Watch: The Exploratorium, A Gateway to the World

Through inquiry-based, hands-on experiences, the Exploratorium has been changing the way its visitors view the world for decades.

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“I remember feeling there was going to be a lot to discover,” says Lianna Kali, of her first visit to the Exploratorium, now located along the Embarcadero in San Francisco. These days, as a program leader for the museum’s Tinkering Studio, Kali leads visitors of all ages through the same process of discovery she experienced as a kid. Experimentation — through light, sound, wind and physical objects — is at the heart of the Tinkering Studio experience. “The kids who come here may not have experienced science in a hands-on way before,” says Kali. “And I know that it can be a transformative, lifelong experience. Because it happened to me.”

In this video, Kali, with an archival cameo from the museum’s late, legendary founder Frank Oppenheimer, provides a behind-the-scenes look at what makes the Exploratorium experience a singular one — and how the space acts as a “portal into your own curiosity.”

The Exploratorium joined the Science Sandbox community of awardees in November 2017.

Stories of Impact highlight the real-world influences of Science Sandbox projects through personal narratives, videos and interviews. Discover more stories here.