Science Programs

Our interactive science programs are designed to promote student investigation and critical thinking. Led by a museum educator, programs include age-appropriate activities and encourage student participation. All museum programs meet learning standards outlined in North Carolina’s Standard Course of Study.

Don't see a program that meets your needs? We are happy to design a special program for you. Many of our programs can be adapted to meet high school standards, fulfilling many competency goals in STEM subjects.

 

Pre-K Science Programs

Our preschool programs are designed to introduce children to various scientific topics and ideas through hands-on learning. Programs are 30 – 45 minutes long.

Animal Encounters

Students see live animals up close as we talk about adaptation, classification, food, and habitats. Students have the opportunity to touch one of the animals at the end of the program.

$9 per person for a Field Trip
$140 for a SHOW
Serves up to 30 people

Bugs, Bugs, Bugs

Learn what differentiates insects from other animals as we look at how they eat, crawl, fly, and more!

$9 per person for a Field Trip
$140 for a SHOW
Serves up to 30 people

Diary of a Worm

Get ready to squirm into the lives of worms as we use storytime to teach about these small creatures and why we need them!

$9 per person for a Field Trip
$140 for a SHOW
Serves up to 30 people

Dynamic Dinosaurs

Step back in time to learn about these amazing prehistoric creatures! Students learn about paleontology as they explore what fossils can tell us about dinosaurs. We look closely at features that helped dinosaurs survive during the Mesozoic Era. Students make a dinosaur rubbing to take home.

$9 per person for a Field Trip
$140 for a SHOW
Serves up to 30 people

Pop, Fizz, Wow!

This exciting program explores the world of chemical reactions.  We make elephant toothpaste, fill balloons with various gases to compare their weights, and make carbon dioxide!

$9 per person for a Field Trip
$200 for a SHOW
Serves up to 100 people

 

School Age Science Classes (K-8)

Our science programs are designed to encourage your students to think like scientists as they hypothesize and experiment. We offer programs for students ranging from kindergarten to 8thgrade following state standards. These cover a wide range of scientific topics and ideas. Programs range from 45-60 minutes long.

 

Biology & Life Science Classes

Animal Encounters

Students see live animals up close as we talk about adaptation, classification, food, and habitats. Students have the opportunity to touch an animal pelt and one of the animals at the end of the program. Serves up to 100 *K.L.1; 1.L.1.1; 1.L.1.2; 1.L.2.2; 2.L.1.1; 2.L.2.1; 2.L.2.2; 3.L.1.2; 4.L.1.2; 4.L.1.4; 5.L.2.2; 6.L.2.1

$9 per person for a Field Trip
$140 for a SHOW
Serves up to 30 people

Forensics: Case of the Murdered Mayor

Using deductive reasoning and keen observation, students assume the role of crime scene investigators. They use blood typing (synthetic blood samples) and tire impressions to find the murderer. This class is recommended for grades 4 and up. 60 minutes. 4.P.1; 4.P.2; 5.P.2.3; 5.L.2; 8.L.4

$12 per person for a Field Trip
$240 for a SHOW
Serves up to 30 people

Insect World

Students investigate the largest group of animals on the planet (75% of known species), insects. Students learn how insects see, fly, eat, and more. One lucky student will get to experience life as a bug. *K.L.1.1; K.L.1.2; 1.L.1.1 - 1.L.1.3; 1.L.2.2; 2.L.1.1; 2.L.1.2

$9 per person for a Field Trip
$140 for a SHOW
Serves up to 30 people

Whoo's Food?

