Chocolate: The Exhibit, a Tasty Educational Experience for All

9 Flares Twitter 0 Facebook 3 Google+ 2 Pin It Share 3 StumbleUpon 1 LinkedIn 0 9 Flares ×
We were invited to get a peek at the brand new Chocolate Exhibit. Here is our family’s experience with the new exhibit.
The Chocolate Exhibit, at the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia, is a great way to help kids learn about the process of chocolate – where it comes from, its history, and how it’s made. The newest exhibit is done so well. The exhibit designers hit on a great mix of displays with some being readable signs with facts, such as bugs that are an important part of the ecosystem where chocolate grows, and interactive displays where children can explore things about chocolate. History and science are all wrapped into one manageable sensory display.
Chocolate the Exhibition Academy of Natural Sciences
When you hear “cocoa bean” do you think of a tiny coffee bean? Cocoa beans are a bit bigger than coffee beans and come from a pod that is around 9 inches long. Nestled in a white pulp, the work has only just begun when they are harvested from the trees in South America and now, West Africa. At the Academy of Natural Science Museum’s Chocolate Exhibit you will learn what a cacao tree looks like, how chocolate is harvested, and embark on the long journey it takes from tree to your favorite chocolate products.
Cacao Pod
Most kids already learn in school that chocolate was “discovered” and made popular by ancient Aztecs who believed it was a gift from one of their gods. This adventure takes them a step farther in an indepth learning experience. They will learn how Cacao beans became a preferred form of payment, and how when the rich cocoa drink was prepared there were special ceremonial vessels used and one wore their best attire. As time went by and trade started progressing throughout the world, European aristocracy used fine china to serve hot cocoa to their guests. By the 20th century chocolate became a staple in many households around the world.
Chocolate Drinking Ceremony
As we reach the end of our tour we get to see how a chocolate bar is made, learn about the pitfalls of the chocolate industry ( child labor and slavery), and see where it’s coming in at on NYSE (New York Stock Exchange). Finally we end at a chocolate gift store, filled with fair trade specialty chocolate products. With hot cocoa mixes, chocolate bars, and cookies, there is something to tantalize everyone’s senses.
Chocolate Exhibition Display Academy of Natural Sciences

We highly recommend you visit the Academy of Natural Sciences and Chocolate: The Exhibit while it is on display.

The Chocolate Exhibit runs October 11, 2014 – January 24, 2015.

Exhibit cost is $5 per person for non-members and $3 per person for members.

Chocolate StoreChocolate Study Guide

  • Where chocolate comes from
  • How chocolate became a world product
  • Ancient Mayan and Aztec influence on chocolate as we know it
  • How chocolate bars are made
  • Studies of the countries chocolate is grown in
  • Human rights, child labor, and fair trade discussions
9 Flares Twitter 0 Facebook 3 Google+ 2 Pin It Share 3 StumbleUpon 1 LinkedIn 0 9 Flares ×


  1. says

    This looks like so much fun!
    A couple of summers ago my oldest and I did a Chocolate tasting and we also got a history lesson on chocolate. I had no idea how much was involved from simple bean to yummy treat.

  2. says

    As a homescchool mom, I totally plan to take my kids to things like this. Chocolate is one of my favorites so I would really enjoy going to something like this as well.

  3. says

    This looks like it is a fun exhibit that can take your love of chocolate and turn it into a fuller understanding of it. We’ll have to try to get to see it soon.

  4. says

    We need to get to this. Maybe in February. I saw a chocolate demonstration years ago at Science Week and it was awesome. I still think about much of what I was taught. I would love for my kids to see it too!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *