With the creation of The Walton Optimal Neurological Discovery Education and Research (W.O.N.D.E.R) Center at the Arizona Science Center (ASC), learning about neuroscience, positive psychology, mindfulness, brain anatomy, and physiology is permanently accessible to children and adults. This exhibit explores the space between the possible and impossible, encouraging us to focus on the human mind as a vital part of our wellbeing and potential.
Each year, the W.O.N.D.E.R Center reaches approximately half a million children and adults with interactive mind and brain exploration experiences, in service of advancing knowledge and decision-making to positively impact the world around us. In partnership with the Rob and Melani Walton Sustainability Solutions Service and California Academy of Sciences, the Rob and Melani Walton Sustainability in Science Museums Program reaches 200 museums in all 50 states and 32 countries. ASC’s other programming includes STEM curriculum, professional science and math teacher development, and Create U, an after-school enrichment program where students are able to unlock their creativity and sense of wonder in a hands-on and imaginative environment.
The Center also worked with the Hawn Foundation on their MindUP school-based program to expand it into a three-part “Brain Buzz” program. The interactive exhibit at ASC is designed to help children better understand what is happening in their brain when they are experiencing different emotions and how to adjust in order to learn better, reduce stress, and become happier through improved mindfulness.
Daily demonstrations at the W.O.N.D.E.R Center’s Genius Theater utilize two fully-functioning Tesla coils, much to the delight of visiting school groups and families. The exhibit makes complex concepts tangible, demonstrating the connection between electric currents and electricity in our brains and bringing science to life through the interactive presentations and 3D models of neural connections.
Past programming in partnership with Barrow Neurological Institute included summer camp programming where young campers have the opportunity to learn from the scientists and neurosurgeons at Barrow while also conducting hands-on lab work.
Providing knowledge that is accessible to everyone gives power to young people, enabling generations to improve life by making choices that sustain people and the world around us.
We invite you to visit the inspiring work of the Arizona Science Center HERE.