Singapore Science Centre - Where Science and Fun are the Same Thing

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What:
Fun, hands-on learning experience at Singapore Science Centre

Where:
15 Science Centre Road
Singapore 609081

When:
Tuesday-Sunday, 10.00am - 6.00pm
(Closed on Monday, except when it's a school or public holiday.)

How:
On its own, or as part of a Singapore day tour that includes the Omnimax Theatre and Snow City.

Singapore Science Centre - Spectators watching the Tesla Coil demonstration.
Photo: The fiery sparks go off from the Tesla Coil. The spectators cover their ears and marveled. This is a must-see at the Singapore Science Centre's Atrium.


On this page: [Photo Tour] [Tips for Visitors]


I have a confession to make. As a student years ago, I was perpetually dozing off during my science lessons. I would strategically place my textbook in an upright position, hide my face behind it and take a snooze. And who can blame me as my science teacher droned on and on in the afternoon heat?

Just how different would my life have been then, if I had a stimulant as exciting as the Singapore Science Centre? On a recent trip there, I found myself marveling and touching the exhibits quite excitedly. It was as if I was trying to make up for lost time. As a few primary school kids looked in my direction, I could feel my face turning red.

And then, I looked around me... Parents, even grandparents, glowing with wide-eyed wonder as they amused themselves with their little ones at the exhibits.

Every exhibit at the Singapore Science Centre invites you to press it, touch it, slide it, run your hand over it, peek into it, and sometimes even to bang at it! At first glance, they all appear to be just games. But these are in truth very clever tricks to lure the little ones in, so that they learn a thing or two about science.

It won't do the Singapore Science Centre complete justice, but allow me to walk you through a little photo tour of the place, and then give you a few tips on what to do if you are hard pressed for time.

Singapore Science Centre Photo Tour

Climbing Einstein @ Atrium
Singapore Science Centre - A motorised doll of Albert Einstein climbing a rope.

You can't miss him. The Climbing Einstein goes up and down a rope non stop.

He looks like a sophisticated robot. But he's moved by a motor and a cable only.

Which makes him the topic for a great discussion: how did they make Einstein look like he was really climbing the rope?

   
Chimpanzee vs Human @ DNA
Singapore Science Centre - DNA comparison between human and chimpanzee.

Everything at the Singapore Science Centre is interactive.

Here at the DNA section, I compared my genes with those of a chimpanzee.

This screen says the chimp and I have 95% in common! Hmm... no wonder I sometimes scratch my scalp, round my lips and break into those silly grins. ;-)

   
The Gravitram (Gravity Tram) @ World of Energy
Singapore Science Centre - The Gravitram. A vertical set up that makes use of gravity to move the ball in it.

These 2 boys were held spell-bound by the Gravitram.

Just how does the ball go up and down, and round and round without help?

   
Human Digestive System @ The Human Body
Singapore Science Centre - a mock-up of the human digestive system.

This exhibit is part reclining Buddha and part Michaelangelo's David.

Notice those eye-pieces on the digestive tract? Peep in and you'll see a multimedia description of what goes on in there.

   
Human Brain @ The Human Body
Singapore Science Centre - a real human brain.

Yes, somebody actually donated his (or her) brain!

Look at the logo of the Singapore Science Centre. Then look at this. You'll notice the resemblance...

   
Terminator 2 Cyborg @ i-Space
Singapore Science Centre - a model of T800 the Terminator 2 cyborg.

A model of the Terminator 2 cyborg at i-Space.

First, take your kids here for inspiration. Then take them to the robotics workshop (see below).

   
Students @ Robotics Learning Centre
Singapore Science Centre - Students attending a robotics workshop.

I've forgotten how a class with excited children looked like.

Then, I trespassed into this robotics workshop for students of Chua Chu Kang Primary School.

The kids couldn't wait to get their toys moving.

Officially it says 'a minimum of 10 participants' for the workshop to start. But call them at +65 64252500 and ask whether they'll do it with fewer people. Children will love this one, for sure.

