[PARTNERSHIP] THE IMPORTANCE OF FREE PLAY FOR KIDS.

Let's get real here. All moms look forward to the times that their kids are playing independently or - gasp- playing together nicely for a few minutes so we can get a little break.

Plus, free play is super important for them to develop critical thinking skills, encourages them to use their imagination and learn to entertain themselves (and if it prevents me from having to play Skye one more time, sign me up).

Paw Patrol | SKye

It's not you, it's me.

If my kids are playing well on their own, I take the opportunity to clean up, scroll through my phone, or start dinner. It's usually not long before one of them sniffs me out, but I'm always grateful for a few peaceful moments of quiet play time, and have really noticed my daughters put their imagination to use when someone else isn't entertaining them.

Because free play is so important to us as a family, we're super excited that the brand new Minnesota Children's Museum is opening again on June 7! The completely remodeled museum will feature 10 new exhibits, more functional spaces and more amenities, which means my kids will have a hay-day with free play! 

We were lucky enough to attend a sneak peak of one of the new exhibits called Forces at Play, which features wind-powered ball launchers, a functional sudsy car wash, water graffiti station, water light tables and more Yes,  your kids (any maybe you) will get wet at this exhibit, but thankfully the museum provides adorable little rain coats for the kids! (Moms and dads, you're on your own!)

Minnesota Children's Museum | Forces at Play

The ball launcher area was especially fun for my husband, I mean kids, and they had a blast coming up with ideas for how to shoot the balls farther or build a better structure. 

Minnesota Children's Museum | Forces at Play

This girl was so cute parading around my toddler. Her dad later told me she's dying to be a big sister! 

There is no doubt that we could spend hours in this one exhibit, which means we can have a different experience nearly every time we visit the museum. Free play, fun, and a break for mom and dad all rolled into one place? Sign me up! 

The Minnesota Children's Museum reopens on Wednesday, June 7. Find out more details and membership info at www.mcm.org.