I had such a blast giving the 1000+ ocean explorers (and their dedicated parents) that attended The 8th Annual Family Night at the Museum a "taste of the sea" (literally) with my fellow biology grad students!
The event took place in Smith Hall, better known as the Alabama Museum of Natural History. Graduate students from across disciplines set up rooms dedicated to creating the ultimate ocean experience for all the children that attended (and if the kids were secretly learning some science along the way, well we weren't going to tell them). Our biology room had a jumping fish game, a match the sea creature with their depth, a microscope demo of algae with a seaweed snack for after, a squid ink pen to write their names in squid ink, and a live sea urchin to hold.
I can't explain the how nostalgic I felt when I saw the awe and curiosity burning in the children's eyes after looking through a microscope for the first time. I imagine that's what my face would've looked like my first time too. I'm also so impressed at the number of children who tried the seaweed. What champs! Of course, the goldfish provided to help them wash it down probably had something to do with it. With all the inquisitive questions I was asked tonight, I'm certain I met quite a few future scientists.