What 100 Looks Like

If you’ve ever been on the 3rd floor of Chicago Children’s Museum, you may have noticed a glass case between Skyline and Waterways. The case is always filled with eye catching displays and interesting collections, all surrounding a theme. This is the Eleanor C. Beidler Changing Exhibit Display, which first debuted at the museum in April 2003. Prue Beidler donated the case to us in her mother’s honor, and ever since it has been a spot in the museum for visual exploration.

Beidler Case

This month, the Beidler Case has a brand new installation called What 100 Looks Like. Visitors can view multiple collections of 100 items like: 100 rubber duckies, 100 tube socks, 100 plastic bananas and so on.

The installation was inspired in part by the book How Much is a Million? by David. M. Schwartz, as well as many schools having a 100s day, wherein students learn about the number 100 and what exactly it looks like.

By physicalizing an amount and making it visually accessible, young children are better able to understand and conceptualize large numbers. For visitors who may have low vision or are visually impaired, the pedestal outside of the case hosts 100 shoelaces that all visitors can touch and count!

What do you have 100 of? 100 pebbles? 100 pennies? 100 legos? Try counting them out at home!


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