Engineering Games + Play

engineering games + play

Take a swing at engineering and science concepts through the lens of your favorite sports and classic hands-on activities. Shoot a basketball and score a home run. Then, launch a paper airplane; or if racing is more your speed, build your own car to send down an adjustable track.

recommended for ages 2-12

exhibit experiences

bernoulli’s hoops

Witness and experience the gravity-defying magic of Bernoulli’s principle at work through the lens of basketball. While directing forced air at different speeds and directions, learners will challenge themselves to sink a basket using only the power of pressure and speed.

Close up of the Flight Zone experience.

flight zone

generously supported by The Boeing Company

Take your engineering skills to new heights and discover the scientific forces that make lift off possible! Fold your own paper airplane and send it flying down the runway with the help of a launcher. How can you make your model fly higher, straighter, and faster?

grand slam science

presented by the annette m. and theodore n. lerner family foundation

Select from a variety of bats and balls—and playful alternatives—in this simulated baseball batting experience! Then, take a swing and discover material science by comparing the results of different combinations.

Girl throwing a baseball at the Pitch Perfect experience.

pitch perfect

presented by the annette m. and theodore n. lerner family foundation

Practice throwing the perfect pitch using different grip methods that affect the rotation of the ball. Take aim at drums and cymbals to strike a note!

on the go-go

presented by the district department of transportation

Design, build and race cars down a giant, adjustable custom race track! Observe how ramp height changes the potential energy, kinetic energy, and the force of gravity, as learners test their cars on adjustable ramps and record their data through finish-line cameras and timers.

what is your child learning?

Doing science (Mechanics and causality: how stuff works and constructing experiments. Design it, build it, test it out, learn!)

Experimentation through active play

Building muscles big and small

Working collaboratively with other children and taking turns

who uses these skills?


Product designer




where is this exhibit located?

Engineering Games + Play is located on Floor 1, one level down from the main entrance, next to Little Movers and Tinkerers Studio.

extra Museum resources

STEAMwork videos

STEAM Daydream with National Children’s Museum podcast

discover STEAM careers

meet a STEAM expert!

The IF/THEN® Initiative is a national effort sponsored by Lyda Hill Philanthropies® to inspire young girls to pursue STEM careers while creating a culture shift in how the world perceives women in STEM.

Dr. Monica Rho

Dr. Monica Rho, sports medicine doctor

If you want to discover how science and medicine relates to the experiences in Engineering Games + Play, meet Monica! As the team physician of the US Women’s National Soccer Team, she uses science to keep the players healthy and performing at their best!