Field Trips at SciTech

SciTech Hands On Museum is the perfect gateway to STEAM – Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math. Our exhibits are all designed and built as mini science experiments. Whether you are introducing a subject or wrapping up a lesson plan with real experiences, SciTech is a perfect field trip destination!

Tailor your Discovery Day field trip to compliment your lesson plan.

Choose a Class Demo, a Class Challenge, a Hands On Lab, or an Advanced Challenge!

Additional Add-Ons include the seasonal Fox Motion Park and Subway lunches.

Discovery Day

With three levels and over 200 exhibits, students are able to explore big topics, such as Weather, Energy, Magnetics, Space, Light, Optical Illusions, Human Body, and more! The Hands On approach to these topics enables students of all ages to discover how and why STEAM works.

Teachers are invited to join their students in exploring STEAM – Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math – enjoy the exhibits and leave the scheduling to the SciTech Discovery team! A Discovery Day at SciTech includes use of the lunchroom and exploration time on all of the levels of the museum. Our recommendation is a 2.5 hour minimum visit.

Whether your group is a small bunch of students or multiple classes from a school, SciTech will create a schedule that ensures that everyone sees the entire museum.

Large groups may be split into  smaller “color groups” to accommodate classroom capacities.

What Teachers Say:

Class Demo

Demos are 30-minute interactive demonstration often involving 1-3 volunteers. Demo introduce the topic or require standard. This is a great option if you want to get your students excited about learning a particular topic and plan to do more in depth work in the classroom later. 

Our recommendation is a 3 hour minimum visit if you want to schedule a demo.

Kindergarten, First grade, Second grade

What does decomposition mean? What causes rot and decay in nature? Why are six legged creatures like cockroaches important? These questions and more are explored in our Decomposers demo! Students will learn about different insects and organisms associated with a very important part of the food chain, decomposers! These are more than just creepy crawlers.

 

Standards:

Kindergarten

  • LS1-1. Use observations to describe patterns of what plants and animals (including humans) need to survive
  • ESS3-1: Use a model to represent the relationship between the needs of different plants and animals (insects) and the places they live.

Second Grade

  • LS4-1: make observations of plants and animals to compare the diversity of life in different habitats. 

Third grade

  • LS2-1: construct an argument that some animals form groups to help members survive. 

First grade, Second Grade, Third Grade

What is the difference between a paleontologist and an archaeologist? Are all old animals dinosaurs? These questions and more are explored in our Prehistoric Ecology demo! Students learn the diets, habitats, and time periods about popular dinosaurs. Test your skills at the end to see if you can guess that dinosaur based on the skeleton or the teeth! If you were not a dinosaur fan before this class, you will be after!

 

Standards

Kindergarten

  • LS1-1: Use Observations to describe what plants and animals need to survive
  • ESS3-1: use a model to represent the relationship between the needs of different plants or animals

Third grade

  • LS2-1: Construct an argument that some animals form groups that help members survive
  • LS3-2 Use evidence to support the explanation that traits can be influenced by the environment
  • LS4-1: Analyze and interpret data from fossils to provide evidence of the organisms and the environments in which they lived long ago
  • LS4-3: Construct an argument with evidence that in a particular habitat some organisms can survive well, some survive less well, and some cannot survive at all.

First grade, Second grade, Third grade

What are the four states of matter? Can matter change states? Solids into liquids, liquids into gases, and wait…what is plasma? These questions and more are explored in our Chemistry demo! Students will be amazed by the power of chemical reactions and yes, there will be fire. One of our most popular classes, new and improved!

Standards: 

Second grade

  • PS1-1:Plan and conduct an investigation to describe and classify different kinds of materials by their observables
  • PS1-4: Construct an argument with evidence that some changes caused by heating or cooling can be reversed and some cannot.

 First grade, Second grade, Third grade

What is pollination? Do all insects pollinate? Why is pollination important? These questions and more are explored in the Plant Pollination demo! We will talk about pollination by exploring the big pollinators of the world: butterflies, moths, and bees! Students will see how the life cycles of the insects and plants work together in a symbiosis relationship that is necessary for the ecosystem and the whole world! Not to mention we bring out real beekeeper equipment. 

Standards:

Third grade

  • LS2- construct an argument that some organisms form groups that help members survive 
  • LS4-3: construct an argument with evidence that in a particular habitat some organisms can survive well, some survive less well, and some cannot survive at all.
  • LS4-4: Make a claim about the merits of a solution to a problem caused when the environment changes and the type of plants and animals that live there may change

Third grade, Fourth grade, Fifth grade

How are magnets connected to electricity? What are conductors and insulators? What is the difference between an open and a closed circuit? These questions and more are explored in our Electricity and Magnets demo! Students will see a variety of machines generate electricity while gaining knowledge of the scientists who invented them. Get ready for an electrifying experience! 

