Skip to main content

September Home School Descriptions

Enrichment Programs:

Airy Adventures (Ages 3-5)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Try some extraordin-Air-y experiments. Utilize air to fill balloons, move objects, and learn about the invisible substance that constantly surrounds you.

Art & the Cosmic Connection (Ages 8-18)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Discover science through art. Learn about our solar system with art in mind. Explore the geology of planetary objects and create art inspired by planetary images.

Aww Shucks! (Ages 9-13)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Learn about life in the bay as you get up close and personal with our favorite bivalves – oysters! Explore how these filter feeders eat, where they live, and why they are so important to the Chesapeake Bay.

Brilliant Binary (Ages 12-16)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Learn how to interpret binary digits – the special code used by computers – and create your own binary display system. Explore different ways that electronics use binary code to store and send information.

Creative Symmetry (Ages 11-15)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Geometry and artistic expression combine in this introduction to kirigami and tessellations. Explore the rules of symmetry, challenge your spatial reasoning and create some mesmerizing art work.

Curds and Whey (Ages 10-18)
Capacity: 15 students
Length: 45 minutes
Cheese making might seem like an ancient art, but it takes an understanding of science to know how it works and learn how milk combines with acids, enzymes, or bacteria to produce tasty cheese.

Dive! Dive! Dive! (Ages 6-8)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Create your own toy submarine and learn all about chemical reactions and buoyancy. Explore how submarines are designed to dive and rise through the water by changing their density.

Dry Ice: How Cool is That (Ages 8-12)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
It’s all about carbon dioxide (CO2). Using dry ice, explore some of its special properties. Reveal phenomena related to density and states of matter. Check out how a fire extinguisher works, freeze some bubbles, and look at how this common substance is connected to climate change.

Earth Alive (Ages 8-18)
Capacity: 30 students
Length: 30 minutes
Explore our active planet – earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanoes, and severe weather. What’s happening on Earth today? Find out at Science On a Sphere.

Electro-Art Studio (Ages 14-18)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Combine chemistry and electricity to create a custom piece of metal art to take home. Learn how similar etching and electroplating techniques are used to create circuit boards in electronic devices.

Enlighten Me (Ages 7-9)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
What’s in a glow stick that makes it glow? What makes things light up under a black light? Is it possible to have a goldfish nightlight? Discover the answers to these questions and more as you investigate things that luminesce, shine, and glow in the dark.

Explore a New Planet (Ages 9-14)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Experience planet discovery and exploration methods while comparing planet surface detail by way of Earth observation, fly-by missions, orbiting spacecraft, and landers.

Fundamental “Fizz”ics (Ages 6-8)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Test out household ingredients like yeast and antacid tablets to find out which will make the biggest foam or the most colorful fizz. Discover the science behind such fizzes and foams as you conduct some simple sudsy experiments.

Fungus Among Us (Ages 10-18)
Capacity: 15 students
Length: 45 minutes
We all know that yeast makes bread rise, but how does it do that? Explore what this fungus needs to live and make your own bread dough.

Handy Hydraulics (Ages 9-14)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
If there’s heavy lifting to be done, hydraulics might be the answer. Investigate the hydraulic systems used in elevators and other machinery. Build a simple hydraulic gadget to take home.

Insects and Ecosystems (Ages 7-9)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Encounter live insects and take on an insect role as you discover the part insects play in the life of plants, the health of the soil, and the flow of energy through a food web.

Investigating Icy Worlds (Ages 10-18)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Similar to what the New Horizons space craft will do at Pluto this July, you will simulate observing various wavelengths of light of the electromagnetic spectrum to reveal and analyze surface features.

It’s Bright, All Right! (Ages 11-14)
Capacity: 16 students
Length: 45 minutes
Do you want to be an artist? Do you want to work for NASA? Do you know that you can do both? Art and science come together in this hands-on look at how pictures are taken by NASA satellites in space, and how you can learn to be an artist for NASA.

Just Ducky (Ages 3-5)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Discover why water rolls off a duck’s back, webbed feet work best in water, and duck beaks are useful tools. Explore the differences between ducks and humans as you perform some fun science and art projects.

Life Aquatic (Ages 9-14)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Investigate the connections between biotic and abiotic elements of an aquatic ecosystem and identify the variables that affect sustainability. Then, create a small scale living ecosystem of your very own!

Light It Up with LEDs (Ages 8-14)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
This make-and-take class will review the basics of simple circuits and switches as participants create their own LED flashlight.

Marvelous Maryland Animals (Ages 6-8)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Take an up-close-and-personal look at some of our animals that live here in Maryland. Learn their life history, see and touch some of our native species, and find out how we affect where and how they live here in their home state. You will encounter crustaceans, reptiles, and amphibians.

