Outreach Programs

Let us bring Hands On! to you!  Outreach programs are the perfect way to add fun and educational activities and experiments to your classroom, home-school co-op, festival, ministry, birthday party, or special event. Curriculum guidelines are listed for reference where appropriate.

Both short-term and long-term outreach programs are available.  Details regarding long-term outreach programming for afterschool programs or on-going science nights are located at the end of this page.

Mileage charge is $0.55 per roundtrip mile. Help us to cut costs for you and protect the environment: book multiple programs for the same day in different classrooms or neighboring schools.

To schedule your outreach, please contact Sarah Laposky, Experience Manager, at outreach@visithandson.org or (423) 434-4263 ext. 808

Short-term Outreach Programs

Animal Dissections (Recommended for 3rd-8th Grade)

Discover animal anatomy through dissection!  Dissections are $75 per program plus roundtrip mileage for up to 30 students plus an additional fee for specimens.  All dissections must be scheduled a minimum of 1 month in advance to allow for ordering and delivery of specimens.  Dissections require a minimum order of 10 specimens.

  • Owl Pellets – $4-5 per specimen depending on size and availability of specimen
  • Squid – $5-18 per specimen depending on size and type selected and availability of specimen
  • Frog – $6-28 per specimen depending on size and type selected and availability of specimen
  • Dogfish Shark – $14-32 per specimen depending on size and type selected and availability of specimen
  • Sheep Heart – $8-25 per specimen depending on size and type selected and availability of specimen
  • Fetal Pig – $29-38 per specimen depending on size and type selected and availability of specimen

Can You Feel the Pressure (Recommended for K-5th Grade)

$60/class (Up to 30 children) plus roundtrip mileage.  Ask us about multiple program discounts!

Did you know that you have 14 pounds of air pressure pushing on every inch of your body? Watch as our famous potato launcher sends potato pieces flying, shoot an Alka-Seltzer rocket and even see a grown-up get vacuum sealed!

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Can You Hear Me Now? (Recommended for K-5th Grade)

$60/class (Up to 30 children) plus roundtrip mileage.  Ask us about multiple program discounts!

Discover some of the smallest bones in the body – the ones in our ears! Play a song on our palm pipes, listen to our crystal water glasses, and even try out our Boomwhackers!

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Do You See What EYE See? (Recommended for 2nd-4th Grade)

$30/class (Up to 30 children) plus roundtrip mileage. Ask us about multiple program discounts!

Create your own unique optical illusion, test out the eye patch penny drop, and unlock your secret x-ray vision. Learn how your eye works and test out some awesome optical illusions.

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Forensics Challenge (Recommended for 3rd-5th Grade) 

$60/class (Up to 30 children) plus roundtrip mileage. Ask us about multiple program discounts!

Become a crime scene detective as you work to investigate, reconstruct, analyze, and identify a culprit! Also learn about fingerprinting and separate strawberry DNA!

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Give Me 5! (Recommended for Pre-K-1st Grade)

$30/class (Up to 30 children) plus roundtrip mileage. Ask us about multiple program discounts!

Excite your senses with the jellybean challenge, test out some optical illusions, try your hand at our mystery touch box, and more!  *May contain traces of nuts or soy.  **May not be suitable for children under 3. Substitutions may be available.

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Go with the Flow (Recommended for K-8th Grade)

$60 (Up to 30 Children) plus roundtrip mileage. Ask us about multiple program discounts!

Discover the destructive forces of erosion with our three-dimensional EnviroScape! Try out a sinkhole-in-a-cup experiment as you explore the power of erosion!

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Heart Smart (Recommended for K-2nd Grade)

$45/class (Up to 30 children) plus roundtrip mileage. Ask us about multiple program discounts!

Get your blood pumping with a straw heart monitor experiment, and help your group make plasma soup! Explore how the heart works and what it does for you!

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Inside Out (Recommended for K-2nd Grade)

$30/class (Up to 30 children) plus roundtrip mileage. Ask us about multiple program discounts!

There’s no bones about it, x-rays are excellent! Get an up close and personal view of a variety of animal x-rays. Use your new found knowledge to craft your own sheep x-ray!

