Frequently Asked Questions
Who are the Science Museum's teachers?
Our teachers come from a variety of backgrounds. They all have experience working with kids and enjoy teaching hands-on, interactive classes. Some of them are school teachers, some are science professionals. Some teachers are artists and some are graduate students working towards degrees in education or the sciences. Find out more about the Science Museum's instructors.
Will my child be safe while in class?
Because the museum is a public space, a Youth & Family staff member will accompany students at all times, including bathroom breaks, exploring the museum, and walking to and from classrooms.
My child is gifted and talented. Do you make exceptions to the age categories?
Our program is very popular with parents of gifted and talented children. Your child will have a chance to interact with a peer group that also loves learning, go into topics in a more in-depth way than a school program may provide, and have the opportunity to develop higher order thinking skills like creative problem solving. We see teamwork and other socialization skills as important skills to develop for all children. We ask that parents observe our age categories in order to provide the best experience for all children.
My child is five years old and is in/has completed kindergarten. Which classes are best?
Children who are currently enrolled or have recently completed kindergarten are ready for our 6-8 year old classes. The pre-school program is no longer appropriate for your child.
What should my child bring and wear?
We will provide all the materials necessary for your class or camp unless we have notified you about bringing a particular item from home. All participants should wear comfortable clothing that can get a little messy.
What are the classrooms like?
Each of our brand new classrooms has kid-sized everything - tables, chairs, even a sink! We have a laboratory classroom for chemistry and microbiology, a kitchen classroom, a special carpentry classroom, and more.
Can parents sit in and observe the classes?
We offer both kids-only and family classes. Kids-only classes foster independent learning and socialization. If you or your child are not comfortable in a kids-only class, we recommend our family classes. Family classes offer opportunities for a child and an adult to learn science together. In most of our week-long programs, we offer a Friday Open House for parents to see what the kids have done during the week.
Where should I bring my child for class?
We offer a convenient pick-up and drop-off location for parents who don't want the hassle of finding and paying for a parking space. Our staff will check in and out your child curbside and supervise them as they wait for their teacher to bring them to class.
How do I get to the museum?
Click here to see a map and directions to the museum.
My child has some special needs. Can I speak to the instructor before class?
All children are welcome in our programs. Please let us know in advance about any special needs your child may have (allergies, behavior disorders, accessibility concerns, etc.) We rely on information you give us to find ways for our staff to provide a successful experience for your child. Our staff can remind a student to take medication with written information from a parent or guardian, however, we are unable to administer medications at any time.
How many students are in each class?
Our teacher to student ratio is never more than 1:15. Our typical classes have a maximum of 12 students. Our preschool classes have a maximum of 10 students. Our larger classes will often benefit from a youth assistant in the classroom to assist the teacher.
What can parents do to encourage science learning at home?
Click here to check out some of our cool online activities.