Investigate the food chain and food webs throughout ecosystems. Students will be able to dissect an owl pellet to see who's been eaten! In the game of predator and prey, someone has to lose. Serves up to 30 *1.L.2.2; 3.L.1.1; 4.L.1.1; 4.L.1.2; 5.L.2.2; 5.L.2.3; 6.L.2.1; 8.L.3.1; 8.L.3.2; 8.L.3.3; 8.L.5.1; 8.L.5.2

$16 per person for a Field Trip

$250 for a SHOW
Serves up to 30 people

Plant Life Cycles

Investigate plant life cycles with us as we talk about seed dispersal, dissect plants, and make paper samaras. Students will be able to dissect different types of plants to investigate just how they work! Serves up to 30 *1.L.1.1, 3.I.2.1, 3.L.2.3, 5.L.2.3, 6.L.1.1

$10 per person for a Field Trip
$180 for a SHOW
Serves up to 30 people

 

Physical Science Classes

Big Chill

Explore the world of cryogenics during this chilling presentation. Students watch nitrogen boil, see how physical characteristics change and end the program with a sweet treat! *2.P.2.1; 2.P.2.2; 3.P.2.1 - 3.P.2.3; 3.P.3.1; 3.P.3.2; 4.P.1.1; 4.P.1.2; 4.P.2.1; 5.P.2.3; 6.P.2.1; 6.P.2.2; 6.P.3.1; 6.P.3.3; 7.E.1.1; 8.P.1.1
This program is only offered in March, July, and November.

$15 per person for a Field Trip
$330 for a SHOW
Serves up to 30 people

Fun with Polymers

What do plastic bags, slime, rubber, and PVC pipes have in common? Find out with this hands-on program. Students will go through investigative stations to figure out exactly what a polymer is. Serves up to 40 *3.P.2.2, 3.P.2.3, 4.P.2.1, 5.P.2.3, 6.P.2.1

$10 per person for a Field Trip
$180 for a SHOW
Serves up to 30 people

Pop, Fizz, BOOM!

In one of our most popular programs, we explore the properties of matter. Volunteers assist with experiments showing physical and chemical changes, including both endothermic and exothermic reactions. In each experiment, we test gases produced by observing how they react with fire. Even teachers have a blast!   *2.P.2.1 - 2.P.2.3; 3.P.2.1 - 3.P.2.3; 3.P.3.2; 4.P.2.1; 5.P.3.1; 5.P.3.2; 6.P.2.1; 6.P.3.1; 7.E.1.1; 8.P.1.1 - 8.P.1.4

$9 per person for a Field Trip
$200 for a SHOW
Serves up to 100 people

Phenomenal Physics

What makes an object move? It is all a matter of physics! We use Newton’s Laws of Physics to explore force, motion, and gravity. Serves up to 100 *1.P.1.1, 1.P.1.3, 3.P1.1, 3.P.1.2, 3.P.1.3, 5.P.1.1, 5.P.1.4, 7.P.1.2

$9 per person for a Field Trip
$200 for a SHOW
Serves up to 100 people

Catch the Wave

What did one ocean say to the other? Nothing, they just waved! Find out the difference between sound and light waves through experimentation! Serves up to 100 *2.P.1.1, 2.P.1.2, 4.P.3.1, 4.P.3.2, 6.P.1.2, 6.P.1.3, 6.P.3.2

$9 per person for a Field Trip
$200 for a SHOW
Serves up to 100 people

 

Earth Science Classes

Digging in the Dirt: Archaeology & Paleontology

Students learn the difference between archaeology and paleontology and the importance of context as they examine artifacts and fossils. Students hunt for fossils in matrix from the Miocene epoch and get to keep their finds! (Pre-K and up) *K.C.1.2; K.G.1.3; K.H.1.1; K.H.1.3; K.L.1; 1.G.1.1-1.G.1.3; 1.G.2.1-1.G.2.3; 1.H.1.1; 1.L.1; 2.E.1.4; 2.G.1.1; 2.G.2.1; 2.H.1.1; 2.H.1.3; 2.L.1; 2.L.2.2; 3.C.1.3; 3.G.1.2; 3.G.1.4; 3.H.1.1; 3.H.1.3; 3.H.2.1-3.H.2.2; 3.E.1.1-3.E.1.2; 4.E.2; 4.G.1.1; 4.G.1.3; 4.H.1.3; 4.L.1; 5.C.1.2; 5.G.1.1; 5.L.2; 5.L.3; 8.E.2.1 ; 8.E.2.2; 8.L.4.1

