The Diverse World of Animals
(Grades K, 2-5) Students will engage in a classification activity in on of the museum’s classrooms. Models, replicas and pictures of animals native to our state will help students recognize common traits. A visit to the South Carolina Habitats exhibit will allow them to see the habitat of each animal classified and to complete a hands-on exercise.Standards: K-2.1; 2-2.1, 2-2.2, 2-2.3; 3-1.1; 3-2.2, 3-2.3; 4-2.1, 4-2.2; 5-3.1
Earth Day (Grades 2-8) Students will learn why it is important to celebrate Earth Day. We will briefly discuss the history of Earth Day. An activity will help students show their friends that they love the Earth and care what happens to this planet. Students will leave with tips on how they can help protect Earth for future generations.
(Grades 2, 3, 5, 7) Take a tour through the Museum’s natural history area to see how plants and animals survive in their natural habitats. See where animals in your own backyard stand on the food chain and how the life cycle of nature perpetuates. (Limited to 30 students).
Standards: 2-2.1, 2-2.3, 2-2.4; 3-2.1, 3-2.3, 3-2.4; 5-2.1, 5-2.3, 5-2.4, 5-2.5; 7-4.1, 7-4.2, 7-4.4, 7-4.5; B-3.6, B-6.1, B-6.3, B-6.5
Getting Around: Transportation in the Palmetto State
(Grades K, 1, 3, 5) Students will learn about the history of transportation in South Carolina. How did Native Americans travel from one location to another? What is the significance of our river systems, canals and railways?Standards: K-4.2; 1-4.1; 3-5.6; 5-3.1; 5-4.1
Herbarium and Plant Classification
(grades 3-12) The A. C. Moore Herbarium is an important part of the Department of Biological Sciences at the University of South Carolina. Founded in 1907 by Dr. Andrew Charles Moore, the original collection of dried plant specimens is now part of an ever growing collection. Total holdings are just over 100,000 specimens, making the A. C. Moore Herbarium the largest in the state of South Carolina. A guest researcher will explain the value of herbariums and students will have an opportunity to identify plant leaves.
(Grades 2, 3, 5-7, 9-12) We could not go a day without chemistry. Chemicals are used to purify drinking, make soaps and detergents, and as an ingredient in common household cleaners such as bleach, ammonia, and abrasive powders. Hands-on experiments will assist in learning about mixtures and solutions, and proper handling of household chemicals.Standards: 2-4.1; 2-4.2; 2-4.4; 3-4.1; 3-4.2; 5-4.3; 6-5.6; 7-5.2; 7-5.4; 7-5.5; 7-5.6; 7-5.10; PS-4.6; PS-4.8; C-6.5; C-6.6; C-6.7
Lights and Lasers
(Grades 4-12) In the Science Theatre, students will be introduced to laser technology, see how lasers work and learn how lasers impact our lives. Explore how the tools on satellites orbiting planetary bodies use all wavelengths of the electromagnetic spectrum. Find out what scientists hope to learn about the moon’s shadowy areas using ultraviolet wavelengths.
Living Small: Microscopes
This introductory class will familiarize young scientists with the use of a microscope. We will learn how a microscope works, how to use the important parts, and how to properly take care of them. The students will practice focusing with prepared slides. At the end of our lesson we will make our own slides.
This class is limited to 10 students. Each student will have a microscope and a set of glass slides to work with. Due to the techniques involved and the use of glass slides with sharp edges all participating students have to be 10 or older. Younger students are invited to sign up for Sticks & Stones Make Animal Homes offered at the same time.
