Tyrannosaurs Scienceworks

Tyrannosaurs – Meet the Family is Scienceworks’ latest exhibition which opens this Saturday 23 May and it’s certain to be a blockbuster. What kid doesn’t like dinosaurs?

tyrannosaurs sciencewoks

The exhibition was developed by Australian Museum in Canberra and it’s a fun, informative and interactive display that showcases the tyrannosaur family tree and the latest scientific discoveries. Turns out there’s more to tyrannosaurs than T-Rex.

tyrannosaurs sciencewoks

The exhibition covers four rooms which are all very dimly lit, with the sounds of dinos roaring adding a rather scary ambience. As such, depending on your child the exhibition may not be suitable for very young kids who may be freaked out by the threatening atmosphere.

tyrannosaurs sciencewoks

There are several fossil specimens to see but most of the big structures are casts of tyrannosaur specimens. There are over 10 life-sized dinosaur skeletons – keep an eye out for the dino skeleton shadow that moves….

tyrannosaurs sciencewoks

There is lots of interesting dinosaur information for budding paleontologists to absorb but for younger kids the hands-on experiences will be the most attractive.

Lady AB had great fun manipulating the digital dinosaurs on screen while I read aloud the simple factoids. She also enjoyed ‘hatching’ the dino eggs and didn’t want to leave.

tyrannosaurs sciencewoks

The highlight is the large-scale projections of dinosaurs running through the streets of Spotswood! We were mesmerised.

tyrannosaurs sciencewoks

tyrannosaurs sciencewoks

As you leave there is an augmented reality video which allows visitors to interact and play with members of the tyrannosaur family.  My kids were so freaked out by the idea of dinosaurs in the gallery that they stood stock still with their mouths agape!

tyrannosaurs sciencewoks

To complement the exhibition, Scienceworks will host a series of public programs for families, including dinosaur themed winter school holiday activities, Family Science Nights with after-hours exhibition viewing and Meet the Expert talks. If you enter the Junior Dino Expert Competition your little dino expert can win an amazing dino prize pack and a behind the scenes tour of the palaeontology department with a Museum Victoria palaeontologist.

Plus if you go to Federation  Square tomorrow 12-4pm you’ll see Scotty the T-rex come to life!

HOT tips:

  • be prepared for a dark, rather scary environment which may not be suitable for all kids;
  • lots of space to wheel a pram;
  • very young kids may not be able to reach the hands-on multimedia; and
  • the museum cafe has dino-themed lunch boxes for kids for $8.50!

Tyrannosaurs – Meet the Family, Scienceworks, 2 Booker Street, Spotswood

Saturday 23 May – Sunday 4 October 10:00AM – 4:30PM

Adult $10 | Child $8 | Concession $9 | General entry to Scienceworks included

Phone 13 11 02 or book online

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axil coffee

Why did the blogger (who doesn’t drink coffee) cross town to visit Axil Coffee Roasters in Hawthorn?

No, not to get to the other side. Because Axil Coffee Roasters do more than just roast coffee – they put on a magnificent spread from the kitchen, 7 days a week starting from the wee hours of the morning. Yes, breakfast at 7am – even on weekends – for the parents among us!

axil coffee

The signage outside the venue is understated and you wouldn’t imagine that behind the awning there’s a vast warehouse space filled with a black walls, polished concrete, greenery and timber. There’s so much room you could fit a couple of prams here but there’s no need to hide your baby under the table in the pram as they have high chairs too.

axil coffee

This is one serious cafe.

Anyway, it goes without saying that the coffee must be excellent (the cafe won Best Coffee in The Age Good Cafe Guide 2013), so let’s switch to the food. It was pretty adventurous fare but there’s enough to satisfy all tastes, even basic kiddie ones.

axil coffee

Because I’m a huge smoked salmon fan I went with the housemade salmon pastrami ($20). It was a generous mound of thinly sliced and lightly spiced raw fish draped over a tangy yellow pickled zucchini and some crunchy celeriac croquettes. The wobbly poached egg on top oozed yolk so luckily for the spoonful of beetroot relish cutting through the richness. It was a beautifully presented tower of breakfast with lots of bright hues and vivid flavours.

axil coffee

Not content to try just one breakfast dish I ordered a breakfast dessert – red velvet pancakes. These are cupcakes disguised in pancake form! Three ethereally light deep crimson pancakes topped with a decadent mix of raspberries and a cream cheese ganache instead of the usual cream cheese frosting ($16.50). The cherry on top was the inky black sesame icecream which added a cool intensity to the mix. These spectacular pancakes are not to be missed if you have a sweet tooth!

