On our “Timeline” tour students will get an overview as they walk through Earth’s timeline. We will hit the highlights in evolutionary trends as well as geologic and climatic changes. For grades PreK-2nd the tour will include time with our fossil touch cart.
Da Vinci Tour (Special Gallery)
There is probably no one in history who embodies the concept of STEAM better than Leonardo Da Vinci. On this tour students will learn about the famous artist and inventor and then will explore the hands-on pieces in the gallery as part of an activity challenge. These challenges will encourage students to think about how Da Vinci’s works have influences modern sciences or compare and contrast his inventions in order to think about simple machines differently.
Our STEM Activities
All of our activities are inquiry based and built around relevant TEKS. They are in ordered by target grade levels, but you can also search for activities by topic. Each colored dot represents a primary theme. Our themes are:
Paleontology & Earth Sciences
(PreK-2nd) Stegosaurus Sleuthing
Using Stegosaurus fossils as aids, students learn how paleontologists use clues from the fossil records to figure out what dinosaurs looked like and how they behaved.
(PreK-3rd) - Solar System Bracelets
Students will discuss the order of the planets in our Solar System and some features of each. Then they will make a bracelet using beads to represent the planets of the Solar System including the Sun, asteroids, and dwarf planets, to help them remember the order. They learn fun facts about the celestial bodies as the build their bracelets. Students will take home their creations.
(PreK-5th) - Sun's Energy
Students will master the color spectrum and learn about ultraviolent light as they construct a bracelet or bookmark (determined by age). As they do their project they will learn about what the sun is, what it does for us, and different properties of light.
(1st-8th) - Unique Beak Physique
Try out different “beaks” to collect different “food sources” and discover that not all beaks are equal! What will happen when a food source disappears? Why are their so many different types of beaks and how did this diversity happen? Find out in this activity.
(3rd-8th) - Solar System Models
If the distance from the sun to the edge of our solar system were 100 feet, where do you think each planet would be on that scale? Find out by guessing and then walking our solar system. The answers might surprise you!
Explore gravity and orbits with our interactive model of a solar system, using a variety of “planets” on our “fabric of space-time”.
(4th-8th) - Ecosystem Jenga
What happens when changes in ecosystems occur? Find out in this team exercise. Students will construct ecosystems of water, plants, herbivores, and carnivores, then predict what will happen as those ecosystems change.
Come see a guided tour of our nighttime sky in our immersive, 4K, digital planetarium. Planetarium shows for field trips last approximately 30 minutes and may include a live presentation by a trained astronomer along with the video. A show with a live presentation will be marked with an asterix (*).
The live presentation covers topics in our night sky such as constellations, patterns and cycles, overviews of selected celestial bodies in our solar system, and more.
(PreK - 2nd) - Clockwork Skies*
Running roughly 5 minutes, this video highlights prominent objects in our sky, patterns and cycles, and how the precision of the sun, moon, and stars are reflected in our daily timekeeping.
(3rd-5th) - Incredible Sun*
Running roughly 11 minutes, this video shows how astronomers study the sun, including its patterns and its relationship with Earth.
(3rd-5th) - Light*
(6th-12th) - Journey to the Center of the Milky Way*
Running roughly 7 minutes, this video explains how astronomers have used different wavelengths of light to discover a black hole.