Museums and zoos are closed to visitors but open to creative ways to entertain you and your kids while you’re all at home.

By Ginger Crichton
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You’re probably in your first full week of staying at home to help control the spread of coronavirus. Some Midwest attractions are stepping up to bring both fun and educational content to your family via social media, and others are likely to follow.

The Cincinnati Zoo—known already for their daily dose of animal cuteness on Instagram — now has Home Safaris at 2 p.m. CDT each weekday via Facebook Live. Each “will highlight one of our amazing animals and include an activity you can do from home,” the zoo says. And “if you can’t watch the videos live, they will still appear on Facebook as well as our YouTube channel and our website.”

If that’s not enough animal adorableness for you, head to the Shedd Aquarium’s Facebook or Instagram pages, where you can watch penguins take field trips (really!) around the closed aquarium and see other enrichment activities. “This is my new favorite thing ever!” one Instagrammer commented.

The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis offers at-home science experiments and virtual exhibit tours,  Facebook Live content with museum experts and activity suggestions from the coaches of the Riley Children’s Health Sports Legends Experience.

The Cincinnati Museum Center says it's “working on online exhibits, videos and activities that parents can use to keep their kids’ minds and bodies active.”

Nationally, The Kennedy Center has launched Lunch Doodles with #MoWillems. “Join our Education Artist-in-Residence at Home as Mo invites you into the @mo.illemsstudio every weekday at 1 p.m. Eastern Time to draw, doodle and explore new ways of writing.”

Check out the websites and social media of your favorite local attractions and see what they might be planning. And be sure to support them with a visit once it’s safe to be out and about again!