Visiting The Tech Interactive: what to see and do in this San Jose museum, including their IMAX dome theater.
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Silicon Valley Days Out With Kids: Visiting The Tech Interactive in San Jose
San Jose’s The Tech Interactive embraces its location in the heart of Silicon Valley, featuring hands-on, interactive STEM and STEAM exhibits. This post features a few of our favorite exhibits a recent visit my 10-year-old and I made to the museum, including a stop in the museum’s iMax theater.
In the photo collage at the top of the post, my 10-year-old is learning about robotics through an exhibit about Furby in the top left photo. The lights exhibit in the top right photo is interactive; you turn the lights to turn them on, and also to make them change color. This allows for all sorts of creative patterns. The lower left photo features her “riding” a roller coaster that she designed herself. Designs that the law of physics won’t allow don’t work. The lower right photo features her looking at coins using a microscope.
The museum is enormous – 130,000 feet, spread across two levels. We spent a day there and didn’t see everything, even with a couple of sections of the museum closed for renovations. The museum also offers a few virtual programs.
The Tech Interactive Solve for Earth Exhibit
The Solve for Earth Exhibit is brand new! Children turn dials and see how their decisions impact planet earth. It’s kind of like the computer game Sim City from my childhood, but faster paced and focused on sustainability.
The Tech Interactive Bay Area Cities Exhibit
We live in the Bay Area, and my daughter loved exploring local cities over time, learning about their history, culture, and geography. She also got to design her own buildings, experiment with different transportation systems, and learn about challenges faced by local cities.
Art, Music, and Technology
It’s no surprise that my art loving daughter enjoyed the art, music, and technology museum exhibit. In the above photo, she used LEGO Duplo bricks to create an animal, scanned the animal to see if the computer could recognize it, and then customized the animal and sent it to join the other animals on the screen.
Here, children, manipulate the different shapes and see the results projected onto the wall.
Cyber Security Lessons at San Jose’s The Tech Interactive Museum
There was an entire exhibit in the museum dedicated to teaching children how to be safe online. It was a popular exhibit, and I think it’s a critical life skill in the 21st century.
This section of the museum also included this fun coding activity, where my daughter coded a Rube Goldberg style machine.
The BioDesign Studio
My daughter didn’t particularly love this exhibit, but we saw other kids loving this exhibit’s focus on physical activity. She did love making Algae string in the BioTinkering lab.
The Tech Interactive Imax Theater
Imax theaters are always an experience! We watched a pretty intense movie about global warming while we were there. The theater also shows a bunch of less serious movies, including Marvel movies!
As I mentioned before, this is a very large museum. We didn’t even begin to see everything. We’ll just have to go back!
Have you ever visited The Tech Interactive? What did you think? What was your favorite exhibit?
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MaryAnne lives is a craft loving educator, musician, photographer, and writer who lives in Silicon Valley with her husband Mike and their four children.
2 thoughts on “Visiting The Tech Interactive in San Jose”
That looks like a great museum! One of the rare museums like that not solely catering to younger kids, which so many museums are.
Yes! Older kids love to learn with hands-on exhibits, too!