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Hear, feel and touch sound: new exhibit at Joseph Brant Museum examines one of the five senses

The traveling exhibition “Sound, Just Sound” recently opened at Burlington’s Joseph Brant Museum. The exhibition is an interactive, educational event, touching on every facet of the auditory sense.

Visitors can find out what the best material for dampening sound is, guess the invention dates of various recorded music formats and learn about how to take proper care of their ears by not exposing them to overly loud sounds and environments.

The exhibit is in a large room with pillars, each containing a different activity relating to a different aspect of sound.

A diagram of the inside of the human ear.
Diagrams of ears were set up at certain stations throughout the room to demonstrate how humans perceive and process sound.

Museum curator Jessica Benjak-Waterous said the exhibit has more to it than just sound.

“I think it’s great because it touches on all of the senses, really,” Benjak-Waterous said. “Because there are parts of the exhibit that focus not on just hearing sound, but also seeing sound as well. And there’s a lot of community connections within the exhibit of people with hearing issues how to better that and also just learning how different cultures say different things and how different sounds are.”

Many school groups attend the exhibit to teach kids about the fundamentals of sound.

An interactive station where you can press buttons to hear different animal sounds.
Some stations are geared towards kids, like this one where visitors can make their own symphony of animal sounds.

“There’s lots of activities for parents and children to connect with and also with education programming as well,” Benjak-Waterous said. “We are booking classes to come and see this exhibit just so kids are learning outside of the classroom environment and get to do all these fun experiments and activities.”

The next exhibit called “Worlds of the Night” comes to the museum in April 2024. The event focuses on nightly creatures and animals that are native to Canada.

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