Make Your Own Gorget (Grades 1-6) The gorget appears as a symbol on our state flag as well as on the hats of South Carolina Revolutionary War soldiers. Decorated sea shell gorgets were worn by Native Americans. Presented by the South Carolina Archaeology Public Outreach Division, this activity is designed to help students express themselves through visual symbolism. Each student will use air-drying clay to make a clay gorget to take home that says something about them. ($3 activity fee per person)
March of the Stars (Grades 3-8) We see the stars march across the night sky in the spring, but what do we really know about stars? How many stars can you name? What are stars anyway? Students will explore the stars in the night skies of March, learn basic information about stars and how to identify and locate some of the prominent stars in the spring sky. An optional, take home assignment to help students continue their study of the Stars of March will be provided. ($3 fee per person)
Maya Astronomy: Legends and Facts
(Starlab Fee $3 per person)
(grades 3-12) Maya astronomers predicted that the world would end on December 21, 2012. What did they see in the night sky and what will the sky look like tonight?
Maya Puppet Theater (Grades 3 -5) Homeschool families participate in a group theater project about Maya culture. Learn about Maya gods and traditions. Students (grades 3-5) operate puppets and speak dialog while family members (younger and older students and teachers) participate as townspeople who need to save a corn crop from an unrelenting drought.
Mitchelville: Dawn of Freedom (grades 3, 4 and 8) Students travel on a mini bus to USC’s McKissick Museum with JoAnn Zeise curator of an exhibit about Mitchelville one of the first towns founded by freedmen. The cultural heritage of formerly enslaved Sea Islanders as they made freedom a reality is examined. The foundation of Mitchelville, the lives of its residents, and its legacy are explained with folk and fine art, historic artifacts and objects recovered on archeological excavations of Mitchelville. Limited to 10 people.
Native American Mythology
(StarLab program: $3 fee per person)
(Grades 2-6) See the night sky through the eyes of various Native American tribes— Navajo, Shoshoni, Cherokee, Hopi, and others— and learn how the stars ushered in the seasons and how they explained the various phenomena of nature.
Native Americans in the 1600’s
(Grades 3-5) Students learn about Native American culture at the point of European contact. Housing, clothing and foodways of the Catawba, Yamasee and Cherokee are compared. Students handle reproductions of Native American tools, grind corn and view reconstructed dwellings.Native Americans: The First South Carolinians
(Grades 4 & 8) Native American culture dominated what is now South Carolina for thousands of years before the arrival of Europeans. Hands-on activities will help students appreciate the similarities and differences between the Paleo, Archaic, Woodland and Mississippian Indians.
Natural History Tour
(Grades K-12) Earth has not always been the same, as we know it now. Our planet continues to undergo physical changes on land and among its lifeforms. Students will be introduced to various animals that have lived in South Carolina over millions of years during this tour of exhibits in our Natural History gallery.
(Grades 3-8) This tour features discussion, analysis and comparison of Mort Kunstler’s Civil War art work to representative works from some the Revolutionary War Gallery. How do artists interpret history? (limited to 24 students).
Optical Illusions (grades 2 -12) Do you believe what you see? The image you see results from a combination of light entering your eyes, the nature of light and your thoughts and experiences. So how do optical illusions fool our brain? Are they caused by our eyes, our brains, special effects or a combination of all? Come find out during this intriguing Science Theater program then study further in the museum’s Optical Illusions Gallery.
Palmetto State at War (Grades 3-4, 8) Life changed dramatically for most people during the Civil War. Thousands of men went off to war leaving women in charge of running businesses, farms and plantations.
Students will learn about the causes of the war, the Secession and the life of a Civil War soldier.
Pottery Refit (Grades 2-12) Presented by the South Carolina Archaeology Public Outreach Division, this activity is dsigned to help students learn about techniques archaeologists use in the lab. Students will decorate a small ceramic, then “accidentally” drop it…Oops! Using glue and the students puzzle power they assemble back their pot to take home. Materials fee: $3.00/person
Randolph Cemetery Tour
(Grade 3-12) Take a walking tour of historic Randolph Cemetery with history curator, JoAnn Zeise. Learn about many of the elite African Americans who are buried here and about cemetery restoration efforts. A mini bus will transport homeschool families. This tour is limited to 12 people. Students should be at the third grade level or higher. Wear comfortable shoes and dress for the weather. Signed permission slips are mandatory!
