Educator Guide 2017-18

The Institute of Science offers over 80 field trip programs as well as special and permanent exhibits, planetarium shows, and seasonal events. Download our current Educator Guide to peruse our offerings at your leisure.

Grade Level: 7 8 9 10 11 12+
Cosmic Colors will take you on a wondrous journey across the entire electromagnetic spectrum in this immersive program in the Acheson Planetarium. Discover the many reasons for color — like why the sky is blue and why Mars is red. Take a tour within a plant leaf and journey inside the human eye. Investigate x-rays by voyaging to a monstrous black hole and then back at your doctor’s office. You will even see the actual color of a dinosaur – based on recent evidence. Get ready for an amazing adventure under a rainbow of cosmic light!

Grade Level: 8 9 10 11 12+
This intense, informative program is a look at the evolution of stars in general and the Sun in particular. From the turbulent cauldron of their birth through the multitude of cataclysmic ways they can meet their end, students will discover the many secrets stars hold. This is a partially live-narrated program.

Grade Level: 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 1 0 11 12+
The emphasis is on all-around sky viewing. Find the Big Dipper, North Star, planets and constellations in the current sky. Observe the apparent motion of the sky. Venture into interstellar space to explore our starry home – the Milky Way Galaxy – in stunning three-dimensions! Note: This partially live-narrated program is updated weekly to reflect the latest astronomical discoveries or topics of interest.

Grade Level: P K 1 2 3
Join Big Bird, Elmo and Hu Hu Zhu on an exciting discovery of the Sun, Moon and stars. Find the Big Dipper and the North Star. Take an imaginary trip that explores the differences between the Moon and Earth. Join them back on Earth to celebrate the idea that even though they live in different countries, they still share the same sky.

Grade Level: 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12+
This exciting live presentation demonstrates why the start of the seasons depends on your location on Earth as well as Earth’s position around the Sun. Observe the Sun’s altitude and daily motion from various latitudes. Discover why your favorite constellations aren’t visible every night. Could the seasons and the ever-changing sky at night be linked? Find out!

Grade Level: 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12+
Discover the reason for the seasons in this exciting live presentation! Learn why the start of the seasons depends on your location on Earth as well as Earth’s position around the Sun. Observe the Sun’s altitude and daily motion from various latitudes and visit Mars! Discover the phases of the Moon and uncover the mysteries of both solar and lunar eclipses.

Grade Level: K 1 2 3 4
What is the secret of the cardboard rocket? Two young adventurers turn an old cardboard box into a rocket and blast off on an awesome adventure to the most amazing places in the solar system! Join them as they visit the planets to learn what makes each one unique and what makes Earth such a special place to live. This program is available in either a 30 or 40–minute format. Specify your preferred length at time of registration.

Grade Level: 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12+
Explore the planets in our solar system, from their formation billions of years ago to the current robotic missions sent to unlock their secrets in this live presentation. Learn about the latest discoveries of comets, moons and icy bodies in the Kuiper Belt and beyond. See what the planets look like in the night sky and how they move along their orbits over time.

Grade Level: 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12+
Travel to ancient Egypt to see how astronomy was used to tell time and align huge buildings. Learn about the connection the ancient Egyptians felt with the stars and various astronomical phenomena and see some of the most spectacular temples and tombs of the ancient world recreated in their original splendor.

Grade Level: 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12+
Travel to the Isle of Crete where the legends of Zeus, Hercules, Orion, Perseus, Medusa and many others come alive in this live presentation. The Ancient Greeks and Romans may not have understood the nature of the stars, but they certainly had vivid imaginations as they created their mythological legends and stories looking at them.

Grade Level: 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12+
What’s the difference between climate and weather? Is Earth the only planet in our solar system that has varying climates and changing weather patterns? How does Earth’s climate and weather compare to other planets in our solar system? By studying and comparing Earth’s unique position within the solar system, we answer these and other climate and weather related questions. This is a live-narrated program.  

Grade Level: P K 1
Make the sky turn dark and sprinkle it with stars! Embark on an exciting and educational journey through the night sky viewing constellations and visiting the planets. This is a live-narrated program.

Plan Your Field Trip

Field trips play an important role for students and educators. A new learning environment provides the opportunity to build team and small group skills and engage students on an intellectual, social and physical level.

Anthropology and Social Sciences

What does it mean to be Human? Explore the Human experience across time and place.

Astronomy and Space Science

What’s out there? Space science takes us exploring in our own galaxy...and beyond!


What is matter? Join in the LEGO® fun and discover how atoms interact, combine and change!

Earth Science

Ever wonder what’s below the ground we see? From crust to core, Earth Science explores our home.


How do we solve problems? Engineering uses art, math, science and technology to design solutions.


Sit back, relax and have some fun! An array of regular and seasonal entertainment experiences are available in the Acheson Planetarium.

Life Science

What is biodiversity? Life science reveals the interconnectedness of all living things.

Physical Science

How does that work? Discover the science of the weather, physics, matter and electricity that surrounds us every day.

At Your School or On Screen

Cranbrook Institute of Science comes to you to host a field trip in your school year-round! Or through videoconferencing technology, we can bring high-quality science programs right into your classroom.