Fascinating Ways to Learn Out of the Classroom

Virtual Education Programs

  • Available Mon – Fri 11:00a.m. , 1:00p.m. , 3:00 p.m.
  • Cost: $165 for one hour for up to 45 students
  • Platform: Zoom; link and guidelines provided prior to session
Build Your World

Think you need concrete and steel to build bridges? Think again! Using the engineering design process, students explore the forces of motion and work in small groups to plan, test and build a way across a "river" using a simple material.  Will it hold up to an earthquake? What about a tornado? Student engineers investigate and evaluate. *Blocks will be provided on loan. Museum will arrange pickup and drop-off.   

     

  • Grades k-3
  • Science concepts: Forces, motion, and stability; observing and analyzing data, engineering design
Rocket Launch

Getting to space...it's just rocket science! Discover the laws of motion, and which parts of a rocket are built to propel, streamline, and stabilize. Design and test your own simple spacecraft, then launch it skyward or toward a target. Does it hit the mark? Redesign and improve to get to the moon. Additional charge of *$15 per student for rocket kit.

 

  • Grades k-12
  • Science concepts: Energy transfer, forces and motion, engineering design

 

Animal Adaptations

What structures and behaviors do animals exhibit that help them survive? Compare the adaptations of a live animal to the observed adaptations of biofacts such as bones and animal pelts. Draw conclusions about how structure and function influence evolutionary success.

  • Grades: 2-8
  • Science Concepts and Behaviors: Animal Adaptations, Biological Evolution, Examining Structure and Function
  • Option for younger audiences – Touchable Tales
Solve it with STEM

Engineer solutions to real-world problems found in your backyard and across the globe.Choose between Designing, building, testing, and improving a model race car, or turning a soda can into a robot! *Additional charge of $20 per student for science kits.

  • Grades: 3-8
  • Science Concepts and Behaviors: Engineering design, forces and motion
Understanding Weather

Why does the weather change from day to day and season to season? How are weather and climate different? What variables affect the weather? Experience the forces driving weather through interactive demonstrations, careful observation, and scientific analysis.

  • Grades 2-8
  • Science Concepts and Behaviors: Earth’s Systems, Matter and Its Interactions, Observing and Analyzing Data
Invisible Forces

What causes static electricity? What makes a magnet? How is lightning formed? Why do the lights go on and off with the flick of a switch? How is current electricity generated? Are magnetic and electrical forces related? Explore the answers to these questions, and more, through hands-on demonstrations and interactive experiments.

  • Grades: 3-8
  • Science Concepts and Behaviors: Forces and Motion, Forms of Energy, Matter and Its Interactions, Observing and Analyzing Data

Naturalist Program The Naturalist Program is a new educational initiative geared toward rising ninth graders in Worcester interested in learning about natural science, careers in STEM, or museum work.


Watch On YouTube:  Naturalist Program at the EcoTarium


This three-year, cumulative program will follow the schedule of the school year and will include hands-on, interactive activities, projects, and exploration of the museum’s collection. Though this particular iteration of the program is new, this is not the first time there has been a Naturalist Program at the EcoTarium. The former participants from years ago – now adults – have spoken fondly of finally finding a space where they felt they belonged.

The first two years of our refreshed Naturalist Program focus on New England Ecology and STEM careers, featuring units on owls, reptiles, birds of prey, freshwater fish, amphibians and more.

Register for Free

Jake, the EcoTarium's Naturalist Program Coordinator, shares about the revival of this exciting program in our latest blog titled, "Amateur Science That is Anything But Amateur"

Read Now

Virtual Animal Encounters

  • Available Mon – Fri 11:00a.m. , 1:00p.m. , 3:00 p.m.
  • Cost: $125 for one hour for up to 45 students
  • Platform: Zoom; link and guidelines provided prior to session
Red Fox
  • $125 per hour for up to 45 students
  • Grades: K-12

This program features our resident fox, Socks. Wildlife keepers will highlight why wild animals do not make good pets and what you should do if you ever find an injured or baby animal in your own backyard. You will learn about the natural history of red foxes and the special adaptations they possess which make them suitable for the New England climate. You will also watch a positive reinforcement training session with “Socks” and learn about how training helps animals under human care participate in their own medical care!

North American River Otters
  • $125 per hour for up to 45 students
  • Grades: K-12

This program features our two resident North American river otters, Slydell and Daisy. Wildlife keepers will highlight the threats that all 13 species of otters are facing and how these threats are leading to endangerment and extinction of otters around the globe. You will learn about the incredible adaptations of river otters and why they are an environmental indicator species. You will get to watch a positive reinforcement training session with both otters and learn about what river otters eat in their natural environment and here at the EcoTarium!

Mountain Lions
  • $125 per hour for up to 45 students
  • Grades: K-12

This program features our two resident mountain lion siblings, Salton and Freyja. Wildlife keepers will tell the story of how Salton and Freyja came to reside at the EcoTarium. You will learn about the former expansive range of mountain lions and why they are no longer found in New England today. You will learn about the current threats that mountain lions are facing daily but how their ability to thrive in different habitats have helped them to adapt and survive. You will get to watch a positive reinforcement training session and learn about what it takes to care for our sibling mountain lions! 

Educational content, activities and creative projects can be found: At Home Resources


  • Please send requests at least 1 week in advance of the requested date/s. Subject to availability. 
  • Group Leader/Main contact will provide a platform link to the museum prior to the meeting.
  • If a group is unable to provide the link, we can provide the link (if we provide the link, program capacity will be capped at 75 total attendees).
  • A confirmation of your reservation will be sent upon receipt of your full payment. Your reservation cannot be confirmed without payment.
  • Payments may be paid by check or credit card. Blackout dates may apply for certain programs. 
  • Administrative charges may be assessed for special requests. All fees are non-refundable.