Summer Catalog (Grades 4-8)

"4-8" represents the grade your student is entering for Fall 2018.

Summer 2019 registration will open in January 2019 


3... 2... 1... BLAST OFF!

Experiment with rocket design and propulsion systems. See how rocket design has changed over the decades. Build your own rocket and launch it to measure how high it goes! Maybe you'll become the next Dr. Goddard and lead the world into the next space frontier.  Additional purchase of an Estes Rocket kit ($15) at registration. 



Bugs, insects, spiders, crayfish, millipedes, centipedes, copepods... OK - there’s a lot of these!  In the air, water, soil and on the ground.  Find out how they live, swim, crawl, fly and fight, what behaviors they have, where to find them and how they make our biomes work!  Lots of collecting and studying some pretty cool characters!




From classic cels to the latest motion-capture systems, we'll show you how the pros work. You'll create original short animations using hand and computer tools, stop-action and "tweening" tools. You'll showcase your final masterpiece on a DVD and in our web gallery! 



Want to get under the hood of today’s electronics?  Build circuits that can be used to power gadgets, games, prosthetics and robots?  You’ll use an Arduino project board, LEDs, sensors, motors and all the parts you need to create cool stuff.  Additional purchase of a SparkFun Arduino kit ($49) at registration. 



Have you ever looked up at the night sky and wondered what's out there? Well, a multitude of objects are available to observe through telescopes of modest size, you just need to take the opportunity to do so. Join us to use telescopes to look at the Sun and planets, and all of the other wonders out there. Additional purchase of a GalileoScope telescope kit ($25) at registration. 



Learn about the chemistry and physics that keeps you being you, find out how bones, muscles and prosthetics work, 3D print skeleton parts, experiment with foods and exercise, and use some cool tech to check out your heart, lungs and muscles.  



Unleash your artistic side in computers - great graphics, powerful pictures, 3-D scenes, and fantastic scenes from out-of-this-world! You'll use the power of professional graphics tools to create a portfolio full of your original artwork and your own private gallery on the web! 



Explore the world of computer gaming by building your own! Work on one of several platforms and game tools to create original characters, stories and worlds. You'll end up with your own game to play and share with your friends. Yours could be the next Mario! 



Did you know that there are bobcats, bears, coyotes and six foot snakes in our own backyard? You don't have to go on safari to some far flung corner of the globe to learn about the world around you, because it's right here in all its splendor on Talcott Mountain! If you love the outdoors and want to know more about it, this is the course for you. (Remember, you may not see all of the wild animals mentioned above, but you might!) 



Join us as we delve into all facets of life science - from anatomy and physiology to medical research, from leaves and plants to frogs and ponds, your daily rhythms and your five senses, from exercise to sports medicine! 



Extract DNA, do DNA fingerprinting, see how bacteria can hurt and help, find out how family trees work, explore genome mapping, genetic medicines, and track your own genetic traits. 



There are hidden treasures waiting to be found tucked away in the mountains, forests, waterways, deserts, cities, or parks near you!  It's a high-tech hide-and-seek, a modern version of a scavenger hunt. Around the world, people have hidden small "caches" of items, and it is your job to find them! It's a great way to get outdoors and get some exercise in a fun and rewarding way. Learn about GPS, and create and find some caches. It's the game that makes you the search engine! 



How will the first adventurers to Mars or back to the Moon keep fresh food?  Hydroponics can create mini farms with no soil.  Learn the science behind plant nutrition, help cultivate crops in our garden tower and greenhouse, and make your own hydroponic station to take home!  Eat healthy thanks to space science, right in your own kitchen!



Girls Rock!  As in geology, and they can do a lot of other neat sciences too! Fun and challenging activities will stress investigation skills and build confidence in young female scientists. Experiment with chemistry, electricity, technology, life, earth and space sciences! 



How can the sun power your house? Your car?  Can you cook with sunshine? Find the answer to these questions and others as you switch on to solar, wind and water energy! Discover how electrons energize lamps, wires and motors as you build simple circuits and how to tap into nature for power!


INVENTIONS:  Camp Invention® "LAUNCH!" K-3 and 4-6

We're partnering again this summer with Camp Invention from the National Inventor's Hall of Fame (which includes a Talcott Alum!) This year you will take-apart, create, team up and brainstorm inventions and new ways to use things.  Activities include OptiBot™, Robotic Pet Vet™, Mod My Mini Mansion™, and Stick To It™.  The course includes all materials, and there is a K-3 strand and a 4-6 strand for the week. 


LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION! (a 2-week course)

Ever dream of being a TV producer, director, or star of your own production? Now is your chance to do it all! Explore the video medium and produce your masterpiece using the Science Center's production studio, editing and post-production equipment.  iPads and iMacs allow you to have your own editing suite and post and take your movies home!  



3-D printers have opened up a world of do-it-yourself design and manufacturing, from game pieces to prosthetic arms.  Using tools including Sculptris, SketchUp and MakerWare, you’ll be able to design, build and print your gadgets and 3-D models! 



Discover the lure of the ocean - the weather, animals and plants, the secrets to navigation, the amazing creatures of the deep, how we explore "inner space" with salt tanks and live specimens to observe and collect.  Includes a day trip to Hammonasset State Park for field work! 



Learn how to build, 3D print a case for it, and program your own Raspberry Pi 3 computer.  It runs “Raspbian” Linux, complete with a desktop interface, USB ports, HDMI to your big screen TV, Java, Wolfram Mathematica, GIMP graphics software and Minecraft!  Additional merchandise purchase ($35) at registration for the computer board.  



Let your mind go with LEGO Mindstorms EV3. We'll show you how to build and program the latest from LEGO. You'll work with a team in contests and challenges designed to test your skills. Get thinking outside the 'bot to make new robotics creations and contraptions! 


ROBOTICS:  VEX for 4-8


Step up to larger scale, metal-chassis robots under radio or programmed control, to create rugged robotic rovers, soccer champs, maze masters and firefighters. Hone your programming skills in VEX's C-like programming language and professional-level tools. 



Engineer and build with a chain reaction contraptions made with a wide variety of supplies.  Create a fun complex contraption to do a simple task, and use a lot of physics and engineering along the way. 



Find out how scientists take on the role of detective - finding clues that can be supported with evidence, using technology to uncover secrets, and how they can help solve crimes!  There will be hands-on investigations and puzzles, teamwork and sleuthing galore! 



Discover the science behind some great tricks and some cool science that can fool your friends! Use high tech and the web to learn some amazing illusions, plus free admission to our semi-annual Magic Show! Have a great time perfecting your magic tricks and science experiments. Conjure up wondrous illusions, feats of prestidigitation, and legerdemain. 



Want to forecast the weather? Use computers to access current information and images, look back at Earth from the GOES satellite and use live Doppler radar just like the experts! You’ll make green-screen weather forecast videos just like the pros, and use high-tech probes and monitors.  You will build your own weather instruments, then take them home to watch the weather!