Standards

Third grade

  • PS2-3. Ask questions to determine cause and effect relationships of electric or magnetic interactions between two objects not in contact with each other.
  • PS2-4: Define a simple design problem that can be solved by applying scientific ideas about magnets

Fourth Grade

  • PS3-2: make observations to provide evidence that energy can be transferred from place to place by electricity

Third grade, Fourth grade, Fifth grade

What is the difference between evaporation and condensation? What is plasma and how is it related to lightning? How does air pressure affect movement? These questions and more are explored in our Weather demo! And weather would never be complete if we didn’t show the kids some lightening. Join us for awesome weather! Perfect for any time of year.

Fourth grade, Fifth grade, Sixth grade, Seventh grade, Eight grade

What are the signs of a chemical reaction?  This is more than taking batter and making a cake. Watch amazing chemical experiments that break the 7 signs of a chemical reaction down to a science! From color changes to exothermic reactions, this demonstration is sure to excite students chemistry!

Standards

Fourth Grade

  • PS3-2: make observations to provide evidence that energy can be transferred from place to place by sound, light, or heat.

What Teachers Say:

Class Challenge

A Challenge is 30-minute Hands On engineering activity. Students receive the engineering challenge and are given the materials they need to complete the activity. Each student is able to participate in the activity in pairs using teamwork and collaboration just like in the real world. This is a great opportunity for students to experience the engineering portion of STEAM. We have engineering activities for those as young as kindergarten. 

Our recommendation is a 3 hour minimum visit if you want to schedule a demo.

Kindergarten, First grade, Second grade

Build a flying contraption! Students are introduced to the engineering design process and are given the engineering design problem. With constraints of a time limit and limited materials, students must design a craft that will fly in the SciTech wind tunnel.

First grade, Second grade, Third grade

Build a floating contraption! Students are introduced to the engineering design process and are given the engineering design problem. With constraints of a time limit and limited materials, students must design a craft that will float while holding 12 jenga blocks. 

Fourth grade, fifth grade, sixth grade, seventh grade, eight grade

Build a bridge using the power of triangles! Students are introduced to the engineering design process and are given the engineering design problem. With constraints of a time limit and limited materials, students must design a 12 inch bridge that will hold 12 jenga blocks.

What Teachers Say:

Hands On Lab

Labs are 1-hour of time that is a mix of demonstrations and hands on activities.  With each class tailored to the standards, your students are coming away with an in depth knowledge of the topic of choice. This is a good choice if: you already talked about the subject in class and want to go into more depth; want to get them excited for bigger projects: science fairs, classroom projects, etc; or want to expose your students to a subject you don’t have the time or resources to cover in class.

Our recommendation is a 3.5 hour minimum visit if you want to schedule a lab.

Kindergarten, First grade, Second grade

 What is a simple machine? How are they useful? Where do we use simple machines in everyday life? These questions and more are explored in our Simple machines lab. Simple Machines are best experienced in person, so we have a variety of simple machines for kids to try. Pull it, twist it, push it, launch it! So many inventions that make life easier and more fun. Get ready for marshmallows to go flying!

Standards

Kindergarten

  • K-PS2-1. Plan and conduct an investigation to compare the effects of different strengths or different directions of pushes and pulls on the motion of an object.
  • K-PS2-2. Analyze data to determine if a design solution works as intended to change the speed or direction of an object with a push or a pull.

First grade, Second grade, Third grade 

What are the four states of matter? Can matter change the state it is in? With the demonstration portion of the class giving the information about matter, students will end the class trying 2 experiments for themselves. 

 

Standards:

Second grade

  • PS1-1:Plan and conduct an investigation to describe and classify different kinds of materials by their observables
  • PS1-2: Analyze data obtained from testing different materials to determine which materials have the properties that are best suited for the intended purpose. 
  • PS1-4: Construct an argument with evidence that some changes caused by heating or cooling can be reversed and some cannot.

First grade, Second grade, Third grade

What is pollination? Do all insects pollinate? Why is pollination important? These questions and more are explored in an interactive demonstration as well as hands on activities. Student will do 2 activities which explore the concept of plants needing pollination and the insects who help them do it!  

 

Standards:

Second grade

  • LS1-2: Develop a simple model that mimics the function of an animal pollinating plants

Third grade

  • LS1-1: Develop models to describe that organisms have unique and diverse life cycles but all have in common birth, growth, reproduction, and death.

