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STEM Online - Tour Museums, Watch Astronauts, and Create Experiments at Home!

Smithsonian Elephant

Missing science class?  Want to try experiments from home?  Longing to visit dinosaurs, rocket ships, and a tropical rainforest?  Check out these great virtual tours, activities, and live cams to keep you engaged with all things STEM!


SMITHSONIAN AIR AND SPACE MUSEUM
 

Smithsonian Air and Space Museum offers K-12 Learning resources with educational videos and experiments you can do at home.  Watch astronaut Mark Vande Hei play basketball in space, create a cool aerodynamic paper airplane, or three easy ways to view the stars without a telescope! 
 

Plus the museum has online exhibits - our favorite is Star Wars:  The Magic of Myth where you can see costumes, original art, and dive deep into the mythology behind the movie.

Star Wars C3PO


SMITHSONIAN MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY

Smithsonian Museum of Natural History is a family favorite.  It provides a 360 Degree virtual tours of current, past, and ongoing exhibits such as The Butterfly Pavillion where you can “walk” through rooms filled with tropical plants and live fluttering butterflies.  There you can explore how plants and butterflies have evolved in response to each other.  

Smithsonian Butterfly

At the The Hall of Fossils you will journey through time to the Earth’s beginnings, visiting fossils of plants and dinosaurs, exploring how life evolved as the world changed.  Or you can learn more about how insects are important to fossils of leaves.  

Smithsonian Fossils

They, too, have online resources for K-12 students with a full calendar of webinars like “How Birds Stay Warm,” and a searchable database of life science activities, guides, and worksheets for upper elementary through high school. 


NATIONAL MUSEUM OF COMPUTING

If you are way into coding, check out The National Museum of Computing.   Located in Bletchley Park, UK, the museum houses the world's largest collection of functional historic computers, including the rebuilt Colossus, the world’s first electronic computer, and the WITCH, the world's oldest working digital computer. 

Turing-Welchman Bombe

They also offer a 3-D virtual tour that includes the Turing-Welchman Bombe machine used to break Germany’s Enigma machine in WWII.


THE NATIONAL AQUARIUM

The National Aquarium offers teacher workbooks for elementary, middle, and high school on such subjects as our local resource, the Chesapeake Bay; and for older kids, a guide to dissecting a squid!

National Aquarium Sharks

The aquarium provides a 360 degree virtual tour that explores the Atlantic and Pacific coral reefs in beautiful detail.  You can visit a a tropical rainforest and the very popular Shark Alley .  Plus the Aquarium has live cams of sharks, jellyfish, and living reefs.


Keep up with local and global science news and activities with VPM’s Science Matters page - and sign up for the newsletter and follow us on Facebook to stay connected!  Virginia’s CTE Resource Center also has numerous at-home STEM resources for middle and high school students.