Programs & Classes

Pre and post visit lesson plans are available.


New Interactive Educator Led Programs

Our educator led, interactive, full dome programs utilize Uniview, a visualization and simulation software aimed at presenting and teaching astronomy, astrophysics and earth sciences. Our full dome theater is a large-scale immersive environment, featuring realtime digital planetarium, and large-format cinema.

Junior Jetsetters
30 minutes, grades pre-k – 2
The night sky is what led humans long ago to wonder what is beyond Earth. Spark your students’ curiosity with an introduction to astronomy. Students will look at constellations, hear stories, and practice being an astronaut all while learning basic astronomy vocabulary.
Pair with museum classes: Living In Space, Lunar Explorers.

Rocky Planets
50 minutes, all grade levels
Tour the inner rocky planets of the Solar System! Ever wonder which is the hottest planet? Or how we know there once was water on Mars? Or even how the planets look from space? In this class students will learn all about the rocky inner planets of our solar system, fly through space themselves, and put their knowledge to the test!
Pair with museum classes: Living In Space, Force and Motion, Eyes on Earth.

Gas Giants
50 minutes, all grade levels
Tour the outer gas planets of the Solar System! Find out what makes the universe go round, what Uranus was supposed to be called, and once and for all, see why Pluto is NOT a planet! In this class students will learn all about the gas giants of our solar system, fly through space themselves, and put their knowledge to the test!
Pair with museum classes: Living In Space, Force and Motion, Eyes on Earth.

Asteroids, Comets, and Meteors
50 minutes, grades 3 – 12
While space is vast it is not empty, there is much more to it than planets. In this class, students will learn about some of the other objects in the Universe. They will get to be Near Earth asteroids, see where comets come from, and find out what killed the dinosaurs.
Pair with museum classes: Living In Space, Rockets Away.

Solar System Tour
50 minutes, all grade levels
Our Solar System has everything you could want! Planets! Moons! Asteroids! And Comets! All swirling around our one and only star, the Sun. Students will learn all the different objects that populate the Solar System and feel the force that keeps worlds spinning.  The Solar System Tour offers a sampling of Rocky Planets, Gas Giants, and Asteroids, Comets, and Meteors classes.
Pair with museum classes: Living In Space, Force and Motion, Eyes on Earth, Rockets Away.

To the Moon!
50 minutes, grades 1 – 8
The Moon is the only other place in space where people have walked on the surface.  In this class students will learn all about the moon; how it was formed, its phases, why it is full of craters, and the important role Long Island played in sending people there.
Pair with museum classes: Living In Space, Force and Motion.

Current Night Sky
50 minutes, all grade levels, Boy & Girl Scouts
Long before television, GPS, and street lights there were the stars of the night sky. Students will travel through the seasonal night sky to learn about constellations, hear mythical stories, and observe the magnificent Long Island sky.
Pair with museum class: Living In Space.

School Group Classes

NEW - Lunar Explorers
30 minutes, grades pre-k - 1
In this class, students will learn about the Moon, its orbit, and even surface craters! Through hands-on activities students will explore colors, shapes, and numbers to learn the basic features of our neighbor – the Moon!

NEW - Tech…Under Construction
30 minutes, grades 4-8
Throughout the technology industry change is happening every day. For students to become a part of this revolution they will need to understand how technology works…"under the hood." Using hands-on activities, students will learn the components of the technology industry from hydraulics to circuits uncovering the essentials to constructing robotics, rovers, drones, and more!

Bot Building
50 minutes, grades 4-9
Robotics play an integral role in engineering our futures. From factories to outer space, robots contribute to our society every day, performing jobs people may not be capable of doing. But who builds and creates these “intelligent” machines? Using Lego® NXT Robotics Kits, student teams will be introduced to robotics in an exciting hands-on format, learning the engineering design process and exploring what it is like to be an engineer!

Invisible Light
50 minutes, grades 3-12
Students will learn that in astronomy it is important to make observations over a broad range of energies because different wavelengths of the electromagnetic spectrum will give us different pieces of information. Through group experimentation, with specialized activities at different workstations, students will discover that invisible light is as real as visible light!

Physics of Toys
30 minutes, grades 2-9
Yo-yos, balloons, and slinkies may be found in any kid's closet, but they probably don’t realize that they can learn science from them. Students will use common toys to explore inertia, kinetic energy, laws of motion, and many more physics principles in this fun hands-on class.

Eyes on Earth
30 minutes, grades 4-12
Earth has warmed by about 1ºF over the past 100 years. But why? And how? Well, the Earth could be getting warmer naturally, but many of the world's leading climate scientists think that people are to blame. In this interactive class students will look at several elements that can contribute to climate change along with NASA technology that surveys our Earths changes.

30 minutes, grades 2-8
You might be familiar with androids in Star Wars, Star Trek or even the Terminator. However, modeling and engineering robots after humans in the real world is extremely challenging because of the complex systems humans use to do tasks. Using hands-on activities students will compare and determine the essentials needed to engineer a robot like a human while creating excitement about science, technology, and engineering.

Living in Space
30 minutes, All grade levels
There are many things one needs to know before venturing up into space…like how does one go to the bathroom? The most common and practical questions will be answered on what life is like in space. Students will discover where to sleep, what kind of food is available, what astronauts wear and what some hazards are. Students will even get to try on a space suit!

30 minutes grades 1-3
3000 years ago the Chinese invented kites and today most of us have attempted to fly one. Learn how kites were precursors to airplanes and build your own kite.

Force and Motion
30 minutes, grades 4-12
Experience Isaac Newton in a whole new way! Students will pull, knock and twist their way into a better understanding of Newton’s laws of motion through fun, engaging experiments. They will not only have a better appreciation for his laws, but students will never look at their world the same way again. Experiments include pulling a table cloth from under dishes and racing against other students in our Third Law Challenge!

Weather to Fly By
30 minutes, grades 3-8
What is something that each and every one of us including animals and plants has had to deal with everyday, all year long? Yes it is weather! Find out about basic weather patterns, where weather can be found, its effects on aircraft and the ingredients you need to conjure up some destructive forces!

Rockets Away!
30 minutes, grades 4-12
Rocketry is an important development in modern day science and technology. This program will guide students through historic milestones leading to some of the current uses of rockets. Demonstrations of basic rockets will be included.

Fly By Math
50 minutes, grades 4-9
This math program puts students’ skills to the ultimate test - can they safely direct air traffic? Recreating the intense atmosphere of air traffic control centers, it’s up to the students to see if they need to change the plane’s direction or speed by putting their math skills to use in these real world situations.

How Does It Fly?
30 minutes program, Grades 1-8
What are lift, thrust and drag? These are just a few of the concepts explored in this program that features hands-on demonstrations covering the history of air travel. Explanations of how flight is accomplished will provide insight into the scientific principles of flight.

Guided Tour: Highlights of Long Island Aviation
50 minutes, All grade levels
From ballooning to the Moon…an evolution of aviation, all in under an hour. This museum educator-led program will take your group through the museum’s collections focusing upon major events and aircraft in aviation history. Inquiry based learning will help students interpret the history of aviation on Long Island according to the age level and needs of each group.

All classes comply with National and State common core standards.

Aerospace Quests
To enhance your visit to the Cradle of Aviation be sure to print out an aerospace quest and make copies for your students to bring to the museum. This educational tool was developed by the museum staff and docents in order to help groups focus and have fun learning.