Catawba Science Center On The SALT Block • 243 3rd Avenue NE • PO Box 2431 • Hickory, NC 28603 • Phone: (828) 322-8169 • Fax: (828) 322-1585
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Program Guide

[ Field Trip and Program Guide 2014-2015 ]

Offerings at a glance

CSC programs feature grade-specific, hands-on experiences in natural, physical and earth sciences.

All programs complement the NC Standard Course of Study Science, Math and Language Arts curriculum goals, as listed below each description. All CSC programs are designed to further students’ understanding of the Nature of Science.

Classroom Programs

A field trip to Catawba Science Center is an exciting opportunity for groups to share interactive learning experiences. In addition to your chosen program, your group is free to explore the entire museum. Staff is located throughout CSC to enrich your group’s visit.

Length: 50 or 80 minutes (noted in description)
Group size: 30 students maximum per program
Available between 9 a.m. & 4 p.m., Tuesday - Friday
Classes begin on the hour, or half-hour only.

[ Click here for a listing of classroom programs for grades K – 8th ]

Outreach Programs

Instead of scheduling a field trip to CSC, we can bring some of the same exciting classroom programs to your site. Please note within each class description whether or not the program is offered as outreach.

Length: 50 or 80 minutes (noted in descriptions)
Group size: 30 students maximum per program.
Available between 8:30 a.m. & 3:30 p.m., Tuesday - Friday

High School programs

THE UNIVERSE – STARS (Grades 9-12): Dive deep into the science of space, star evolution and their characteristics, beginning with the digital film Stars: The Powerhouses of the Universe. The stuff of the universe will be put in front of a telescope.

Program available only at CSC.

Earth/Environmental Science Goals: EEn.1.1.2, EEn.1.1.3, EEn1.1.4

Assembly Programs

These programs will both educate and entertain large groups. Learn fascinating facts about live reptiles or observe exciting physical science demonstrations.

Length: 50 minutes
Group size: 200 students maximum per outreach program, 100 students maximum per program at CSC.
Available between 9 a.m. & 3:30 p.m., Tuesday - Friday

Planetarium Programs & Shows

The planetarium/digital theater brings the nighttime sky alive indoors. Programs are available for grades K-12, and focus on stars, the moon, planets and constellations. Groups can also choose to book a digital theater show, for the program fee.

Length: 50 minutes for programs, shows vary in length
Location: CSC
Available between 9 a.m. & 12 p.m., Tuesday - Friday
Group size: Planetarium programs can accommodate two classes at a time up to 65 participants. For programs, only groups from the same school will be combined. For digital theater shows, groups from different grades/schools may be combined. Programs held within the planetarium/digital dome theater will have limited seating. The number of chaperones admitted per group will vary depending on space.

Park Programs

Students, kindergarten through 8th grade, will use their science investigation skills to explore ecosystems that include wetlands, field, forest and/or stream. Located in northwest Hickory, Glenn Hilton Park affords great learning opportunities, picnic shelters and play areas.

The city of Hickory requires registration and a fee for groups from outside Catawba County to use picnic shelters. For more information about these guidelines, or to make a reservation, call Hickory City Parks at (828) 322-7046.

Length: 50 minutes to 1 hour, 20 minutes
(see description under grade level)
Location: Glenn Hilton Park
Group size: 30 students maximum per program.
Maximum 2 groups per time slot.
Available between 9 a.m. & 4 p.m., Tuesday - Friday;
August - October, and April - June

Museum Exploration Only
(No Program)

Self-guided explorations without programs are available to any group of 10 or more. A special group rate for this self-guided experience is $5 per student.
(CSC Membership benefits do not apply for students or chaperones.)

Preschool Programs

CSC preschool staff use puppets, puzzles, live animals and more to introduce science to your students. Programs are available on site and as outreach.

Cost: $90 per program, +mileage (contract for entire year available at varying rates)
Length: 45 minutes
Group size: 25 students maximum per program

Science Inquiry Festival: Science In Your World

Can you do the waggle dance? Do roaches really hiss? Discover the answers to these questions and many more when your school books a Science Inquiry Festival.

Each of the six stations features guided scientific investigations into environmental concerns that affect our earth, challenging students to hone their inquiry skills as they general hypotheses, make observations and interpret their findings.

Students will experiment with solar energy, make fascinating discoveries about solutions and mixtures, investigate the “mystery” of the dying fish, and much more in this exciting and popular outreach program.

You can book a school-day or evening festival (or multi-day event) at a low, per-student cost.

Grade Levels: K – 8th Grade
Length: up to 5 one-hour sessions per day, or one three-hour evening session
Cost: $450 first day or evening; $250 for a second day/evening option
Mileage: Current federal mileage rate applies. A per diem charge and hotel cost is added if overnight stay is required (typically applies to schools in counties outside of Catawba, Burke, Caldwell, Alexander, Lincoln and Iredell).
Available January 2013 – June 2013 only. Book early to reserve your date(s)!

Program Requirements: School must provide a gymnasium-sized room with access to water and electrical outlets, 12 tables and chairs, and a minimum of 12 adult or high-school volunteers to manage stations. Training is provided.

The Science Inquiry Festival complements the following NC Standard Course of Study goals for Science, Math and Language Arts: The Nature of Science; Science as Inquiry; Science and Technology; Science in Personal and Social Perspectives; Number Sense, Numeration, and Numerical Operations; Spatial Sense, Measurement, and Geometry; Patterns, Relationships and Functions; Data, Probability, and Statistics; Oral Language; and Written Language.

Family Science Nights For Your School

Looking for a fun and educational event for your school? CSC would love to host your students and their families for an exciting evening, featuring an after-hours visit of exhibits and planetarium programming, or a series of themed classes.

Call (828) 322-8169 for pricing and scheduling information.


PHYSICS PHUN (suggested upper elementary — middle school): See a variety of physical science demonstrations that appear magical and then learn the science behind them. Featured demos include tablecloth yank, Van de Graaff generator, giant lever and more.
Program requirements: two 6’ tables, access to electricity

ROCKIN’ REACTIONS (suggested upper elementary — middle school): Learn some basics of chemistry through these sometimes fiery demonstrations. Program includes liquid nitrogen favorites, exploding silo, elephant toothpaste and more.
Program requirements: one 6’ table

REALLY RAD REPTILES (elementary – middle school): Get up-close and personal with a variety of live animals as your students discover the fascinating world of reptiles. Find out which characteristics alligators, snakes, lizards and tortoises share with each other and other animals, along with what makes each unique.
Program requirement: at least one 6’ table

Programs available as Outreach or at CSC

[ Program and outreach fee schedule ]

[ Millholland Planetarium Offerings ]

[ Worksheet to download, print and plan your visit ]


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