Chicago's museums have endless ways to entertain and educate your kids, even when you don't. For ideas on where to take your family in April, check out these special museum exhibits:
"Forts" at the Chicago Children's Museum: You know how it's so fun watching your kids turn their imaginary forts into reality but not so fun cleaning up the multitude of household products -- chairs, sheets, brooms, tables -- that they've used for their fort-making adventure afterwards? You won't have to at the Chicago Children's Museum's special exhibit, "Forts." The museum, which will host the exhibit through September 5, promises an "endless supply" of sheets, stools, brooms and even doors and headboards for your kids to build their castles, houses and futuristic fortifications. 700 E. Grand Ave; 312-527-1000
"Pattern Wizardry" at Kohl Children's Museum of Greater Chicago: Your kids might feel thrills when Harry Potter and Hermione say "expecto patronum" or "expelliarmus," but they won't need wands for the "Pattern Wizardry" special exhibit at the Kohl Children's Museum of Greater Chicago. Running through May 9, Pattern Wizardry teaches kids to find patterns in geometry by wandering among hexagons of honeycombs, inspecting the symmetry in butterfly wings and creating rhythmic sound with multicolored xylophone blocks. 2100 Patriot Blvd., Glenview; 847-832-6600
"BODY WORLDS & the Cycle of Life" at the Museum of Science and Industry and "Our Body: The Universe Within" at the International Museum of Surgical Science: See what the inside of a human body looks like when it's throwing a javelin or dancing ballet. More than 200 actual human bodies called plastinates (because of the process in which they were preserved) are on display at the Museum of Science and Industry through Sept. 5 in the special exhibit, "BODY WORLDS & the Cycle of Life." The exhibit allows visitors to inspect the interior of human bodies at every stage, from youth to old age. To see another set of preserved human bodies, go to the International Museum of Surgical Science for "Our Body: The Universe Within." This exhibit, which runs through June 30, features more than 200 whole-body and organ specimens alongside artifacts from the museum's permanent collection, like surgical tools from ancient Peru and cutting-edge orthopedic implants that fuse with patients' bones.
Museum of Science and Industry: 57th Street and Lake Shore Drive; 773-684-1414
International Museum of Surgical Science: 1524 N. Lake Shore Drive; 312-642-6502