Exploring with Children Under 7

There’s a lot to see and do at the Museum – more than can be done in a single visit. This section provides a guide for visiting with children under 7, to help you plan your visit.

This suggested pathway through the Museum takes about 45 minutes.  

Level 1: Bonnie & John Buhler Hall

  • This building is an adventure! Did you know that the whole building represents a climb from darkness to light? Starting below ground level in Bonnie & John Buhler Hall, you can take a quest-like journey up a stunning series of ramps connecting the galleries. Near the top, you can take a glass elevator ride to the viewing platform on the Tower of Hope.
  • As you start your journey, do you see a projection of people writing “Welcome” on a wall in many languages? This tells you that everyone is welcome at the Museum. No matter where you’re from, how old you are or what your abilities are, you belong here.
  • Have a look at the architectural model of the Museum. Can you see how the building has stone “roots” that anchor it to the earth, a “mountain” section that is heavy and solid, and a “cloud” made of glass?
  • Find the bronze cast of a human footprint and try putting your foot in it! Just imagine: hundreds of years ago, someone wearing a moccasin left this print on the land where the Museum now stands.

Level 2: Indigenous Perspectives

  • In the Indigenous Perspectives gallery, sit inside the circular theatre to watch a short, family-friendly film about Indigenous ways of viewing rights and responsibilities. On the wraparound movie screen, you’ll meet people from four generations and explore the idea that everyone and everything is interconnected.
  • Find the beadwork sample that you can touch. Feel how tiny each bead is and how much care went into the beading. Then look up to see one of the largest examples of Métis beadwork anywhere in the world.

Level 2: Canadian Journeys

  • In the centre of the Canadian Journeys gallery, join in the motion-sensor Lights of Inclusion game. Watch how your movements activate a “bubble” of coloured light on the floor around you. What happens when you interact and cooperate with other players?

Level 3: Garden of Contemplation

In the Garden of Contemplation, take a break and relax. This peaceful, open space with a soaring ceiling is a great place to appreciate the building’s glass “cloud,” notice Museum staff working on the mezzanine levels, and gaze up at the towering elevator shaft and spiral staircase that lead to the Tower of Hope.

Level 5: Rights Today

In the Rights Today gallery, find the display of Everyday Objects such as cell phones and plastic bags. Explore how items we use every day are connected to human rights in both positive and negative ways. What do you use plastic bags for at home? Do you think you could make a soccer ball out of plastic bags?

Level 7: Inspiring Change

In the Inspiring Change gallery, write or draw a personal human rights message on an Imagine Card. Use the colourful pens and blank cards to envision a better world in any way you wish. Then add your card to the display.

Level 7: Tower of Hope

Just outside the Inspiring Change gallery, you can start your climb – by staircase or elevator – to the Tower of Hope. After seeing the panoramic view, you can use the elevators to return to the main entrance, or walk down using the Museum’s system of ramps.