Outside In

girl calmly holding a Madagascar Hissing Coackroach in Outside In 

Welcome to Outside In, the children’s discovery center at the Academy. After a month-long makeover in February 2014, the popular hands-on exhibit has reopened with exciting new activities and renovated play areas. Designed for children ages 3–8 and their parents, Outside In is a warm, welcoming place where inquisitive youngsters can investigate a forest, visit the seashore, see and touch live animals, and much more.

Some new elements to look for on your next visit include:

  • an eagle’s nest kids can climb into and pretend to be a majestic bird
  • a nature lab filled touchable animal skulls, furs, claws and teeth
  • a large-screen projection of natural objects that can be swapped in and out
  • a sandy beach to play in
  • a life-size tree with hidden animals children can enjoy rediscovering with each visit
  • costumes for dramatic dress-up
  • nature books and comfy critter pillows to relax on

Interested in reserving Outside In for your class or group field trip? See In-Depth Exhibit Experiences  for more information.

This exhibit is one of our more popular venues for volunteering. If you enjoy working with small children and are interested in volunteering, please see Volunteering at the Academy for more information.

Inspired by the curiosity and enthusiasm of Outside In’s regular visitors, the Academy has created the Adopt-A-Critter program, which offers an opportunity to help us care for the center and its animals. To learn more about how you can support the Adopt-A-Critter program, visit Adopt-A-Critter or call the Office of Institutional Advancement at 215-299-1122.

Plan your visit, check out our new exhibits, and find out about upcoming activities.
Discover the past and explore the future of the natural sciences in our online exhibits.
Make a difference, browse our programs, and get involved with the natural world.