Press Release AlegreMENTE | Happy Brain Opens at National Children’s Museum This Fall

press release

AlegreMENTE | Happy Brain Opens at National Children’s Museum This Fall 

September 6, 2023

The intergenerational, bilingual exhibit highlights the importance of play for young brains 

WASHINGTON – Did you know that play—pure, joyful discovery—is fundamentally important for learning 21st-century skills, such as problem solving, collaboration and creativity? And that these skills are shown to improve executive functioning, which is an indicator of adult success?¹

This fall, National Children’s Museum welcomes AlegreMENTE | Happy Brain: Celebrating Early Connections, a bilingual Spanish/English exhibit that invites young learners 0-5 and their caregivers to learn about healthy brain development through play. Opening September 16 in the Museum’s Visiting Exhibit Hall, the AlegreMENTE | Happy Brain exhibit focuses on the basics of early brain development using interactive features set in a whimsical forest, including a light-up tilt table, dance studio, creative storytelling game and dedicated infant area.

Developed and produced by the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, AlegreMENTE | Happy Brain offers a fully immersive, interactive experience where kids play and adults learn about how simple, everyday interactions build social-emotional, language, cognitive and motor skills for a lifetime. This enables caregivers to explore alongside their children, discovering they’re equipped with everything they need to support early brain development and build healthy connections.

“Play is at the center of our work to inspire children to care about and change the world because research shows it’s how children learn best,” said Crystal R. Bowyer, president and CEO of National Children’s Museum. “This exhibit is as valuable for caregivers as it is fun for children because it breaks down the educational value of the playful interactions they share on a daily basis.”

AlegreMENTE | Happy Brain: Celebrating Early Connections is on exhibit through January 1, 2024, and is included in the cost of Museum admission. For more information about the exhibit at National Children’s Museum, please visit the Museum’s website:

Located at 1300 Pennsylvania Avenue NW off the Woodrow Wilson Plaza, National Children’s Museum is open 9:30 am to 4:30 pm every day except Tuesdays.

¹ Michael Yogman, MD, FAAP, Andrew Garner, MD, PhD, FAAP, Jeffrey Hutchinson, MD, FAAP, Kathy Hirsh-Pasek, PhD, Roberta Michnick Golinkoff, PhD. “The Power of Play: A Pediatric Role in Enhancing Development in Young Children,” American Academy of Pediatrics Journal. Volume 142, Number 3, September 2018.


About National Children’s Museum 

STEAM adventure awaits at National Children’s Museum, located in the heart of downtown Washington, D.C. With a mission to inspire children to care about and change the world, the Museum sparks curiosity and ignites creativity for children under the age of twelve and their families. Through playful science, technology, engineering, arts and math (STEAM) based exhibits, programs and virtual offerings, the Museum reaches millions of people each year. Learn more and plan your visit at

About Oregon Museum of Science and Industry

Founded in 1944, the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI) is one of the nation’s leading science museums, a world class tourist attraction, and an award-winning educational resource for the kid in each of us. OMSI operates the largest museum-based outdoor science education program in the country and provides traveling and community outreach programs that bring science learning opportunities to schools and community organizations in nearly every county in Oregon. OMSI is located at 1945 SE Water Avenue, Portland, OR 97214. For general information, call 503.797.4000 or visit Connect with the museum on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

press resources

The below images may be used by press courtesy of the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry. Download a zip file of the high resolution images.

Illuminado el cerebro | Lighting Up the Brain
Piscina infantil | Infant Pool
Uno encima de otro | Stack It Up
Fiesta alegre | Happy Dance