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Jr. Paleontologist (Recommended for K-8th Grade)

$60/class (Up to 30 children) plus roundtrip mileage. Ask us about multiple program discounts!

Test out your paleontology skills while picking for real micro-fossils in sediment from Aurora, NC.  Then, test out your knowledge with our Fossil or Fake? game.

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Marvelous Magnets (Recommended for K-3rd Grade)

$45/class (Up to 30 children) plus roundtrip mileage. Ask us about multiple program discounts!

May the force be with you! Discover the magnetic properties of breakfast cereal, design your very own magnet maze, and play with some magnetic gadgets!

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Movin’ & Groovin’ (Recommended for Pre-K-1st Grade)

$30/class (Up to 30 children) plus roundtrip mileage. Ask us about multiple program discounts!

March to the beat of your own drum, dance and groove, and explore movement with our 12-foot parachute.

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Hands on Museum - kid making silly putty and the Gray Fossil Site

Polymers & Putty (Recommended for K-5th Grade)

$60/class (Up to 30 children) plus roundtrip mileage. Ask us about multiple program discounts!

Discover the exciting world of polymers by making your own silly putty, and stretch a polymer chain with plumber’s tape!

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Rainbow Science (Recommended for K-1st Grade)

$30/class (Up to 30 children) plus roundtrip mileage. Ask us about multiple program discounts!

Meet Roy G. Biv and discover the science of rainbows! Test out your rainbow-making skills with our prisms and try a rainbow milk experiment.

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Hands on Museum - Rainbow Milk

Wacky Weather (Recommended for K-6th Grade)

$60 (Up to 30 Children) plus roundtrip mileage.  Ask us about multiple program discounts!

Calling all future meteorologists! Discover a variety of weather patterns, try out our tornado tube, and create your very own instant snow!

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Long-term Themed Outreach Programs (Recommended for K-8th Grade)

We offer long-term, on-going programs where concepts are built upon over the course of six- to eight- weeks per semester.  These long term programs offer students the chance to explore content more in depth and build upon concepts.

Pricing varies upon number of students, program content chosen, grade level(s), and location.  For more information on long-term outreach program options or to inquire about a proposal, please contact Heather Watson, Vice President-Education and Exhibits, at heather@visithandson.org.

Themes available include:

  • Air-Mazing!– The AIR-mazing outreach program inspires participants to view the air around them in different ways and to problem solve around a variety of restraints. Participants will explore the properties of air, air pressure, and aerodynamics.
  • Contraptions– Students will explore the areas of physical science and engineering through a variety of activities and will conclude with a final project of designing and engineering a large-scale cause and effect Rube Goldberg machine.
  • Da Vinci Design Squad– Da Vinci Design Squad will inspire participants to view the world around them in different ways and to problem solve around a variety of restraints. Participants will begin with small-scale bridge and geodesic dome design and construction, and will end with large- scale, room-filling construction.
  • Extreme Earth– Extreme Earth allows participants to explore the fascinating natural phenomena that occur on Earth each day through problem solving and inquiry in a safe and appropriate manner.
  • Fossil Finders– This programming allows students to step back in time to the Miocene-epoch. Students will explore paleontology as they discover what fossils have been unearthed, essentially in their “backyard”, at the Gray Fossil Site located at the Hands On! Discovery Center.
  • Investigate! Forensics– This program will allow participants to explore the fascinating technology of forensic science through problem solving and inquiry in a safe and appropriate manner. Students will have the opportunity to explore DNA extraction, fingerprint dusting, and evidence analysis, and utilize their gained skills to solve a playful mystery case.
  • Kitchen Chemistry– The Kitchen Chemistry outreach program will allow students the chance to realize that the exciting world of science exists in everyday life!
  • Shocking Science– This program will allow participants to view the role of electricity in world around them in different ways and to problem solve around a variety of restraints. Explore circuits, batteries, LED gadgets and more.
  • Space Rangers– Explore the origin and structure of the universe. Explore planets, gravity, and even compete in some mock astronaut training.
  • Superhero Science– The Superhero Science outreach program will allow students the chance to unmask the science behind some of their favorite superheroes and superpowers! Participants will have the chance to further probe into principles behind super powers and uncover validations, violations, and conflicts within scientific reality.