About AfterSchool KidzScience

AfterSchool KidzScience™ kits are designed specifically for use in out-of-school settings by children in grades 3 - 5. Each kit includes four approximately 45-minute sessions. The four sessions in each kit build upon each other but stand alone to accommodate flexible attendance. Leaders need minimal time for preparation and cleanup and don’t need a background in science. The activities are engaging and easy to lead, excite children about science, build science knowledge and inquiry abilities, and help children learn important cooperation and teamwork skills. Each 45-minute session follows the same steps—"Engage," "Explore," and "Make Sense."

AfterSchool KidzScience™ was developed by the Lawrence Hall of Science (LHS) in close collaboration with the Center for the Collaborative Classroom (formerly known as Developmental Studies Center). This unique partnership brings together the deep expertise of LHS in effective, inquiry-based education and the broad experience of the Center for the Collaborative Classroom in developing and publishing afterschool and in-school programs that promote children's academic, ethical, and social development.

Download the AfterSchool KidzScience Overview for more information

Download a sample Session Guide

What's Included?

Each kit contains nearly all the materials you need to do the activities with a group of up to 20 children. Many of the items in the kit are reusable, and refill kits are available.

Each kit contains one guide for each session—four in a kit. Each guide includes an overview of the session, a materials list, preparation steps, illustrations, step-by-step instructions for the activity, questions, and other support for the leader. Each four-page guide is easy to reference while leading the sessions.

Each kit includes 16 question cards—four for each session. Question cards can be used in many ways to help engage children, extend learning, and connect children’s first-hand discoveries to the world of science and their everyday lives. With compelling pictures and interesting information, question cards help answer children’s questions and spark children’s interest.

The video clips on the DVD help leaders engage children in the activities with less stress, more fun, and deeper learning. Each video clip is under five minutes long and supports leaders in presenting the activities easily and effectively. You can also view the video clips online.

Each kit comes with a handbook that includes:

  • Session summaries
  • Science background information
  • Tips on how to manage the activities
  • A glossary of terms
  • Tips on using the kit materials
  • Extension activities
  • Ways to adapt the activities for younger and older children
  • A kit inventory list
  • A list of the National Science Education Standards addressed in the kit

Support For Science Afterschool

Out-of-school programs offer a great environment for inquiry-based science. These settings offer children the flexibility to explore and investigate freely and creatively. Science is a way of thinking and finding out about the world, not just a collection of facts. Through the AfterSchool KidzScience activities, children discover important science concepts that will support them in school and in life. We hope children leave AfterSchool KidzScience sessions thinking, "Science is cool and I can do it!" To learn more about doing science afterschool see What is Science? and How do people learn?.

AfterSchool KidzScience Workshops

AfterSchool KidzScience workshops introduce out-of-school leaders to the use of AfterSchool KidzScience kits. Special attention will be paid to techniques for fostering an inventive, creative, and safe approach to science after school. Please check back for dates and details. Already attended an AfterSchool KidzScience workshop? Check out the forum!