How People Make Things
Exhibit Open: January 20 – May 5, 2024
Every object in our world has a story of how it is made. How People Make Things, a new exhibit opening at the Children’s Museum of Memphis on January 20, tells that story by linking familiar childhood objects to a process of manufacturing that combines people, ideas and technology.
How People Make Things, inspired by the factory tour segments from the Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood television series, offers hands-on activities using real factory tools and machines to create objects with four manufacturing processes – molding, cutting, deforming and assembly. Many common manufactured products help tell the story of how people, ideas and technology transform raw materials into finished products.
How People Make Things offers hands-on activities using real factory tools and machines to create objects using four manufacturing processes – molding, cutting, deforming, and assembly. Visitors can use a die cutter to make a box and a horse, cut wax using different sculpting tools, deform a wire by taking a straight wire into a spring shape by winding it around the metal shaft, mold spoons using real melted wax, assemble a trolley and test your skills on the testing track.
“This exhibit brings children close to the nuts and bolts of how products are manufactured, which is very easy to feel removed from these days,” says Dr. Stewart Burgess, Chief Executive Officer of the Children’s Museum of Memphis.
“Through his factory tours, Fred Rogers took complex issues and made them simple and direct so children could understand them and relate them to their own lives. He made manufacturing fascinating and inspirational, and we continue that tradition with How People Make Things.”
The factory tour videos from the Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood television series featured in the exhibit depict the making of crayons, carousel horses, balls, stop lights, quarters, shoes, toy cars and toy wagons.