History Class at the Chicago History Museum

Looking for a fun and interactive way to teach your little ones about our amazing city? Then look no further than The Chicago History Museum.


Spend an hour or two at the museum, learning about the sights, smells, culture, and important events that make Chicago the unique city that it is. My boys loved spending time in the kid’s area, especially comparing traditional thin crust and Chicago’s finest stuffed pizza, as well as building their own Chicago style hot dogs.

There are lots of interactive displays that appeal to all of your senses, from smelling the Chicago stockyards to jumping on light up dots in order to find their hidden sounds. It was hard to pull my boys away from the faux Comiskey stadium, which was disappointing to my husband and I, since we are North Siders and will always cheer for the Cubs, no matter how bad they are.


Upstairs there are a ton of different displays celebrating the state of Illinois, ranging from an exhibit highlighting the presidency of Abraham Lincoln to artwork from distinguished artists, including Frank Lloyd Wright.


My train loving boys enjoyed checking out the steam engine train, as well as the authentic “L” train car…we probably walked through it at least 50 times.


Even though we tried to get our boys to be interested in other sections of the museum, such as the area about Chicago Blues music and the World’s Fair, they weren’t very interested since much of the exhibits were very “reading heavy.”


Luckily when we visited, it was the second Saturday of the month, which is Family Day at the Chicago History Museum. There were tons of different Chicago themed books available to read, as well as a craft and toy station. We spent a ton of time playing with the Tinker Toys (a Chicago classic), as well as playing with the Chicago skyscraper puzzle.


For the entire month of February, the weekday museum admission is free for everyone, so be sure to take advantage and hide from Mother Nature’s brutal wind.  Thursdays are free days throughout the year.


Current Events

The Chicago History Museum is holding its 56th annual Fourth of July Celebration from 10am to 12 pm on July 4th.  Families can enjoy music, performances, face painting, a children’s costume contest, children’s parade and more…followed by FREE ADMISSION to the museum.

Be sure to search “museums” into the search box to learn more insider’s tips about Chicago’s amazing museums.


Enjoy learning about Sweet Home Chicago!

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    • amandasimkin says

      There were also tons of couples on a museum date–a sweet and unique idea for Valentine’s Day, if you ask me!

  1. Jamie says

    Oh so much fun! I love when museums make it an enjoyable experience for the whole family. My son would have loved the train stuff too 🙂 I lived in Rockford for 3 years but never made it to the history museum. Too bad, it looks amazing!

  2. Breanna says

    My son would absolutely LOVE this place! Hot dogs are his favorite food, and trains are one of his favorite things! What a fun outing – it looks like your family had a blast! I wish I didn’t live in such a small town. We have to drive hours in order to find anything like this!

  3. rochkirstin says

    I think an hour or two spent at the museum for sure will bring precious memories and a great learning experience for kids. In normal occasions, how much is the entrance fee per person? It’s good that they offer free admission this month so more people will be encouraged to visit and try out the facilities.

    • amandasimkin says

      It is $14 for adults, which I think is a little steep. Thankfully it is one of the “off the radar” museums so it doesn’t get crowded on free days.

  4. Nancy says

    I still haven’t made it out to Chicago yet! So many of my family and friends tend to go quite frequently, and have their picture taken with that giant silver bean (is it called a bean? It looks like one lol).

    Regardless if I had youngin’s or not, I’d love to check out that museum while I was at it. Fun for all ages I spose hey?

    • amandasimkin says

      Yes, we call it “The Bean” but I think the name of it is actually Cloud Gate. It is pretty cool to interact with it by touching it, looking inside its’ curves….and watching them wipe away all of the finger prints twice a day. Lots of museums to choose from for your inaugural visit!

    • amandasimkin says

      You have a ton to choose from. Be sure to get a City Pass…such a better deal since the museums can be pricey!

  5. tammileetips says

    I love visiting new museums when we travel! This looks like a fun one for all ages. Looks like everyone had a blast exploring, and I love the hands on exhibits that they have for the kids!

  6. CourtneyLynne says

    hot dogs & trains!?! What kiddo would love that 😉 but honestly though… This museum looks pretty awesome. I was a history major in school so I love all museums and educational stuff…. Im a giant nerd under all this blonde hair 😉

  7. Natasha says

    I love the museums of my hometown Don’t forget the DuSable Museum and the Hispanic American culture Museum those two are really fun to visit for children also. They have art classes and history classes also. Oh and the Polish American Museum and the Chicago History museum. I’m a Chicago native and I think I have visited every museum there and art studio.

    Chicago’s neighborhoods are so rich with culture that I just love to take walks around the neighborhoods to find new places for my kids to visit. Our museums are the best to me, they have so much and they cater to our children with playful learning.

    • amandasimkin says

      I love those “off the radar” museums….we are visiting the Swedish American museum next.

      Can’t wait until Spring so we can explore all of the little neighborhoods, especially where I used to teach since it is so different from where we currently live.

  8. Natalie says

    History museums are the coolest. I’ve never been to Chicago, so I’ve haven’t been to this one, which one day, i want to travel to as many as I could. My dad use to always take us to museums like this and we hated it, but not until we grew up, I really enjoy going to them and I plan on taking my kids too.

  9. Debbie Harrell says

    We lived in Chicago many years ago now, but I adored the history, well I like history in general. I found Chicago has so much to explore and learn about, and we did dig into the history of things, such as the deep dish pizza and the “L” train, it is really fun and interesting. Each city and state has such fascinating stories and traditions that are great to learn and share with our children.

    • amandasimkin says

      I used to teach a Chicago Literature course and there is always something fun and new to learn about Chicago. Love learning about places and their history. Clearly, I am a teaching nerd. 🙂

  10. Amanda @ Adorkablii says

    OMG, this place looks like it is a blast. I think Jaiden would totally love it! We have a touch Museum near us That I need to take Jaiden too because I really believe her would love it! It looks like your little ones had a blast!! Thank you for sharing!

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