lab is located on the first floor of the museum adjacent to Science Sprouts Place.

Bubble Flow

A favorite for visitors of all ages, the Bubble Flow exhibits provide unexpected “soapy science” experiences! Enjoy classic bubble exhibits such as the Giant Flowing Bubble, Viscosity Tubes, and the Bubble Wall. Explore new bubble exhibits like Foam Fountains and Bubble Domes. Bubbles are a great way to explore concepts such as evaporation, states of matter, shapes, surface tension, density, light, color, and measurements in size, area, diameter, volume and length. The Bubble Flow exhibits are located in the first-floor gallery.

Fitzgerald Hall of Natural Science

Our second floor gallery is where most of WonderLab’s live insects, amphibians and reptiles live in settings that mimic their natural habitats. Exhibits showcase the diversity of the living world, as well as the ancient environment of south-central Indiana as evidenced by fossils. In 2017, WonderLab will be installed the Wonder Under the Waves Saltwater Aquarium a self sustaining coral reef ecosystem, including descendants of animals found in this region’s fossil record.

Learn More About Our Animals

How Things Work

WonderLab encourages visitors of all ages to enjoy the experience of hands-on science. Many  of our exhibits illustrate how things work, highlighting science content such as the properties of air, the properties of water, magnetic and electrical forces, gravity and motion, light and color, health and the human body, and the science of sound. WonderLab believes that learning science is fun and we hope that you’ll take advantage of the many opportunities we offer to play and learn.

Lester P. Bushnell WonderGarden

This outdoor area between the museum building and the B-Line Trail is a natural oasis with flowers, vegetables, herbs, native woodland plants, a water feature and seating. In 2015, a new tower was installed as a nesting area for Chimney Swifts, which come through Bloomington in the fall and spring as part of their migration pattern. The garden offers the opportunity to closely observe nature through the seasons, and includes exhibits about solar power and the science of sound.