#PhillyFromHome: How To Virtually Visit Your Favorite Philly Attractions While in Quarantine
From daily zoo check-ins to educational materials to 360 tours, here’s how you can experience Philly from the safety of your home.
Due to COVID-19, Philly’s top museums and cultural sites are all closed, along with everything else. But that doesn’t mean you’re totally out of luck while you’re staying home! From daily zoo check-ins to educational materials to 360 tours, here’s how you can experience Philly from the safety of your home.
Every weekday at 2 pm, it’s Philly Zoo at 2 on Facebook Live! Explore the zoo, go behind the scenes, talk with experts, and meet some of the zoo’s most amazing creatures. They even introduced the new baby sloth bear that hasn’t been introduced yet to the public—expect more Spring babies as the series goes on!
The Academy has put together lots of fun “Science From Home” ideas, like Magical Moving Milk to Animal Superhero Strength Test. They also made their archive of Academy Kids Club Activity Sheets available for download. In addition to this page of activities, here’s an extra little treat for you. While we may not be able to visit the museum, or our beloved Lulu the baby sloth, she toured the Dinosaur Hall, and you can watch the adorableness unfold here!
The Franklin Institute
The Franklin Institute’s #SparkofScience series showcases some favorite science experiments—including some you can do at home! Additionally, you can go online for interactive activities based on the Your Brain exhibit.
The Aquarium is posting fun worksheets, behind-the-scenes photos, and videos that will give you a different perspective at the animals and their caretakers. Our personal favorites include Hippo Q&A and Penguin Storytime.
While the Museum of the American Revolution is closed to the public, you can explore the Museum and its content from anywhere with free digital resources for all ages, including a Virtual Museum Tour, a Virtual Field Trip, and even comprehensive lesson plans full of primary sources and questions. You can also print out a free “Color the Collection” coloring book for kids based on the Museum’s collection. Looking ahead, the museum is hosting a Virtual Spring Break from April 6—17 with a line-up of choose-your-own virtual adventures including make-at-home craft activities using household items, virtual storytime, living history demonstrations for all ages, weekly colonial cooking demos, and more.
Independence Seaport Museum
On the museum’s digital resource page, you’ll find online catalog and exhibits. High school students can dive into River Alive! and explore the Delaware River watershed with a digital curriculum guide for grades 9-12. Meanwhile, younger kids can find a collection of coloring pages, and even a printable model to build their own paper Olympia warship. This little model was originally printed in the Philadelphia Press newspaper in 1896!
National Constitution Center
The National Constitution Center hosts free, live, interactive constitutional classes, as well as videos, podcasts, and more at their Interactive Constitution. Open source sessions take place on Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays, with separate sessions for middle school students and high school and college students.
Betsy Ross House
Take a virtual tour of the Betsy Ross House and follow them on Instagram (@TheBetsyRossHouse) or Facebook for fun facts and short videos by Betsy, herself, which will be posted regularly to give viewers a glimpse at 18th Century life.
The Barnes Foundation started a new digital initiative, the Barnes Takeout, which features Barnes curators, scholars, and educators sharing their thoughts about some favorite works in the collection every day on YouTube. You can also view the collection online, and sign up for some advanced online classes to delve deeper into select topics.
Take a virtual 360 tour of Isaiah Zagar’s incredible mosaic labyrinth. You can also download free activity sheets and coloring pages, including a game of PMG Bingo. In addition, PMG has started releasing “Crafting Through Corona” videos on YouTube!
PAFA has launched a new initiative, PAFA from Home: Inspiration Everywhere, Anywhere with a variety of resources including a catalog of PAFA’s permanent collection and a virtual 360 tour! Additional educational programs, including Saturday Classes on Digital Animation for Middle School Students, are being offered online, as well.
Philadelphia Museum of Art
Explore the art museum’s collection online, and find lesson plans in the online Art Speaks resource which integrates visual arts with language arts, and includes a downloadable teaching booklet, presentation, image cards, and worksheets.
In response to the coronavirus crisis, the orchestra has launched Virtual Philadelphia Orchestra to bring music, in video and audio forms, as well as interactive education and enrichment into your home. Every Thursday night you can watch a different concert from the archives, and they will also have a catalog of concerts in their listening library. Participants of all ages can also learn from, and engage with, musicians of the Orchestra through virtual learning opportunities, including panel discussions, master classes, and more.
Lead photograph courtesy of Museum of the American Revolution.