STEM/STEAM Field Trips

STEM/STEAM Field Trips

Lounging in front of classic Tom and Jerry while eating cereal from the box

That is a school holiday. And it’s really, really fun.

It is also necessary to have that kind of downtime. But what comes next? Boredom inevitably sets it. Facing 2 weeks of vacation, I am pulling together a list of ideas to be prepared.


Visit a power plant (check to see if they have a visitors center first):

© bobistraveling

We visited a local power plant. They had a science museum which covered the plant’s operation, plus experiments in energy/renewable energy and more.

Check out a science museum:

© Elliott Brown / Thinktank Birmingham Science Museum – Kids’ City

We have a playdate set up with a former classmate to a local science museum.


Trip to art-supply store to look at all the cool stuff:

© a loves dc

I posted about art supply stores a few weeks ago. Now that we have a little more time during a vacation, how about creating a specific project? There are many appealing projects hiding in the grownup supplies aisle:

Silkscreen kits: last year I picked up a full kit for about $19 on sale

Sculpey bakeable clay

Mod Podge

Pen and ink with nibbed pens

A visit to Home Depot©:


home depot
© Dean Hochman


Home Depot ideas:

Pick up some paint chips to plan a room makeover – even make believe

Buy some PVC or other cool STEM supplies

Try a piece of mosaic tile (I bought one that looked like bricks and snipped off the backing. It was better than blocks because it looked so “real.” Please be careful as some mosaic tiles have sharp edges.)


Local engineering sites of interest:

© Ben Harwood / Canal lock powerhouse

Visit nearby sites where engineering solutions can be seen: 

A hiking path under a soaring bridge. Look up and what do you see?

An old, hand-built stone fence

Abandoned (check for trains anyways please) train tracks

An old water mill


Stationery Something – either Staples, Wal-Mart, or arty local store (even Aisle 5 in the pharmacy will do)

© insatiablemunch


Pens. A fresh highlighter. A silly coloring book. Pieces of paper with clouds printed on them. A gold Sharpie®. Colored index cards. Then come home and get to work!


Bad weather? Feeling like a homebody? How about a field trip to the basement:

© Travis Wise
© Travis Wise

There it is. The box in the corner. The one marked “misc.” What could it be? Dig around and:

Wind up old baby toys.

Poke through great-grandma’s silverware

Examine useless kitchen gadgets bought on a whim, and try to re-purpose them into some kind of STEM machine

Wishing you a nice time with your kids.


STEM/STEAM Field Trips



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