MSC’s Next Top Model (Ages 10-14)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Explore several types of scientific models and assess their advantages and limitations. Work with a team to invent and create a model.

Moon Mythbusters (Ages 9-18)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Explore myths about the Moon. How does the Moon influence Earth and humans? Does it affect your life? What would Earth be like with no Moon? Work on a puzzle of Moon myths and Moon truths.

Motorized Monsters (Ages 10-15)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Make a motorized pipe cleaner monster that can drop onto unsuspecting passersby! Experiment with circuits, forces, weights, and switches in order to make a toy to take home just in time for Halloween.

Noise Toys (Ages 6-8)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Learn how sound works, and discover when it can’t. Experiment with materials to create your own noise toys. You can even make a stringed instrument you can tune yourself!

Potato Power (Ages 6-8)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Using potatoes to power your own take-home clock, learn about how a battery works in a simple circuit and how chemical energy changes to electrical energy.

Red, Yellow, Blue, and You (Ages 3-5)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Explore different ways to mix colors using flashlights and movement. Find out what you can do with red, yellow, and blue, and where all those other colors come from.

Science Below Zero (Ages 12-18)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Nitrogen, the most abundant gas element in our atmosphere, is even cooler as a liquid. Discover how everyone from space exploring astronauts to grounded earthlings uses this cryogenic liquid to help improve their lives.

Solar System by Request (Ages 8-18)
Capacity: 30 students
Length: 30 minutes
This freeform program will include full global displays of the Sun, planets, and moons as requested by participants. The instructor will explain features and highlights of interest for each object.

Squirrel Aerodynamics (Ages 5-8)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Read the book Those Darn Squirrels Fly South and explore aerodynamics and flight. Build an aircraft to help the squirrels fly south and see if it can fly. Take home projects to build other flying machines.

What’s in the Water? (Ages 9-14)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
How do we make our water safe to drink? You will work together to test different water filters, and then create a model of the super small nanotechnology that is being used to stop waterborne diseases.

Ziplock Chemistry (Ages 8-12)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 45 minutes
Conduct your own chemical reactions inside plastic bags, record and share results – all to uncover how matter and energy are transformed.

Observatory Program:

Our Star, the Sun (Ages 8-18)
Capacity: 25 people
Length: 40 minutes
Weather permitting, get a safe view of the Sun and solar features of the day. Find out how solar features like sunspots and solar storms are related. Discover what makes September’s Autumnal Equinox a special date.

Workshop Week:

Camouflage Critters (Ages 8-12)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 90 minutes (double session)
Discover how physical features can help or hinder many animal species in a wide range of habitats. Create your own camouflaged creature and then adapt it to a new environment. A portion of this program will take place on the Maryland Science Center’s green roof, rain or shine, so dress for the weather.

Circuit Challenge (Ages 8-14)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 90 minutes (double session)
Investigate conductors, insulators, and what is needed to complete a circuit. Compare different types of circuits and enjoy a hands-on circuit building experience. Be charged to think creatively in order to design a circuit solution that meets a challenge.

Engineering Puff Mobiles (Ages 10-16)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 90 minutes (double session)
Teams will be designing and making “puff mobiles” powered by wind power. Discuss principles of force and motion and modify designs to increase distance your puff mobile can travel.

Lunar Landers (Ages 8-14)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 90 minutes (double session)
Learn about the challenges of putting astronauts on the moon. Use the engineering design process to create and build a model lunar lander made from everyday materials. Test your lander and make design improvements in order to create the best possible design.

Motorcraft (Ages 10-16)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 90 minutes (double session)
What is a motor and how does it work? Investigate the science behind motors and create your own motorized gadget to take home.

Soap Bubble Math (Ages 9-11)
Capacity: 20 students
Length: 90 minutes (double session)
Many bubble companies claim their product offers millions of bubbles, but is that really true? It’s up to you to decide how to answer that question by designing a procedure and then collecting data. What answers will your investigation reveal? That’s all up to you!

Planetarium Programs:

Live Programs

Beyond Your Backyard Sky (Ages 9 and up)
Capacity: 140 people
Length: 45 minutes
Begin with a backyard exploration of current sky highlights before launching through the space around Earth, the solar system, and Milky Way Galaxy.

Discover the Planets (Ages 10 and up)
Capacity: 140 people
Length: 45 minutes
Unfold the mystery of how ancient observers distinguished the planets among the stars. Discover planets visible in the current sky and the constellations they shine among.

Eclipsing the Moon (Ages 8 and up)
Capacity: 140 people
Length: 45 minutes
Get ready for a Total Lunar Eclipse on October 8th. Investigate phases of the Moon to understand how and when eclipses happen. You will simulate the monthly cycle of phases while you chart how the Moon appears to change.


