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Plop Your Kids In Front Of The Petersen Automotive Museum's Educational Livestreams This Week

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Photo: Kevin McCauley (Jalopnik)

If you’re looking for ways to entertain your kids while your whole family’s stuck at home waiting out the covid-19 pandemic, the Petersen Automotive Museum’s going to be streaming some educational child-friendly content this week.

The museum, like just about everything else it seems, is closed to the public “until March 31, 2020, or until further notice.” But if you have an internet connection you can check out its website for some free learning opportunities and amusements. From the museum’s press release:

“For students looking for supplemental learning activities during school closures, the Petersen Automotive Museum will offer free educational live streams twice daily beginning Tuesday, March 17, 2020. Daily presentations will consist of a lecture at 10 a.m. and a hands-on activity at 1 p.m. In addition, to live stream programming, the museum will offer downloadable worksheets and coloring sheets.


For your reference, the presentation will be targeted for “children 12 and under” but that doesn’t mean the rest of us won’t learn something!

Here’s the link.

And here’s the schedule, if you’re interested:

  • Tuesday, March 17, 10 a.m. – Force and Motion Cars are about motion. While it may seem simple to press a pedal and move forward, there are dozens of forces interacting that must be balanced to produce motion. From Newton’s laws to different types of energy, students will learn the simple physics behind the automobile.
  • Tuesday, March 17, 1 p.m. – Balloon Cars For a car to move, a force must be applied. Students will explore propulsion and Newton’s Third Law of Motion by making their own balloon cars.
  • Wednesday, March 18, 10 a.m. – History of the Car Cars have been in existence for more than a century (or longer, depending on when you start). Join the Petersen as it explores the evolution of the automobile.
  • Wednesday, March 18, 1 p.m. – License Plates License plates identify vehicles as properly registered with the state but may also serve as a canvas. Students will create their own license plates and decorate them to show off something about their home state.
  • Thursday, March 19, 10 a.m. – Storytime Featuring “Go, Dog, Go!” By P.D. Eastman Students will read the beloved tale about dogs and their cars.
  • Thursday, March 19, 1 p.m. – Animal Cars Students will make a car of their favorite animal with materials found around the house.
  • Friday, March 20, 10 a.m. – Design Process Utilizing the car, students will explore how things go from idea to finished product.
  • Friday, March 20, 1 p.m. – Car Models A critical part of automotive design is creating a model. Students will create car models to show how the modeling process can help to explore design choices. Future lessons will cover propulsion, aerodynamics, racing and a host of other topics.

Those times will be Pacific since the museum is of course in Los Angeles. Stay safe, friends.

Or, if you just wish you could take a walk around the museum right now, why not scroll through this old Jalopnik photo gallery from 2015 after the Petersen reopened post-redesign?