Join us for free history and art activities—with snacks—on weekends and school vacation days this spring. Drop by on any of the days below, at any time between 11:00 am and 2:00 pm, to participate; no reservations required.
Programs are appropriate for families with children ages 6-12 years old.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Chet the Secret Agent Architect: Decoding the Architectural Shapes of the Museum
Saturday, February 8
Sundays, March 2, 9, and 16
Become a secret agent architect as you explore the Museum of the City of New York in this family-friendly scavenger hunt. Learn architectural vocabulary and styles while discovering the secrets of our landmark Colonial Revival building. Afterwards, use these shapes to create model buildings representing your own style.
Sundays, February 9, 16, and 23
Do you have your own sense of style and color? Get inspired by the costumes and jewelry worn by New York’s elite in the late 19th century, on view in Gilded New York. Then learn how to create your own clothing designs by creating a line sheet, a page that highlights many different ideas and styles within one theme. Each child will choose one design and make an original creation on fabric to take home.
Winter Wonderland Collages
School Vacation Days, February 17, 18, 19, and 20
Cold air, mittens, and snowflakes are all reminders that winter is here. Bundle up and join us for festive collage making—the hot chocolate is on us!
Saturdays, March 1 and 8
Sketch from photographs and black books (sketchbooks) showcasing stylized writing and imagery of the city, currently on display in the Museum’s exhibition City as Canvas: Graffiti Art from the Martin Wong Collection. After exploring the art of graffiti writers active in the 1970s and ‘80s, use the techniques they developed to create a flip book of your name.
Pushing Buttons: Activist New York
Sunday, March 23
Saturdays, April 5, 12, 26, and May 3
Have you ever thought that something wasn’t fair and that you wanted to change it? Visit the exhibition Activist New York to learn how New Yorkers have fought for change over the past 350 years. After exploring the gallery, create your own button that expresses a view or idea about a cause that is important to you.
Sundays, March 30 and April 6, 13, and 27
Ellis Island’s Registry Room, Carnegie Hall, the Bronx Zoo’s Elephant House, and Grand Central Terminal all contain vaults—arched ceilings of beautiful, interlocking tile —designed by Rafael Guastavino and his son, immigrants from Spain who came to America in 1881. View images and models of these architectural marvels in the exhibition Palaces for the People: Guastavino and the Art of Structural Tile, and find inspiration in Guastavino’s works to design your own tiled picture frame.
School Vacation Days, April 15, 16, and 17
Join the craftworkers of the International Masonry Institute on the Museum’s terrace for a demonstration of the art of making arches using brick, stone, and tile. Afterwards, try your hand at laying brick with the tools and techniques of the masonry experts. Then explore the extraordinary vaulted ceilings—built with similar methods—designed and constructed by Guastavino Sr. and Jr., featured in the Museum’s exhibition Palaces for the People: Guastavino and the Art of Structural Tile.
Paint and Plant
Saturday, April 19
School Vacation Days, April 21, 22, and May 26
Celebrate spring at the City Museum by decorating your own planter with a cityscape inspired by photographs from the collection. After decorating your planter, start your very own urban garden with a plant native to New York City!
Gilded New York: Jewelry Making
Sundays, May 4, 11, 18, and 25
Get inspired by the jewelry and costumes worn by New York’s elite in the late 19th century on view in Gilded New York. Afterwards, create a brooch that represents your own personal style.
Mural Mural on the Wall
Saturdays, May 10, 17, 24, 31
Get motivated by the styles, colors, and inspirations used by graffiti artists in New York City in the 1970s and ‘80s while exploring the Museum’s exhibition City as Canvas: Graffiti Art from the Martin Wong Collection. Then create a large-scale mural with your family to express your own ideas about life in New York City.
Family Programs are made possible by the generous support of:
Daryl Brown Uber/William E. Weiss Foundation
Lulu & Leo Fund
The Bay and Paul Foundations
Milton & Sally Avery Arts Foundation
Frank J. Antun Foundation
Family programs in conjunction with City As Canvas are made possible by a grant from the Keith Haring Foundation Inc.