Readin’, ‘Ritin’ and Responsibilities!
(Grades K-2) What was it like to attend a one-room country school at the turn of the century? Students will attend “class” at the Berry School and learn about daily chores performed at school and at home. (Limited to 30 students).
Standards: K-1.1; K-1.2; 1-6.1; 2-2.4
The Revolutionary War in South Carolina
(grades 3-8) Students journey back to the end of South Carolina’s colonial history. Students will learn about key causes, people and battles of the American Revolution. From Sullivan’s Island to Cowpens, the American Revolution was the most unsettled period in South Carolina’s history.
Robert Smalls: The Life and Times of Congressman Robert Smalls
(Grades 3 and 8) On May 13, 1862, Robert Smalls a 23-year old enslaved man stole a Confederate ship from under the noses of Charleston Harbor guards and steamed his way to freedom. Smalls fought with the Union troops and when the war ended, began a career which included serving five terms in the US Congress and two terms in the SC legislature. Robert Smalls left an indelible legacy of bravery, leadership and public service for all Americans. Standards: 3-4.4; 8-4.5
(StarLab program: $3 fee per person. Free for one primary teacher per home school family.)
(Grades K-2, 4, 8) Learn about the reasons for the seasons: Students look at the earth’s spin, axis, distance from the sun, rotation and revolution, and how the sun affects the earth. Students may also be introduced to the Chinese seasons, as well as the solstices and equinoxes.Standards: K-4.1, K-4.2, K-4.3; 1-3.3, 1-5.4; 2-3.3; 4-3.4, 4-3.5, 4-3.7; 8-4.4, 8-4.5
Secrets of the Maya ($5 fee for student and adult. Free for one primary teacher per Homeschool family.)
(Grade K-12) Unearth the mysteries of Maya civilization from 2000 BC to present. More than 100 magnificent artifacts help tell the story of an ancient yet advanced culture that created a 365 day calendar, a base 20 numbering system and a scheme of hieroglyphics to record important dates. This is a self-guided tour. Download a copy of In Search of Secrets of the Maya and bring it to the museum with a clipboard and pencil. Students will answer standards-based question about the Maya.
The Solar System
(Grades 4, 8) Students will explore the solar system in this Science Theater presentation. Exploration is enhanced with computer imaging and interactive activities.
Science and Technology Tour
(Grades 1-12) Students will tour a variety of science and technology exhibits with a museum educator.
(Grades K-12) What do we know about the seashells we find on the Carolina shore? We admire their beauty but let’s study the science behind shell formation? Where do seashells come from? What are the habitat requirements for marine mollusks? How do they live and survive in their environment? In a hands-on approach students will examine and classify a variety of seashells that can be found at our coast.
Sticks & Stones Make Animal Homes
(Grades K-2) Where to animals live? How do they find shelter and safety from predators? Students will learn about how animals decide where to live and then build a home for Mrs. Squirrel.
Take Charge: Electricity
(Grades 3-12) Learn about the origins of electricity and discover how it improves our lives. Students also will have a few (safe) hair-raising experiences in Science Theatre.
Umbrellas or Snowshoes: The Weather Around Us (Grades K-3) Students learn about clouds and various forms of precipitation. They will perform a hands-on activity using thermometers and create cloud forms using cotton balls and glue.
Weather (Grades 6-12) Students will learn about Earth’s atmospheric circulation patterns, including location of wind systems, jet streams, and high and low air pressure masses. They also will explore storm and pressure systems, longitude and latitude coordinate plotting and other global weather phenomena. (limited to 30 students) StarLab fee $3 per person
The Wonderful Sky (Grade 1) In Science Theater, Young students will be introduced to the sun, moon and planets through live demonstrations and hands-on activities.