Toys: The Inside Story



Background Information

Peek inside some common toys while exploring the basics of pulleys, cams, gears, linkages, and circuits. If your parents never let you break open your Etch A Sketch® to find out how it works, or if you’ve been wondering how to stop your toddler’s push toy from making such an infernal racket, you’ll love Toys: The Inside Story.

Toys: The Inside Story includes 12 different hands-on stations illustrating the simple mechanisms commonly found in toys, and lets visitors create their own toy-like combinations of gears, pulleys, linkages, cams, and circuits.

"What's Inside Jack-in-the-Box?" gives visitors a close-up view of the cam combination that frees our hero "Jack," while elsewhere we unmask the amazing collection of switches, cams, and motors that make Elmo® dance and Mr. Machine® run.

Many of the exhibits are free-form and open-ended: “Gears at Play” illustrates the effects of gear ratios as visitors figure out how to spin ballerinas and a carousel, while the “Jeepers Peepers” challenge at the pulley table may take a little experimentation to solve.