Vogels en bijen

Warning for the faint-hearted: this post is mostly about laughing at cartoon willies.

The title means “the birds and bees” in Dutch. Why? Well, this past weekend we went to a local science and technology museum called Technopolis. We’ve been many times before and our kids always enjoy the many hands-on demonstrations, games and toys. As well as the permanent exhibits there are temporary themed exhibitions, and it just so happened that at the moment they have a new show all about puberty. It’s aimed at kids over the age of ten, so while ours played in the 4-8 year olds’ section upstairs, my wife and I took turns going downstairs to giggle at evaluate how they’d approached this sensitive topic.

The first thing that caught my eye was this glass case containing two puppet heads. You can put your hand into the back of each head to puppeteer the tongue and make them French kiss. Hours of fun…

The rest consists of a large number of displays of cartoons or puppets of various body parts, many of which are in some way interactive and most of which were operated by foot pumps. Use the foot pump to circulate spermatozoa inside the testicle!

Use the foot pump to inflate the condoms!

Use the foot pump to inflate the…er…

Use the foot pump to eject the sperm from the penis!

I can’t help but feel that some girls are going to walk away from this exhibition with some strange ideas about male “hydraulics”.

The girls’ end of things is handled a little more sensitively, with the possible exception of this chart explaining different breast sizes.

But, to be fair, on the whole it’s a pretty even-handed and down-to-earth show, with plenty of space also given over to the context of love and adult relationships. But I don’t think we’ll be showing this to our girls for a few more years yet.


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