Wednesday, October 27, 2021

WonderWorks Pigeon Forge introduces new STEM exhibit explaining Earth’s spheres

Beginning on March 11, 2021, visitors to WonderWorks Pigeon Forge will be able to view a new exhibit focused on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) which will put the spotlight on Earth’s layers, or spheres. 

“This is a great new exhibit that helps us learn more about this place we call home,” explains Ed Shaffer, general manager for WonderWorks in Pigeon Forge. “We loved that the public helped us to create the name of the new exhibit.”

The exhibit will focus on the four layers, or spheres, that the Earth has. These include the lithosphere (or geosphere), hydrosphere, biosphere and atmosphere. Those who visit the exhibit can can read about the spheres, see images and watch a 3D hologram high-definition video that does not require any special glasses. The video provides a visual explanation of the layers and how they interact, to enhance the experience.

STEM education, according to the National Inventors Hall of Fame, focuses on teaching children real-world applications that help develop a variety of skill sets. Some of the skills children gain through STEM education include technology literacy, problem solving, creativity, curiosity, critical thinking and being innovative. Finding ways to introduce them to STEM topics in a fun way can help to get them more interested.

“Our mission is to help make learning fun for everyone,” added Shaffer. “With this exhibit we are helping people learn some STEM topics in a fun and memorable atmosphere. It’s very exciting!”

To choose the name for the new poll, WonderWorks held a poll asking people to choose from three names. Employees and social media users weighed in, with the following being the outcome of the exhibit name poll: Sphere We Go! is the official new name of the exhibit.

A. Sphere We Go! – 51% of the vote 

B. Get Outta Sphere! – 38%

C. Sphere Not These Earthly Layers! – 11% 

While this was the inaugural year for the art contest, it will be held annually, with submissions being accepted each fall. In addition to the SM-Art Art Contest, WonderWorks Pigeon Forge offers homeschool days, virtual learning labs, and more. WonderWorks also offers many STEM-related exhibits, activities and demonstrations. For more information, visit the site at: https://www.wonderworksonline.com/pigeon-forge.

WonderWorks has adopted COVID-19 safety protocols, including reduced hours, enhanced cleaning efforts, social distancing measures, employee health screenings and employee personal protective equipment (PPE). Guests are encouraged to review all safety rules prior to their visit on the web page devoted to COVID-19:  https://www.wonderworksonline.com/pigeon-forge/covid-19.

WonderWorks in Pigeon Forge offers 35,000 square feet of “edu-tainment” opportunities, billing itself as an amusement park for the mind. It offers over 100 hands-on exhibits covering natural disasters and space discovery, an imagination lab, a physical challenge zone, a far out art gallery and a light and sound zone. WonderWorks is open daily from 10:30 a.m. until 6:30 p.m. For more information, visit:  https://www.wonderworksonline.com/pigeon-forge/.

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