I was delighted with the service at Axil Coffee Roasters too. They didn’t raise an eyebrow when I declined to order coffee and brought me newspapers and the food very promptly. As I was leaving the tables were starting to fill up with cyclists and young families doing the early morning shift.

With a reputation for good coffee and food of such excellent quality, no doubt Axil Coffee Roasters will continue to attract families needing that hit of caffeine and/or interesting, well-priced meals.

Features:

  • pram access;
  • high chairs; and
  • standard menu suitable for kids    .

Axil Coffee Roasters, 322 Burwood Rd, Hawthorn (03) 9819 0091

Mon to Sun 7:00 am – 4:00 pm

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tromarama

Open House: Tromarama for Kids is NGV International’s newest children’s gallery exhibition. Indonesian contemporary art collective Tromarama (Febie Babyrose, Herbert Hans and Ruddy Hatumena), have truly built a house of fun!

tromarama

tromarama

tromarama

The fantastical space features five fully furnished rooms – a kitchen, dining room, courtyard, bedroom and bathroom. The whole house comes to life and It has lots for kids (and adults) to explore and we spent about an hour inside.

tromarama

tromarama

tromarama

Start off in the bathroom and very comfy pillow-lined bedroom, where you can learn to make simple stop motion animation movies.

tromarama

Just take some toys from the bathtub, find a backdrop you like, use the touch screens to take photos  and off you go!

tromarama

I was surprised that Lady AB understood what to do very quickly and she was thrilled with her work. In fact, we spent the majority of the time there because she wanted to use every. single. screen. :)

tromarama

Move into the lush garden with the flower wall which reminded me of the Raf Simons’ extravagant first collection for Christian Dior. Pity the flowers aren’t real!

tromarama

In the garden you’ll find that pink flamingos talk and cheeky garden gnomes chat back with your voice!

tromarama

The kitchen is the most restful space, with stacks of ceramic crockery (thankfully stuck together and to the benches) and it shows a delightful animation of dancing plates and cups.

tromarama

Tromarama’s video works are interspersed around all the rooms and they shared a theme of showing ordinary household objects coming to life in extraordinary and playful ways.

tromarama

The highlight of the interactive experiences has got to be the disco dance floor. Look up and you’ll see a complete dining room setting, which means you’re dancing on the ceiling!

tromarama

Like Darren Sylvester’s dance floor for the Melbourne Now exhibition this room will definitely be a drawcard.

tromarama

Open House: Tromarama for Kids is a must-see on your next to visit the gallery and it will be sure to delight and surprise kids and adults alike. Come out and play!

HOT tips:

  • take a camera – the space is very photogenic!
  • Some of the stop motion screens were too high for 4yo Lady AB, which she found frustrating. I spoke to a NGV staff member to try and get some stools so that little kids could still have a go.
  • You can push a pram around but you’ll struggle to keep kids inside!
  • Try to go during off-peak hours. The space is extremely stimulating on the senses (especially the dance floor) and crowds can make it too overwhelming for young kids. Older kids tend to dominate the space once they’re inside. Note school groups tend to arrive in the morning on Thursdays and Fridays, so try to avoid those times. If you have to go on the weekend, be there at 10am when it opens.
  • If you’re a NGV member then attend the Members Family Preview at 9am on Saturday 23 May, before doors open to the public at 10am.

Open House: Tromarama for Kids, NGV International, 180 St Kilda Rd, Melbourne

Saturday 23 May – Sunday 18 Oct

Open 10am–5pm

Closed Tuesday

Free entry

 

 

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Brothers-Quibble

Here’s this week’s bumper list of events for what’s happening for under 5s around town. Wednesday 27 May is National Simultaneous Storytime so check your local library for events happening that day. Here’s my review of the book, The Brothers Quibble by Aaron Blabey.

CBD / DOCKLANDS

NORTH

SOUTH / SOUTH-EAST / BAYSIDE

EAST

WEST

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HOT: Airoworld Inflatable Playground, Cnr Grieve Pde & Doherty Rd, Altona North

May 20, 2015

Airoworld Inflatable Playground in Altona is a perfect wet/cold weather option for energetic kids. It’s bouncy castles galore with colourful slides, jumping castles, mazes, climbing wall, velcro wall and jousting ring. Lady AB and Baby 2.0 lost their minds! I feel that Airoworld has several advantages over its nearby competitor: the space is loftier so […]

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HOT: Roominate – Building Toys for Girls

May 19, 2015

As you know I have a particular interest in architecture and design and encouraging girls into STEM (science, technology, engineering, maths) education. So I am very excited about Roominate, building toys oriented for girls which has just been released in Australia. Roominate is a dollhouse you can design, build and wire. Each kit contains a […]

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