Meet the Solar System
(Ages 4-7)
Capacity: 140 people
Length: 35 minutes
This introduction to our family of the Sun features crayon likenesses of the Sun, Moon, and planets. In this friendly first encounter of our solar system’s primary members, you’ll practice planet names and learn what makes them special.

Recorded Planetarium Programs

Back To The Moon For Good (Ages 9 and up)
Capacity: 140 people
Length: 35 minutes
This program reviews Moon missions of the past while looking ahead to future lunar explorations through competition and collaboration. Learn about teams around the world competing for the Google Lunar XPRIZE to land and navigate a robotic spacecraft on the Moon.

Black Holes: Journey into the Unknown (Ages 12 and up)
Capacity: 140 people
Length: 35 minutes
Consider a place where time stands still and the unimaginable becomes reality – welcome to the world of black holes.

One World One Sky: Big Bird’s Adventure (Ages 7 and under)
Capacity: 140 people
Length: 35 minutes
Follow Sesame Street’s Big Bird and Elmo as they explore the night sky with Hu Hu Zhu, a Muppet from the Chinese co-production of Sesame Street.

Solar Quest (Ages 10 and up)
Capacity: 140 people
Length: 35 minutes
Solar Quest explores the impacts of space weather and how the Earth’s atmosphere and magnetic field protects all life on Earth.

We Are Aliens (Ages 8 and up)
Capacity: 140 people
Length: 35 minutes
Explore how our understanding of life on Earth guides the hunt for alien life elsewhere in the universe.

IMAX Shows:

Beavers (Ages 4 and up)
Capacity: 390 people
Length: 35 minutes
It’s a timeless tale of action and adventure following the life and rich aquatic habitat of one of nature’s greatest engineers set against the broad canvas of the majestic Canadian Rockies. Trek through the Canadian Rockies with a family of beavers as they fell trees, construct their lodge, evade the forest’s predators and transform their environment.

Flight of the Butterflies 3D (Ages 8 and up)
Capacity: 330 people
Length: 45 minutes
Follow the migration of the monarch butterfly from Mexico to Canada and a determined scientist’s decades long search to find their hidden overwintering sites. Watch their amazing transformation from pupa to adult monarch.

Forces of Nature (Ages 8 and up)
Capacity: 390 people
Length: 40 minutes
Witness the awesome spectacle of earthquakes, volcanoes, and severe storms as you follow scientists on their quests to understand how these natural disasters are triggered. Watch first hand as volcanoes erupt, earthquakes tremble and tornadoes lash the sky, and explore the origins and effects of these fascinating natural forces. A National Geographic production.

The Human Body (Ages 10 and up)
Capacity: 390 people
Length: 45 minutes
Witness the many hidden miracles that happen every day inside the male and female body. The Human Body features remarkable inner body photography to explore the biological processes that go on without our control and often without our notice.

Island of Lemurs: Madagascar 3D (Ages 8 and up)
Capacity: 330 people
Length: 40 minutes
Travel to the remote and lush land of Madagascar. Lemurs arrived millions of years ago here as castaways and have evolved into hundreds of various and beautiful forms. Follow the adventure of these playful explorers, now highly endangered.

Penguins 3D (Ages 8 and up)
Capacity: 330 people
Length: 40 minutes
Follow the story of King Penguins in their birthplace in the sub-Antarctic, an island that’s home to hundreds of albatrosses, fur seals, brawling elephant seals, and six million penguins. The King Penguin and his mate nurture and defend their offspring against harsh weather and fierce predators.

Star Spangled Banner: Anthem of Liberty (Ages 8 and up)
Capacity: 390 people
Length: 20 minutes
Watch the British bombardment of Fort McHenry in Baltimore and discover how it led to the writing of the Star-Spangled Banner. See Mary Pickersgill sew one of the largest American flags ever made and one that signaled victory at the Fort. Live action footage shot at the Fort combined with computer graphics imagery bring the battle and its historic significance to life on the IMAX screen.

Titans of the Ice Age 3D (Ages 8 and up)
Capacity: 330 people
Length: 40 minutes
Journey back in time, 10,000 years before modern civilization, to the prehistoric frozen landscapes of North America, Europe and Asia. Realistic computer generated imagery brings long-lost creatures such as the saber-toothed cats and woolly mammoths to life on the giant screen. Discover how mammoths and humans confronted the changing climate and what lessons we might learn from their struggles.

To The Arctic 3D (Ages 8 and up)
Capacity: 330 people
Length: 40 minutes
Journey to the top of the world where the environment is warming and threatening the polar bear’s existence. View a tale of survival and explore the lives of a mother polar bear and her two cubs as they navigate the changing Arctic wilderness they call home.