As America's ninth-largest city, Dallas has more than enough activity options for almost any 2-year-old. While the saying "everything's bigger in Texas" certainly applies to Dallas (the city's Big Tex statue is the tallest cowboy in the state and the Galleria Dallas puts up the nation's largest Christmas tree each season), you can find plenty of pint-sized activities for the smaller set.
Your 2-year-old isn't too young to spend the day at the library. Sure, toddlers are super-active, highly energetic little beings, but a morning (or afternoon) of quiet time at the Dallas Public Library (dallaslibrary2.org) is the perfect way to get your young learner off to a literate start. If your toddler just can't keep still for a simple story time, try one of the library's classes that are specifically designed for the preschooler set. Tales and Tunes for Tots and the bookie Woogie Books programs are interactive story times that also include music and movement activities. If you are looking for a more playful time out, the library system's Come Play With Me program provides kids who are under age 3 with a variety of educational toys to use in the library setting.
Nature and Science
Get your little explorer's brain going at the Perot Museum of Nature and Science (natureandscience.org). Formerly the Dallas Museum of Natural History, The Science Place and the Dallas Children's Museum, as of late 2012 these three Texas institutions opened into one mega-museum. Your 2-year-old will delight in one of the museum's hands-on nature and science early childhood programs such as Scribbles and Dribbles, Action Zoo, Little Leonardos and Gallery Explorers.
The Dallas Zoo
If your 2-year-old just can't seem to stop talking about how much she loves the neighbor's cat, maybe it's time for a trip to the zoo. The Dallas Zoo is home to animals ranging from earth-shaking elephants to slithering snakes. Toddlers from 15 months through 2 years can take in a class such as Cub Club. This toddler workshop is an hour-long activity that includes a zoo tour, hands-on projects and an animal meet and greet (registration required).
Your mini-Monet can enjoy a day out at the Dallas Museum of Art (dallasmuseumofart.org). Not only can you take your 2-year-old around the museum's world-class gallery spaces, but you might also want to try out a pint-size class. If you are weekend art warrior, try out the museum's family programs such as Studio Creations (Saturday and Sunday afternoon art-making activities) or Sketching in the Galleries for Kids. Weekday visitors can sign up for the museum's Toddler Art class, which features a teacher-led look at the artwork.
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