Design Zone

Design Zone drawing in action interactive

Fast Facts

Summary

Design Zone highlights the relationship between mathematical thinking and the creative process in art, music, and engineering with three interactive thematic areas. 

Square Footage 
6,000 sq. ft.
Topics 
Critical Thinking
Design
Physics
Problem Solving
STEAM
Price 

$90,000/3 months, plus shipping

Highlights 

DJ Recording Studio
Video Game Design
Architect’s Studio
Action Sports Arena

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Discover that math isn’t just a subject in school—it’s a fundamental, creative tool that artists and engineers use to design and invent! Design Zone highlights the relationship between mathematical thinking and the creative process in art, music, and engineering. Visitors solve real-world challenges. Design Zone is organized into three interactive thematic areas. Each thematic area draws visitors into real-life scenes of music production, video game development, and extreme sports that directly and experientially relate mathematical concepts. 

Design Zone has a wide visitor appeal, and was developed for families, school groups, and ages 10 - 14. 

Virtual Tour

Mirror Multiplier interactive exhibit

Mirror Multiplier—Visitors explore reflectional symmetry using colorful geometric pieces and a hinged pair of mirrors.

Virtual Tour interactive exhibit

Picture Calculator—Take a selfie and manipulate the values of the pixels to transform your photo.

Drawing in Motion interactive exhibit

Drawing in Motion—Visitors become the designers as they move large sliders along number lines to manipulate a digital “pen” and draw on a monitor display.

Balancing Art interactive exhibit

Balancing Art—Discover the math behind mobiles by creating balancing art from colorful pieces.

Wall, Plaza, Tower interactive exhibit

Build a Wall, Build a Plaza, Build a Tower—Visitors choose a challenge and test their abilities to continue a pattern in three dimensions as they try building a wall, a tower, or a plaza from custom printed architectural blocks.

Marble maze interactive exhibit

Marble Maze—The goal of the game is to navigate the maze, avoid the black holes, and roll over stars to collect points. Adjust the variables and design a game that gives you the highest score.

Jump On It interactive exhibit

Jump On It—Like a classic arcade game! Visitors choose a character, select a scene, and adjust the jump power and gravity to find out how these variables affect the character’s jump height.

Drum Machine interactive exhibit

Drum Machine—Visitors pick the sounds and the number of repeats for a two-beat track, a three-beat track, and a four-beat track. It’s a challenge to get all three tracks to end on the same beat.

Music Mix interactive exhibit

Music Mix—Visitors test their  music production skills by putting together actual music samples.

Turntables interactive exhibit

Turntables—Visitors use a graph of beats per minute to help them adjust the tempos of two songs up or down until they match to make a transition as smoothly as a professional DJ.

Sound Graph interactive exhibit

Sound Graph—Visitors talk, sing, or whistle into a microphone and see the sound displayed on a colorful, real-time graph of pitch over time.

Whack-A-Phone interactive exhibit

Whack-a-Phone—By whacking tubes of different lengths, your visitors make music! The length of the tube determines the pitch.

Digital Strings interactive exhibit

Digital Strings—This electronic instrument uses the relationship between string length and pitch to create music. Visitors adjust the lengths of eight virtual strings, and then push a button to hear their musical pattern.

Slide-A-Phone interactive exhibit

Slide-a-Phone—Adjust the overall length of the tube to change the pitch of the sound. While one person beats on the drumhead, the other slides the tube to play different notes.

Laser Light Show interactive exhibit

Laser Light Show—Using a real laser, you can change the ratio of how fast one mirror moves relative to the other to create Lissajous patterns, the basis for many laser light show effects.

Roller Coaster Hills interactive exhibit

Roller Coaster Hills—The first step in roller coaster design is to understand the relationship between hill height and distance traveled. Start a ball rolling down a ramp from different heights to see how far it travels.

Design A Roller Coaster interactive exhibit

Design a Roller Coaster—In this computer graphing simulation, visitors design and test virtual roller coaster tracks and discover how hill height affects speed.

Fast Tracks interactive exhibit

Fast Tracks—This giant magnet wall lets visitors create and test their own roller coaster course.

Bike Race interactive exhibit

Bike Race—Choose from 3 bike stations, including two recumbent bicycles and a hand crank to experience a full-body bike race.

Design A Skate Park interactive exhibit

Design a Skate Park—In this computer game, visitors manipulate the slope and length of ramps to create essential skate park features.

Testing Gears interactive exhibit

Testing Gears—Feel the difference between the forces needed to perform work with three different gear combinations on two hand cranks.

Designing For Speed interactive exhibit

Designing for Speed—Visitors discover the effect of weight distribution on the speed of a rotating wheel as they test a series of wheels on a downhill course of two parallel tracks.

Availability

OMSI for refurbishment

Discovery Children's Museum

Discovery Children's Museum

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Museum of Discovery and Science

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School Resources

Educator Guide

A collection of PDFs and guides for museum staff and teachers to expand on the educational content of the exhibit, including in-classroom experiments and activities for your museum floor.

Facilitation Guide

This video-based professional development program builds on findings from the REVEAL research study and is intended to be a catalyst for staff facilitators in museums, science centers, and other informal learning environments to discuss, reflect on, and improve their educational practices.

Facilitation Guide >

Museum Resources

Exhibit Floor Plan

A sample floor plan so you can picture how Design Zone will look in your space.

Media Resources

Marketing Kit

All the logos, images, and assets you need to properly market the exhibit, promote sponsors, and get guests excited about their visit!

Questions?
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Partners

Design Zone was produced and is toured by the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry. This exhibit was made possible by a National Science Foundation (NSF) grant.