History & Mission
Inspired by the energy and diversity of our borough, Brooklyn Children’s Museum creates experiences that ignite curiosity, celebrate identity and cultivate joyful learning. See our Theory of Change.
Founded in 1899 as the world’s first children’s museum, Brooklyn Children’s Museum (BCM) is New York City’s largest cultural institution designed especially for families. Proudly based in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, BCM serves 300,000 children and caregivers annually with exhibits and programs grounded in visual arts, music and performance, natural science, and world cultures. Learn more about our exhibits here and check our calendar for information on upcoming events at the Museum. Have questions about your visit? Check our FAQ page.
Our Program Philosophy
Brooklyn Children’s Museum exhibits and programs are rooted in the following:
- Interdisciplinary & inquiry-based learning grounded in our collection and encouraging children to explore their world from multiple perspectives.
- Sensory learning through hands-on, physical experiences.
- Appreciation of culture and community, with a focus on socio-emotional learning and interpersonal relationships.
- Stimulating parent-child dialogue and providing family resources.
- Empowering children to think of themselves as agents of community change and inspire responsible and civic engagement.
Our Commitment to Community
In all of its work and business practice, BCM commits to its Brooklyn community by:
- Serving all families regardless of ability to pay.
- Building community for parents and children.
- Reaching beyond our walls into schools and other neighborhoods.
- Using local vendors and supporting small business.
- Employing Brooklynites and supporting their families by paying 100% of health premiums for staff, their spouses and dependents.
- Providing space and sharing resources with other Brooklyn-based CBOs.
Thank you to our sponsors
Brooklyn Children’s Museum’s programs are made possible in part by private funding from foundations, corporations, and individuals, as well as public funds from: New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the New York City Council; the Institute of Museum and Library Services; the New York City Department of Youth and Community Development; the National Endowment for the Arts; the National Endowment for the Humanities; and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Kathy Hochul and the New York State Legislature. Special thanks to New York City Council Members Crystal Hudson; Chi Ossé; and Farah N. Louis; New York State Assembly Members Brian Cunningham, Robert C. Carroll, Phara Souffrant-Forrest, Jo Anne Simon, Latrice Walker, and Stefani Zinerman; and New York State Senators Zellnor Myrie and Andrew Gounardes.
Special thanks to our corporate and foundation sponsors: The Achelis & Bodman Foundation, Amazon, American Express, Armand Corporation, The Milton and Sally Avery Arts Foundation, Bloomberg Philanthropies, The Bulova Stetson Fund, The Carson Family Charitable Trust, CBRE, Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton, Con Edison, Davis Polk & Wardwell, Debevoise and Plimpton, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., Donnelly Mechanical, Peggi Einhorn Endowment for Teen Programs, FAR Fund, Goldman Sachs & Co., Greater Hudson Heritage Network, The Hearst Foundations, The Holborn Foundation, The Hyde and Watson Foundation, The Charles E. Inniss Fund, Investors Foundation, The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Langan, The Lemberg Foundation, Lilly Endowment, The Pierre and Tana Matisse Foundation, Morgan Stanley, National Grid, NCheng, Nissan Foundation, Moses L. Parshelsky Foundation, Pfizer, Inc., Pinkerton Foundation, The Charles H. Revson Foundation, Silverstein Properties, Inc., Dr. Robert C. and Tina Sohn Foundation, Stop & Stor, Studio Institute, Sullivan and Cromwell, Tiger Baron Foundation, The Joe and Clara Tsai Foundation Social Justice Fund, Two Trees, Urban Atelier Group, and Warner Bros. Discovery.