Monday, January 4, 2010

Kids At Heart

Monday, January 4, 2010
*author's note: I intend to edit this piece for use in my writing portfolio for BusinessWorld. - MB

SM Science Discovery Center
SM Mall of Asia, MANILA
Operating Hours: 10 a.m.-10 p.m.
Rates: All-Day Pass = P330
Kiddie Pass (for kids 4 feet and below) = P150

Some of the best dates happen in places that aren't what you'd call "romantic." Before the end of the year, Sam and I decided to give the SM Science Discovery Center in Mall of Asia a try.
The entrance fee is P330 each for the whole day, inclusive of one show at the Planetarium and unlimited access to the Center. The kiddie pass is P150 each.
The first exhibit we encountered was the Bug Rug. It's a simulation that's meant to show people how field scientists catch and study bugs in the forest. In reality, we ended up just trying to scare bugs or altering their paths just for fun, which was what most of the kids did when it was their turn with the exhibit.
There are also computers wherein you can play Plants vs. Zombies or Wheel of Fortune. In the same area, there is also an interactive exhibit where a camera captures your movements and allows you to virtually play instruments or play volleyball with the computer.
Transportation Nation is all about cars and other modes of transportation. You can try out the flight simulator booths, similar to racing games in a standard arcade, as well as build your own car part by part, which is then tested for cost, safety, etc. You can also find the first car in the Philippines on display here.
For those with a fondness for gross things, there's Grossology. There's a trivia game you can play with your friends, a game that's similar to a large version of Operation, an exhibit where you are asked to smell something and you have to guess which body part that smell comes from, and many more.
The virtual reef is a tour of reefs and the sea creatures that live there. The most interesting part of that exhibit was Mr. T, a virtual fish voiced by a real person. When we were there, a family had beaten us to Mr. T. One of the kids asked Mr. T if he spoke Tagalog, and Mr. T answered that he did, but he'd rather not. I have to hand it to the guy, though. He knew the answer to all the questions that the kids asked him, and he gave them a pretty good runaround with the Tagalog query.
The Planetarium was a pretty amazing experience for me. The theater is circular and the seats are adjusted so that you look up at an angle. We opted for the film Dark Star Adventure, which was about black holes, wormholes, super novas, etc. In my opinion, it was an okay film, but I give a thumbs-up to the way the science facts were presented, as well as the bond between the lead girl Subrah and her robot friend Sweeps.
Another exhibit is City Science, which has a comparison of the heights of the tallest buildings in the world, as well as an earthquake simulator (which was closed for preventive maintenance at the time of our visit).
My two favorite exhibits would have to be the Time Clock, wherein you could send an email to yourself in the far future, and the Fear Wall. The Fear Wall, as the name suggests, is about the science of fear. Your shadows are projected onto a wall wherein you can see a leopard and a fruit tree. Fruits fall from the tree and you catch the fruits using your shadow's hands. The catch is, if the leopard sees you moving, he will "eat" you. The best part is, there is a video grab of whatever it is you do on the fear wall, and you can then email the video to yourself. Below is our video from Snibbe Interactive. Enjoy. :)


Related Posts with Thumbnails