Events & Programs
Science On Wheels: Library Programs
Science On Wheels will bring the excitement of science, math and technology to your library with live shows, workshops, exhibit sets and planetariums! These offerings feature fun, hands-on activities designed to enhance your library programming. Programs can be booked individually or combined to build a more wide-ranging experience. For libraries located outside of King, Pierce or Snohomish counties, please call (206) 443-2925.
New Offering! Imagine Your Story
Pacific Science Center’s Science On Wheels program is proud to bring the excitement of science, technology, engineering and math to your library! Discover our STEM activities designed specifically for this year’s Summer Reading Program theme, Imagine Your Story.
Our engaging 40-minute live science shows present scientific content and methods in a compelling and fun presentation. Audience participation and giant props make science pop with excitement.
Explore the many ways we use numbers, shapes, probability and measurement every day and how we would be lost without them. This interactive show uses volunteers, games and a thrilling chemical reaction to demonstrate that math truly is a blast.
Heat! Light! Gas! Color change! See our presenter throw fire and create rainbows as you investigate the properties of chemical reactions in this lively and fact-filled show.
Explore your fabulous five senses! Put your taste buds to the test, make “scents” of mysterious odors, open your eyes to illusions and more! Geared toward audiences in grades PreK-2. A controlled fire demonstration (optional) is included in this show; call to learn more. Controlled fire demonstrations require a ceiling height of at least 12 feet.
Super Cool Science Show
Discover what happens when things get super cool with liquid nitrogen! Watch as gases become liquids, liquids become solids and matter fizzes, freezes and flies.
Volts & Jolts
Electricity is illuminated in a series of shocking experiments! Explore the properties of electricity with our hair-raising Van de Graaff Generator and Tesla Coil.
- 400 participants maximum
- Large area such as a gym or multipurpose room
- A stage or performance area
- Two large tables for presenter(s)
- Access to water and electricity
- Access to a sound system, if available
- Many shows must be performed inside; call (206) 443-2925 for more information.
Transform any large room into a science center! These hands-on science exhibit sets are designed to be an engaging “science playground” for all participants.
- Blood & Guts* (Anatomy and Physiology)
- Brain Power (Neuroscience)
- Harvesting Science* (Agriculture)
- Physics On Wheels*
- Rock and Roll*(Geology)
- Space Odyssey* (Astronomy)
*Exhibits in English and Spanish
- 25ft x 25ft covered area
- 10-12 large tables (without chairs)
- Access to electricity for most exhibit sets
Engaging, content-rich, hands-on workshops taught by Science On Wheels educators.
Libraries can book additional workshops at different libraries in their area on the same day – at a discounted rate!
For planetarium workshops, please see the Planetariums section
What can astronomers learn about the lives of the stars from rainbows? Using spectroscopic glasses, analyze star gases to learn about stellar composition and evolution. Dark room needed. (For ages 5-14)
This workshop is about how important the Earth’s atmosphere is. Students explore how the Earth and Moon are different atmospherically and make their own craters on a model of the Moon. Students also experiment with different materials to find good insulators. (For ages 5-10)
Get up close and personal to some real insects! Discover what makes an insect an insect and then design your very own. Touch the wings of a butterfly and look at its body parts through a magnifying lens, then meet a real live Madagascar Hissing Cockroach! (For ages 5-9)
But how much can you really see? In this workshop, students investigate microscopes. After learning the different parts of a microscope, students get to use them to take close up looks at a wide variety of samples. Then they play a matching game where they figure out the identity of highly magnified images. (For ages 9-14)
Students get to experiment with different track designs to find one that will send their marble the farthest across the room using only gravity for force. By the end of the class, students will be able to make a marble go uphill using only the force it gains from the student dropping it from a higher point. (For ages 5-14)
This workshop is about rockets. Students will get an overview of Newton’s third law of motion and learn how air pressure can be used as a force that can work to move a rocket. The class talks about modern spacecraft design and then students engineer and launch their own bottle rockets (site must have access to outdoors for rocket launching). (For ages 9-17)
This workshop introduces students to some of the smallest rocks found in geology… Sand! From source material to beautiful beaches, students will follow the rugged journey of sand. They will view with flashscopes a variety of sands from around the world, learn why sand is so important and how to classify different types of sand. Finally, they will work in geologist groups to test the permeability of some sediment samples! (For ages 5-10)
Crystal Shape Investigators
In this workshop, students will explore the beautiful world of crystals. Using a scientific handheld illuminator, they will observe a variety of different minerals and crystals. They will learn what it takes to make a crystal and have the opportunity to grow their own Epsom salt crystals. More advanced classes will explore crystal structure and learn what makes crystal shapes special. (For ages 9-14)
How slow can you go? In this workshop, students have an unusual challenge – they need to roll a ball down a ramp as slowly as possible. After learning how the degree of an inclined plane affects the speed and acceleration of a ball rolling down it, students will design, test, and redesign a ramp that keeps the ball rolling as slowly as possible. Students use stopwatches to time their slow races! (For ages 5-14)
Zap, crackle, pop! In this workshop, students uncover the world of electricity. Students learn what electrons are and then experiment with different ways of moving electrons to make static electricity. Can they make a light bulb glow using a balloon? At the end of the class, students get to experiment with a Van de Graaff machine. It’s a hair-raising experience! (For ages 5-14)
Early Learner programs are designed to ignite curiosity and create excitement for science, whether during the school day or at weekend or evening family events. Workshops are available for ages 3-5. Learn More
- 24 participants per workshop maximum
- Access to a whiteboard, if available
- Tables and chairs for participants
- At least one staff member or adult must be present
- Workshops must be scheduled consecutively on the same day
- Workshops must be from the same science topic
Bring our inflatable planetariums to your location for an astronomical show! Planetariums can be booked for three one-hour workshops or for a three-hour period with flexible scheduling for all ages and group sizes. Both options include a live experience facilitated by Science On Wheels educators.
Grade-level workshops are designed for specific grade bands and support Next Generation Science Standards.
Up in the Sky
Go on a stargazing adventure in our portable planetarium. Inside, learn your way around the giant “connect-the-dot” pictures in the sky.
Join in the telling of cultural myths from around the world related to the stars and constellations.
Can you “read” the nighttime sky? Learn how to use a star map and then apply your new skills as you hunt for seasonal constellations across the sky in the portable planetarium.
Can the sky be a calendar or a tool for navigation? Explore how the sky appears to change through the night and year and what these changes have meant to different people around the world. Hear star stories from different cultures as you identify a variety of constellations.
A Star’s Life
Explore stellar evolution on a tour of different aged stars in Orion. Discover how fusion and gravity compete and what causes red giants, white dwarves and black holes. Travel to deep space to see the remnants of a star’s violent fiery death witnessed by astronomers in 1054!
Customized Planetarium Shows
Customized Planetarium Shows allow for flexibility in the length and content of each show for various audiences. Our Science On Wheels Educators can tailor shows for families, high school classes, and adults.
- 30 participants maximum
- Large indoor space such as a gym or multipurpose room, planetarium dimensions are 25ft x 25ft x 12ft
- Due to noise, this area cannot be used for other activities during planetarium workshop(s)
- At least one staff member or adult must be present
- Access to electricity
- If any participants in your group have accessibility requirements, please let us know so we may provide reasonable accommodations.
Request A Science On Wheels Program
Not sure what you’re looking for? Programs can be adapted to fit your needs. Call (206) 443-2925 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
TDD: (206) 443-2887
Financial assistance may be available for qualifying organizations. Please inquire in the notes section of the program request form, or email email@example.com