$9 per person for a Field Trip
$140 for a SHOW
Serves up to 30 people

Weather-Or-Not

This “hair-raising” experience exposes how weather works. We explore why weather happens and the various types of weather. Students participate in demonstrations that explore rainbows, wind, the water cycle, cloud formations, tornadoes, and lightning.*2.E.1.1 - 2.E.1.4; 3.P.2.1; 5.P.2.1 - 5.P.2.3; 5.E.1.1 – 5.E.1.3; 7.E.1.2 - 7.E.1.6

$9 per person for a Field Trip
$200 for a SHOW
Serves up to 100 people

 

Dissections

Dissection classes allow students to investigate the anatomy of various animals. Dissections begin with an introduction to the specimen species and phylum. An educator then leads students through a dissection. Please book dissections 2 weeks in advance to guarantee specimen availability. Students must wear closed-toe shoes. 60-90 minutes.

$16 per person for a Field Trip
$250 for a SHOW
Serves 10 to 30 people

Specimens available:

Clam
Crayfish
Grasshopper
Starfish
Skate
Stingray
Squid
Owl Pellet
Shark *Due to a higher specimen cost this dissection is $20 per person for a Field Trip and $290 for a SHOW.
Snake *Due to a higher specimen cost this dissection is $19 per person for a Field Trip and $275 for a SHOW. 

 

Science on a Sphere® Discovery

Science On a Sphere® (SOS) is a six-foot diameter globe that illustrates earth system science using data from the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). SOS displays global storms, tsunami wave tracks, real-time weather. It can also display planets, moons, and the Sun. If you would like specific focus on topics from the programs listed below, customized programs are available with at least three-day advance notice. Student worksheets are handed out with each program.

$9 per person (includes museum admission)
Not available as a SHOW
Each program is approximately 30 minutes.
Serves 10 to 75 people

Plate Tectonics

Students discover plate tectonics by viewing plate boundaries and the geologic activity that occurs there. We discuss the theory of continental drift, plate movements, earthquakes, volcanoes, tsunamis, and deep-sea vents.

Space and the Solar System

Students take a tour of space without leaving the museum. They learn about the sun, planets, and select moons that make up our solar system. We also explore galaxies, exoplanets, stars and constellations in deep space.

Weather

NOAA’s SOS is an amazing tool for learning about, discussing, and discerning weather and weather patterns. Watch real-time satellite weather, follow air currents, and observe fronts and storms brewing.

Air Chemistry

Learn about our atmosphere and the gases that compose it. This program focuses on natural and man-made gases in our atmosphere and how air currents distribute them across the globe. Students gain an understanding of how pollution affects the earth and how atmospheric conditions affect weather, climate, and ecosystems.

Oceanography

Water covers 71% of the earth’s surface, yet we've explored less than 5%. Students take a look at what’s beneath the surface of Earth’s oceans. Topics include marine life, currents, water temperature, and the ocean floor. Students gain an understanding of how the oceans are a delicate and vital ecosystem.

 

STEM Engineering

Wind Turbines and Green Energy

Students learn the meaning and importance of clean and green energy. We discuss how wind energy is harnessed, its advantages and disadvantages. Working in small groups, students design and build wind turbines. They then measure wind energy outputs using voltmeters to choose the best design. (4th - 12th grades) *1.P.1; 3.P.1; 3.P.3; 4.P.1; 4.P.3; 5.P.1; 5.E.1.3; 6.P.3; 7.P.1; PSC, EEN

$17 per person for a Field Trip
$250 for a SHOW
Serves up to 30 people

Oil Spill Challenge

Each group will need to clean up “oil” from a simulated oil spill disaster that includes feathers to represent marine life. The learning objective is to increase the understanding of an oil spill disaster and environmental consequences. This activity is a great Life Sciences challenge for any grade level that also incorporates engineering and math concepts.

$17 per person for a Field Trip
$250 for a SHOW
Serves up to 30 people

 

NC Standard Course of Study

Our staff takes great care to consider the NC Standard Course of Study for science. If you would like a table listing curriculum objectives met by our programs for Pre-K and grades K through 8th please contact us.