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SMALL WORLDS: A Miniature Universe in Tokyo Educating on the SDGs

Tokyo Updates introduces this miniature museum that entertains while kids and classes of all ages have fun learning about the environment and SDGs.



The miniatures are crafted one by one by professionals with an astonishing level of intricacy. Depicted here is the “Global Village” area. (© SMALL WORLDS)

SMALL WORLDS, a miniature museum in a multi-themed format, is located in the Tokyo district of Ariake. It is garnering attention for its educational programs, tailored to school groups, that teach about the SDGs, technology, and international understanding.

Programs Joined by 3,000 Students Every Month

SMALL WORLDS is a Tokyo establishment, but it is one of the world's largest indoor miniature theme parks. Featuring a tiny version of the world, 1/80 the size of our own, it spans 8,000 square meters. The museum is split into 8 different areas, including the "Global Village," inspired by Industrial Revolution-era Europe and Asia with dragons and other fantasy elements scattered across the cityscapes, Evangelion-themed areas and the "Space Center," where visitors can watch a shuttle launch up close.

"Exploring the SDGs" is the most popular theme, and includes 3 programs: a quiz rally, a poster-making session, and an educational card game. Depicted here are students hunting for clues as part of the quiz rally. (© SMALL WORLDS)

Inquiry-Based Fun and Learning

SMALL WORLDS was designed around the concept of inquiry-based learning and offers educational programs that have been well received by school groups. The museum has seen about 3,000 students come for these programs every month since 2022, be it on a field trip or as part of a larger excursion.

The programs cover a wide range of topics, including "Exploring the SDGs," "Career Exploration," "Manufacturing," "Programming," "Cutting-Edge Technology," and more. In addition, SMALL WORLDS offers combinations of different programs as well as custom content tailored to each school based on grade level, academic background, and field of specialty. English-speaking staff are also on hand, and most of the programs are available in English.

Continue reading the full story on Tokyo Updates and find up-to-date information on hours, ticket fees and access on the SMALL WORLDS website.

Tokyo Updates is an online magazine of the Tokyo Metropolitan Government. It features the latest fresh perspectives on Tokyo developments, with contributions from prominent figures, journalists, and independent writers of diverse nationalities. Focusing on Tokyo life, it includes features on leading SDGs initiatives and urban challenges.


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