My Own Backyard offers unstructured open-ended play experiences.  This beautiful natural environment adjacent to the museum includes a Haw river for "fishing," secret underground passage and hill for climbing, sandbox for fossil digging, log stumps for sitting and stepping, grasses, shade structures, native plants and flowers. It also includes our super fun Unity Dome Climber! Engage all your senses, explore, roll up your sleeves and get dirty!

Opportunities for Learning

Outdoor play contributes to physical, social, emotional and cognitive development. Physical movement, sharing, cooperation, and hands-on exploratory learning lives here. While exploring natural elements and using simple materials, visitors can make choices, create and build, increasing confidence and self-esteem. Exploring and appreciating nature leads to becoming stewards of the environment. 



Unity Dome Climber

The Unity Dome Climber has circular openings that children can move through safely as well as a special rope-climbing feature at center. 


Haw River

Children can "fish" or play in our scaled-down model of the Haw River. Children of all ages can watch the watermill turn, and follow the water as it flows down the stream -- right into the music area, where children can express themselves through colorful drums, xylophone and cymbals.