 Third grade, fourth grade, fifth grade

How are magnets connected to electricity? What are conductors and insulators? What is the difference between an open and a closed circuit? These questions and more are explored in our Electricity and Magnets lab! Start with a demonstration about electricity and magnets, and end with hands on activities where students get to try what they have just learned. 

Standards

Third grade

  • PS2-3. Ask questions to determine cause and effect relationships of electric or magnetic interactions between two objects not in contact with each other.
  • PS2-4: Define a simple design problem that can be solved by applying scientific ideas about magnets

Fourth Grade

  • PS3-2: make observations to provide evidence that energy can be transferred from place to place by electricity
  • PS3-4: apply scientific ideas to design, test, and refine a device that converts energy from one form to another

Fourth grade, Fifth grade, Sixth grade, Seventh grade, Eighth grade

Who killed the big bad wolf? Using deductive reasoning and a variety of science experiments figure out who the guilty party is. Filled with full fledged crime scene, testing mystery substances, using blacklights, and more! Learn what it’s like to be a forensic scientist

Standards

Fourth Grade

  • LS1-1. Construct an argument that plants and animals have internal and external structures that function to support survival, growth, behavior, and reproduction.

Fifth Grade

  • PS1-3. Make observations and measurements to identify materials based on their properties.
  • PS1-4. Conduct an investigation to determine whether the mixing of two or more substances results in new substances
  • ETS1-2. Generate and compare multiple possible solutions to a problem based on how well each is likely to meet the criteria and constraints of the problem.
  • ETS1-3. Plan and carry out fair tests in which variables are controlled and failure points are considered to identify aspects of a model or prototype that can be improved

MS Grades

  • PS1-2. Analyze and interpret data on the properties of substances before and after the substances interact to determine if a chemical reaction has occurred.
  • PS4-2. Develop and use a model to describe that waves are reflected, absorbed, or transmitted through various materials

Fourth grade, Fifth grade, Sixth grade, Seventh grade, Eighth grade

What are the signs of different chemical reactions? What can a change in the Ph do? How do you build a battery? These questions and more are explored in our Radical reactions in chemistry lab. Start the class with demonstration of chemical reactions and get to do 2 experiments at the end. No science fair will be the same after students do these experiments!

Standards

Fourth Grade

  • PS3-2: make observations to provide evidence that energy can be transferred from place to place by sound, light, or heat.

Fifth grade

  • PS1-1: develop a model to describe that matter is made of particles too small to be seen
  • PS1-3: Make observations and measurements to identify materials based on their properties
  • PS1-4. Conduct an investigation to determine whether the mixing of two or more substances results in new substances.

Fourth grade, Fifth grade, Sixth grade, Seventh grade, Eighth grade

 

Can you recycle everything? Why is recycling important? These questions and more are explored in our recycling demo! Learn the various ways we reuse metals. Discover what it means to repurpose something. Walk away understanding the idea that recycling is a team effort, everyone needs to participate in order to make an impact. Labs stations explore topics about upcycling, environmental impacts, and what it means to be green. 

What Teachers Say:

Advanced Challenges

Advanced Challenges provide 1-hour of Hands On activity time. Give students the chance to do a big project in pairs. These activities are the advanced engineering challenges or dissections. Choose an activity tailored for the students age and watch them raise to the challenge.

Our recommendation is a 3.5 hour minimum visit if you want to schedule an advanced challenge.

First Grade, Second Grade, Third Grade

Do 2 engineering challenges; build a contraption that flies and another that floats! Students are introduced to the engineering design process and are given the engineering design problem. With constraints of a time limit and limited materials, students must design a craft that will fly and a different craft that will float.

Fourth grade, fifth grade, sixth grade, seventh grade, eight grade

Do 2 engineering challenges; Build contraption that floats and a bridge! Students are introduced to the engineering design process and are given the engineering design problem. With constraints of a time limit and limited materials, students must design a craft that floats while holding 12 jenga blocks and another that set be suspended while holding 12 jenga blocks.

Kindergarten, First grade, Second grade

This hour long advanced challenge is an activity with a dissection. Students will learn about food webs and predators in the first portion of the class. We get students up and moving in a predator-prey activity; and down in the guts with the owl pellet dissection. 

Standards

Kindergarten

  • LS1-1 Use observations to describe patterns of what plants and animals (including humans) need to survive
  • ESS3-1 Use a model to represent the relationship between the needs of different plants or animals (including humans) and the places they live

Second grade

  • Make observations of plants and animals to compare the diversity of life in different habitats

Third grade, Fourth grade, Fifth grade

Insects are the most diverse class of animals on the planet with over 1 million named species. Scientists estimate that there are millions more species to be classified. Preserved grasshoppers, from the order Orthoptera, are excellent specimens to explore basic insect anatomy. This dissection can be done as an introduction for students just learning about insect anatomy or used for comparative anatomy discussions in upper level high school and college courses.

