Nature Exchange

133 When you visit Kidspace, bring along some samples of rocks, plant life, shells, or other natural specimens and trade them with Kidspace Educators at the Nature Exchange!

You can earn Nature Exchange points based on your knowledge of the object, as well as its rarity, condition and/or effort that goes into the object’s preparation. You can also earn points by completing research on a nature-related topic of your interest. You can then put your points into an online account to be used to trade for exciting natural items that we offer at the Nature Exchange or saved up for a an item you can't afford yet. 

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General Rules for Trading at the Kidspace Nature Exchange:

Only natural items are tradable. Tradable items include rocks, fossils, plants, dirt/sand, dead insects, and shells.

There are some objects Kidspace WILL NOT ACCEPT including:

  • Birds’ nests, feathers, or eggs
  • Live animals
  • parts of vertebrate animals unless it is collected without harming the animal (ex: wool or shed snake skin)
  • Endangered species (plant or animal)
  • Anything from a California cave
  • Objects of cultural or historical value
  • Anything in violation of state, national, or international laws
  • Any item altered by man. Obsidian turned into an arrow head, shells made into jewelry, carved wood or a pet rock with hair and googley eyes are some examples of man altered objects that will not be accepted.

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Research Points

The more you know about an item, the higher its trade-in point value. We encourage traders to research their items either at home or at Kidspace, using the field guides and resources available in the Nature Exchange.

Kids can also earn points by doing research projects with us. We have a variety of Profile Sheets (available for download below) as well as Challenge Booklets (only available at Kidspace) that children can complete either at home or at Kidspace to earn research points. Children can also earn points by keeping a Nature Journal. For more information about Nature Journals please download the information page below.

Downloadable Profiles and Forms to earn points:

Games and Birthdays 

Children can also earn points by playing games with us. we offer Garden Bingo at 2:15 and Nature Games at 4:15 each day for children to earn points. Children are also given 50 Birthday points if they come to the Nature Exchange on their birthday.

Limit on Trades

Trades can take up to 15 minutes per child, so please limit children to up to three separate kinds of items or trading projects per visit. Remember, the highest number of points will be awarded to traders who bring objects that are rare or of high quality, and to traders who share the most knowledge about their objects. These factors are more important than quantity.

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Live Animal Collection

Visit the Kidspace Critters in the Nature Exchange! Say hello to Sherman and Tortellini, our Eastern Box Turtle and Russian Tortoise; Baldwin, our Ball Python; Fire Bellied Toads, Arachnids, and more!

Nature Programs

Please join us for our regular programs in the Nature Exchange:

  • Nature Investigation 12:15pm every day
  • Animal Homes 3pm every last friday of the month except December

Visit the Nature Exchange or call (626) 449-9144,ext. 5219 with questions or concerns.

The Nature Exchange is open during regular Museum hours:
Tuesday through Friday 9:30am to 5pm
Saturday and Sunday 10am to 5pm

(we are open Mondays between March 16th and September 7th)

Note: Trading ends at 4:45 each day and we do not perform trades during Free Family Nights or Special Events. 


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