The New Children’s Museum is strongly committed to being a community resource and continues to expand its reach throughout San Diego. The Museum has multiple programs designed to reach deeply into local communities and stimulate, cultivate and nurture creativity for children and families.

Access programming generously supported by The Hearst Foundations.

Community Engagement

Mass Creativity. Since 2013, the Mass Creativity program has touched the lives of over 15,000 children and their families. This annual program includes collaboratively-designed art workshops at community centers throughout the County and culminates in a free all-day festival at the Museum that brings artists, workshop participants and the general public together for a day of art, music, entertainment, activities and more.

Mi Familia, Mi Historia. Inspired by Mass Creativity, the Museum is collaborating with Casa Familiar and UCSD’s Institute of Arts and Humanities to engage Latino/a families living in San Ysidro through creative activities and documenting family stories. This two-year program (2017-2018) is funded by a California Humanities grant.

Comunidad. This two-year program (2018-2019) also extends the impact of Mass Creativity through strengthened relationships and increased activities with multiple community partners including Casa Familiar, and South Bay Community Services.

pARTners in Creativity

We partner with social service and other organizations that share our passion for providing educational experiences with art. Through pARTners in Creativity, we host group visits for children and families from lower socioeconomic backgrounds, with special needs or other life challenges. We’ve worked with numerous organizations since re-opening in 2008. Recent partners have included: ARTS: A Reason to Survive, Becky’s House, Braille Institute, Include Autism, Migrant Education, Monarch School, Ronald McDonald House Charities, San Diego Center for Children, SDYS Foster Care, Support the Enlisted Project (STEP), USO San Diego, Vista Hills, Words Alive and YWCA. We also accommodate Voices for Children visits for CASA volunteers and foster children.

pARTners in Creativity is made possible through generous support from CarMax Foundation, the Ellen Browning Scripps Foundation, Issa Family Foundation, Southwest Airlines and USS Midway Foundation.

For more information about pARTners in Creativity, please contact our education department at education@thinkplaycreate.org.

Salute Our Troops: Military Access

The Museum embraces military families and strives to provide an affordable, enriching place for them to feel appreciated and at home. In addition to discounted admission all year long, the Museum participates in Blue Star Museums with over 2,000 museums nationwide to provide free admission between Memorial Day and Labor Day each year. Some military groups participate in our pARTners in Creativity program.

Our military effort is sponsored in part by U.S. Bank, the David C. Copley Foundation, the Issa Family Foundation and the Walter J. & Betty C. Zable Foundation.

Museums for All Initiative

The Museum is now participating in the Museums for All initiative. Museums for All is a cooperative initiative between ACM and IMLS to offer a signature access program that encourages families of all backgrounds to visit museums regularly and build lifelong museum habits. Present your Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card and photo ID at the Welcome Desk to receive $1 admission for up to 4 people.

Museums for All is sponsored in part by QUALCOMM Incorporated. 

Accessibility Mornings

The Museum hosts Accessibility Mornings regularly throughout the year. With a variety of high-sensory activities and designated sensory-break zones, Accessibility Mornings provide disabled families the opportunity to explore the Museum with comfort and safety before the Museum opens to the general public (and then stay for the day if desired).

Our next Accessibility Morning will be held Saturday, August 25 from 8-9:30am. Discounted admission is $8/child, with adults/caregivers free.  Discounted $5 parking is also available. RSVP required – registration form will be available on our site July 20.

Check Out NCM Library Pass

The Museum offers a 10-day Museum Pass through San Diego City and County library branches. Thousands of children and families have been able to “check out” what the Museum has to offer for free through the Check Out NCM pass. These passes are valid for up to four people per visit as well as a 50% discount on parking in our garage.

Schools and Groups

Thousands of children each year come for school visits at little to no cost through our Title I Access Program. We also work with an increasing number of organizations who serve children with disabilities and other life challenges.

CASAs

Our Museum maintains a partnership with the CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate) Association, granting free admission to children and program volunteers. To take advantage of our program, just come in to the Museum with your identification card and your child to enjoy a free day at the Museum. For more information contact us at education@thinkplaycreate.org.

Museum Collaborations

The Museum participates with San Diego’s 40+ museums through the San Diego Museum Council to provide free and discounted access for San Diego residents and tourists. The Museum provides half off in February (during Museum Month) and free admission for kids in October (through Kids Free October). The Museum is also an active member of the Association of Children’s Museums (ACM) that nationally includes over 200 children’s museums. All of our Museum members receive half off admission at ACM member organizations across the United States.

Accessibility Morning!

Join us Saturday, August 25th from 8:00am to 9:30am for a variety of high-sensory activities and designated sensory-break zones. Our Accessibility Mornings give special needs families the opportunity to explore the Museum with comfort and safety before the Museum opens to the general public. Register here!