Third grade, Fourth grade, Fifth grade

Crayfish belong to the Kingdom Animalia which includes all organisms that must consume their food (heterotrophs) and are multicellular. The crayfish belongs to the Phylum Arthropoda, which includes organisms that have an exoskeleton, jointed appendages and segmented bodies. This dissection can be done as an introduction for students just learning about anatomy or used for comparative anatomy discussions in upper level high school and college courses.

*** Field Trip Add-Ons ***

Subway Lunches

Lunches include a 6″ sub with chips, a cookie, and bottled water.  An order form will be included in your Field Trip Packet. Your order will need to be placed at least 2 weeks before your visit. Available for $6.75 per person.

Fox Motion Park

Available June – September, the Fox Motion Park features five, full-body physics experiences, binoculars to explore the flora and fauna of the Fox River, access to the Imagination Playground, and more. Available for $2.00 per person.

  • Field trips are available Tuesday through Friday between 9 am and 3 pm. The museum will open on Monday in some circumstances – call ahead to verify. Please fill out the registration form on our website and contact guestservices@scitechmuseum.org to inquire about availability. One-month advanced booking is recommended.
  • Groups must have a minimum of 15 participants (adults and children) to receive group pricing. Smaller groups may schedule programs at this minimum rate.
  • There is a mandatory ratio of 1 adult for every six students. Groups of 15 or more will receive one free adult admission for every 6 paying students. Additional adults pay the field trip rate. 
  • All payments are final. No refunds will be issued.
  • Group participants who have NOT paid in advance will be charged the field trip rate + $2.00 late fee.
  • Subway box lunches are available for an additional $6.75/person. Orders for boxed lunches must be done at least 2 weeks before your trip. Please indicate your interest on the registration form.
  • The Fox Motion Park is an rotation available for an additional $2.00/person. Available June – September, you may choose to add a 30-minute rotation to your field trip to visit the outdoor park. Please indicate your interest on the registration form.
  • Invoicing may take up to 2 weeks to process. At least two-month advanced booking is recommended. A booking fee may apply for last minute reservations.
  • Online reservations do not guarantee the requested date or program. If we can accommodate your reservation request, an invoice along with your Field Trip Information Packet will be sent to the email provided on the registration form. If we cannot accommodate your date request, we will contact you via phone and or email to select an alternative date.
  • Once you receive your invoice via email your reservation will be held for 30 days. Your reservation is not guaranteed until your deposit is paid.
  • All payments are final. No refunds will be issued.
  • Group participants who have NOT paid in advance will be charged the field trip rate + $2.00 late fee.
  • Deposits are non-refundable and due 14 days after the receipt of invoice. Deposits may be paid by check through the mail OR by credit card over the phone (630.859.3434×210).
  • The full balance for your trip is due 30 days before your trip date. If you need to change your date a rebooking fee may be applied.
  • If you need to lower your attendance numbers this must be done at least 30 days in advance and only be reduced by 10% of your original reservation. After 30 days, you are responsible for the full balance of your invoice. If you need to change your date a rebooking fee may be applied.
  • After your balance is paid you may add additional last-minute guests and pay for them upon arrival.
    • Group participants who have NOT paid in advance will be charged the field trip rate + $2.00 late fee.

    Please note; if 10 or more additional students are coming, you must notify the Guests Services Department (630.859.3434×216) as your group’s itinerary may need to be changed to accommodate all your activities.

  • All payments are final. SciTech does not offer refunds on field trips, programs, or purchased lunches. 
  • We require a 1:6 adult to child ratio on all field trips. Groups of 15 or more will receive one free adult admission for every 6 paying students. Additional adults pay the field trip rate when included in your registration.
  • Additional last-minute guests (adults and children) may be paid for upon arrival. Group participants who have NOT paid in advance will be charged the field trip rate + $2.00 late fee.
  • ALL chaperones MUST BE 18 years or older to qualify. “Chaperone” refers to teachers, parents, and camp counselors.
  • Failure to bring the required number of chaperones will result in additional staffing fees. $50 for groups of 15 or more and $25 for groups 14 and under.
  • Chaperones must stay with their assigned students throughout the field trip. This includes classroom time, exhibit exploration, and lunch time. If your group has requested a visit to our gift shop, chaperones must accompany their students. Gift Shop visitation must be scheduled before the field trip so your departure time will not be affected.
  • Please, no cell phone usage while chaperoning your students.
  • Please respect our staff during Labs or Demonstrations. Chaperones must remain in the classroom for the entire demonstration and/ or lab. It is disruptive to both the instructor and students when people enter and exit the room.
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