Explore with your Family
ANIMAL INSIDE OUT, a BODY WORLDS Production offers a unique opportunity to learn about the great diversity that exists in the animal kingdom through an exploration of animal anatomy.
ANIMAL INSIDE OUT provides a unique opportunity to view the complexity of animals of all sizes. A process known as Plastination allows the anatomical specimens to be fixed into lifelike poses that illustrate how animals’ bodies are structured and how they function in their natural environments. The process involves extracting all bodily fluids and fat from specimens and replacing them through vacuum-forced impregnation with reactive resins and elastomers. The specimens are then cured with light, heat or certain gasses, which gives the specimens rigidity and permanence.
Important information to know
- No animals were harmed or killed for this exhibit. All of the animals you will see in ANIMAL INSIDE OUT were donated to the Institute for Plastination by zoos, aquariums, universities, and other facilities where the animals died from natural causes. By being a part of this exhibit, they are able to continue to educate people about the diversity of wildlife, and the importance of wildlife conservation, through an exploration of their anatomy. The humans you see represented in ANIMAL INSIDE OUT are voluntary body donors who agreed that, upon their death, their bodies could be used for educational purposes.
- These whole body specimens reveal bones, muscles, tendons, nerves, blood vessels, and organs. There are several cases and examples that explore comparative anatomy, including human anatomy.
- All specimens are accompanied by a written description, and there are gallery presenters located in the exhibit to answer questions and help you further explore the concepts presented in this exhibit. Look for gallery presenters in Perot Museum staff shirts.
- This exhibit is open to guests of all ages, and is appropriate for families with children of all ages. A few exhibit panels briefly discuss animal reproduction. To ensure an enriching experience for all, children under the age of 13 must be accompanied by a responsible adult, parent, guardian or school chaperone.
ANIMAL INSIDE OUT explores the diversity of the animal kingdom through an exploration of major body systems: nervous, respiratory, cardiovascular, digestive, and reproductive. You and your family will see whole animal plastinates as well as individual organs and skeletons in various poses. These demonstrate how these systems work together, as well as the diversity of adaptations to these systems between different animals and taxonomic groups.
As you explore ANIMAL INSIDE OUT
- Relate elements of the exhibition to experiences you and your child have had. Have you recently been to the zoo? What animals did you see there that are represented here? Did your child have questions about those animals?
- Relate elements of the exhibition to our bodies. For example, have your child make a fist, which is similar to the size of your child’s heart. Compare that to the hearts in the exhibition.
- Discuss wildlife conservation with your child; instead of focusing on negative conservation stories, discuss ways that you can help wildlife. For example, you could put out a bird feeder during migration season, or start a recycling initiative in your neighborhood.
- Answer your children’s questions honestly. It’s okay not to know all of the answers; our trained gallery staff are available to help you find answers to questions, and to help you and your children engage with the exhibit through asking them questions about what they see and think.
- Be sensitive to your own and your children’s reactions. Be open to what your children think about the exhibition, and understand that people come away from ANIMAL INSIDE OUT with many different interpretations. Ask your children what they thought about the exhibition, and share your thoughts with them.
Questions to get you started
- What parts of the exhibit do you like?
- Which animals have we seen before? Have your thoughts about those animals changed after seeing them in this exhibit?
- How are you the same as these animals? How are you different?
- What is something we can do to help animals?
Enhance your ANIMAL INSIDE OUT learning experience by visiting these halls at the Perot Museum
- Moody Family Children’s Museum (for ages 5 and under) – find our live animals in the Great Trinity Forest exhibit! Lower Level
- Sports Hall – Learn about your body in motion; use the scanner to look at examples of various types of scans. Lower Level
- Discovering Life – Learn about animals, adaptations, habitats and biodiversity. Level 2
- Being Human Hall – Further your exploration of the human body and discover what makes us human; this exhibit includes Plastinated slices of real human bodies from the Institution for Plastination. Level 2
- T. Boone Pickens Life then and Now Hall – Discover dinosaurs and other prehistoric life, and learn how paleontologists look at modern day animal physiology and behavior to help them better understand their prehistoric ancestors. Level 4
- Rose Hall of Birds – Discover the world of bird biology, try your hand at simulated flight, and using the knowledge gained in the exhibit to build your own bird. Level 4M