Habitot Children's Museum

Rating: 4.85 stars   94 reviews

Address:

2065 Kittredge St Berkeley CA 94704 USA

Mission:

Habitot’s mission is to help the broad community of parents and caregivers raise curious, creative and confident children. Hands-on exhibits and programs focus exclusively on early childhood.

Programs:

* Hands-on Exhibits Six permanent exhibits and one temporary exhibit encourage imagination, curiosity, problem-solving, social interaction, communication skills and parent-child connection. Exhibits include Waterworks, Little Town, Wind Tunnel, Infant-Toddler Garden. The current temporary exhibit is the Rocketship 80,000 visitors a year * Public Programs include three dozen multicultural events and performances throughout the year in music, art, dance, performance, storytelling and puppetry. Special Family Literacy Nights foster reading readiness and Child Safety events help prevent unintended accidents among young children. 10,000 participants a year * Art Programs include a drop-in Art Studio (included with admission) with changing daily activities, an Art Reach program taking arts to low income community preschools, and on-site focused art classes for children in ceramics, mixed media, and painting. 45,000 beneficiaries * Parent Education includes an in-museum Family Resource Center of books and other parenting references, 50 parenting classes a year on topics ranging from CPR and chokesaving to positive discipline strategies, and Parent-to-Parent brochures on parenting topics 5000 direct beneficiaries * Family Outreach Program designed to make Habitot's exhibits and programs available to a wide audience, especially low-income families and at-risk children. We offer free field trips to Head Start and state-supported preschools, free admission days, subsidized memberships, class scholarships, teen parent programs, book give-aways and organizational and library memberships for clients of social service agencies, hospital programs, homeless shelters, literacy programs, and teen parent programs. 8,329 direct beneficiaries

2015 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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More Info

www.habitot.org

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Reviews for Habitot Children's Museum

Rating: 5 stars  

Habitot is one of the most unique and special children's museum. They make sure that ALL families, regardless of their income, ability, ethnicity, or background, are able to experience learning through play. I was so inspired by their campaign to give birthday parties to kids experiencing homelessness too. Habitot is raising money right now for children without a home to call their own, so that they may enjoy a private birthday party all to themselves . Please check it out and share what you can: http://igg.me/at/BirthdayPartiesforHomelessKids/x

I see families and children engaging in play, learning, discovering, and taking advantage of the free family bonding classes, and parenting education workshops too. Children with special needs, especially in the autism spectrum, are able to enjoy the entire museum with other families just like theirs in the "Special Times for Special Families program too. I really can't say enough about how incredible this place is for young children and their families.

I couldn't even believe that Habitot has been able to stay strong as a Berkeley institution for almost 18 years, having an impact on over 1,000,000 children and families.

Every time I come here with my little girl, we have such a good time, we make new friends, and we always get a treat across the street at Cafe Clem!

Thank you Berkeley for giving us such an amazing place!

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

Habitot is the perfect place for babies and toddlers to explore their new and changing abilities.

My grandson has a wonderful time learning about paint and colors - painting with big brushes on the big paint wall, dropping drops of paint on coffee filters and seeing the colors meld into new colors, stretching and pressing clay forms. The face painting area is a particular favorite place to make funny faces on himself and on me!
So many things that catch his attention!
The Train table with many trains to move around - being cooperative with other kids who want to play.
The ambulance with two steering wheels and a big bench seat for kids to pretend to drive fast to help the injured.
The Veterinary corner with all the dogs in cages and a pet washing area (sans water - thank goodness!)
The nursery area for babydolls to be clothed and bottle fed and examined by the pretend doctors.
The wind tunnel with flowers to toss in the air so they scatter about - plenty of brooms and dustbins to practice sweeping up.
Lots of big toys to climb into and out of and push. Police cars, fire engines, taxi cabs.

At least until recently when it changed to a big block area, our favorite area was the water play zone and car wash. Splashing encouraged! Playing with water to see which direction it runs when you pour it down tubes, into cups and pumps.

And so many toys to take home from their lending library - wow! We would never be able to buy all they toys he has check out. And his taste in toys changes so fast - the lending library is a great asset to our family.

The staff seem very well versed in the REI concepts - treating your young one like a whole person and letting them learn by "doing themselves" rather than taking away their fun and showing them "what is the right way". Ha! Like there is only one right way - not!

The hours work great for us (mornings and all day on Friday) - we try to stop soon enough to get home in time for nap...but it isn't easy leaving such a fun place.

 
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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

My daughter love it habitot, we enjoys days for parents with special needs.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2015

 
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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

We've been happy visitors to Habitot for a couple of years now. It's not the most flashy of places, but my 2yo and 4yo can't get enough- they would play there every day if they could. The activities are so age-appropriate, and it's contained enough that I can manage taking both kids there by myself (a surprisingly short list of places in this category). I also feel good about supporting them knowing that they strive for equal access for homeless and low-income families, foster kids, etc. In short, I don't think it's too dramatic to say that Habitot really improves my family's quality of life.

 
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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

I'm very grateful to Habitot for organizing free events for special needs children. My son has autism and gets overwhelmed in crowded environments. In order to serve all children, Habitot has a recurring special needs day for just this reason so my son can enjoy being a little boy. Thank you!

 
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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

I have been taking my daughter to Habitot since she was 10 months old. She feels so at home in the space, and the real life installations have helped her learn so many things. The staff is so nurturing and remember her by name which makes her experiences there extra special. We love Habitot!

 
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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

My 13 month old loved our time at Habitot! And I loved all the educational exhibits. The veterinary clinic was a favorite since my son loves animals and he also enjoyed playing in the grocery store. I can't wait to take him back.

 
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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

Wonderful spot for my son. A safe place for freedom and exploration

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Get a bigger space

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

A lot

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2006

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

Habitot is welcoming and my daughter loves it! They change the activities on a regular basis, and my daughter is always engaged. We are so grateful to have a resource for our family.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

None

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

A lot

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

My son has been going to Habitot for three years and I have been impressed with Habitot from the beginning! My son loves to go there and I feel safe taking him to camps and other activities. My only wish is that it had the funds to expand so that it could meet the needs of more children and families in the area. The exhibits and activities are developmentally appropriate, and the staff are kind, trained, respectful and courteous! My son is five years old and he still loves going there!

I would love for Habitot to be able to expand, as I am confident they could then work with some elementary early grade students as well. Habitot is the best place for preschool children in Berkeley!

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I wish Habitot had more funding so they could add outdoor areas, and also be able to offer some programs for kinder and 1st grade students. The experiences children have at Habitot could be life changing! My son is doing a "Construction Zone" camp this week. HIs eyes lit up when he saw the hard hats, construction tape, and other thematic parts. Habitot does an amazing job with the space they have. I can only imagine what they could do with a bigger space!

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

 
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Review from Guidestar