   
The Water Maze @ Waterworks
Singapore Science Centre - A boy enjoying himself at The Waterworks. An play-exhibit for learning about water.

This boy came on a school excursion. Obviously, he wasn't prepared for Waterworks.

But their teacher allowed them to get wet any way. No worries, as one of the stations is a giant dryer! It's all part of the learning - the water cycle in action.

Amazing. And probably the happiest place in all of Singapore Science Centre.

   
The Tesla Coil Demonstration @ Atrium
Singapore Science Centre - the Tesla Coil. Sparks have burst 2 balloons filled with hydrogen.

Whatever you do, don't miss this one.

It's like walking into a giant light bulb.

Watch electricity being transferred wirelessly. Or experience first hand the power of a Tesla coil - it can start a fire!

With 2 balloons secured near the coil, the show-mistress asked the audience, 'Are these filled with helium or hydrogen?'

Then the sparks from the Tesla Coil started buzzing. And the balloons burst into flames.

'Now you know why they don't fill balloons with hydrogen at fun fairs?' I overheard a gentleman telling his daughter. Isn't this cool?


Tips for Visitors

  1. The Science Centre is created for repeat visits. It's impossible to take in everything in a day. Also, they have seasonal exhibits, e.g. the recently ended Science of F1. You might want to consider an annual membership for yourself or your family, which allows for multiple visits.

  2. However, if you are holidaying in Singapore and hard pressed for time, here are a few suggestions:

    • Grab hold of a brochure at the entrance. Take note of when the shows are. Then prioritise. There are more shows during the weekends and holidays.

    • If you point a gun at my head and force me to pick the 'must-sees', these are the ones:

      • Watch both the Tesla Coil and Thunderbolt demonstrations, which are within 1 hour of each other.
        • Tesla Coil: 12.30pm & 3pm daily at the Atrium.
        • Thunderbolt: 11.30am daily. Extra show at 4pm Tuesday-Friday.
        • Volunteer to hold a fluorescent tube during the Tesla Coil demonstration (or get your children to). Watch as the unconnected fluorescent tube light up in your hand!

      • Play with your kids at the Waterworks.
        • Take a change of clothes with you. Or pretend to be surprised that there's such a water exhibit. Get wet, and then stand with them in front of the giant dryer. It's great fun.

      • Challenge your kids to the interactive games at Living with Viruses and The Human Body.
        • The names and functions of viruses, cells and such will be embedded in their minds by the time you've lost to them!

  3. Transport options:

    • Taxi from city costs about $15-25.

    • Public transport:
      • MRT to Jurong East Station, followed by buses 66 or 335.

  4. There are other interesting attractions in the Jurong area, close to the Singapore Science Centre. Combine your visit to the Science Centre with the following:

  5. Entrance Fees and Money-saving Packages:

    • Science Centre Only:
      • Adult $9, Child (3-16) $5.

    • Science Centre + Omnimax Theatre Value Package:
      • Adult $16, Child (3-12) $10.
      • Savings of $3 and $2 respectively.

    • Science Centre + Snow City Value Package:
      • Adult $16, Child (3-16) $14.

    • If visiting all 3 (Science Centre + Omnimax Theatre + Snow City):
      • Buy the 3-in-1 Package for $24 (adult), $18 (child).

    • Please note that entrance fees are correct as of 5 May 2011 and subject to change. For the latest pricing, please contact the Science Centre Infoline at +65 6425 2500.

  6. Do note that the Singapore Science Centre is closed on Monday, except when it is a school or public holiday.


Related to Singapore Science Centre

Tour Plan for Singapore Science Centre + Omnimax Theatre + Snow City

Singapore Omni-Theatre (a.k.a Omnimax Theatre)

More Singapore Tour Plans



Acknowledgement:
My thanks to the Singapore Science Centre for permission to photograph the exhibits and publish the images here.



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