What do a portable planetarium, an inflatable whale, and a bearded dragon have in common? They all hit the road to bring OMSI fun to schools across the region.
In the wee hours of the morning, long before the sun comes up, you can find OMSI educators loading live snakes, exploding chemistry kits and life-size inflatable whales into vans bound for far-off classrooms and gymnasiums. It’s all in a day’s work for our statewide outreach team.
“We’ve heard in the past from multiple places, ‘it’s too far, we can’t go,’” says Carolyn, a K-8 teacher at Frenchglen Elementary in rural Harney County, Oregon. “But OMSI will come.”
Our team drives hundreds of miles not only across Oregon but as far as Washington, Idaho, Montana and California. The trips may be long, but they’re worth it to create opportunities for students to experience science in a way that may not be available in their local communities.
“It’s really important because you never know where the next great answer is going to come from,” says OMSI educator Ashley. “A kid either in the city or out in the rural areas could really change the world.”
We hit the road to reach groups big and small — from a tiny class in a one-room schoolhouse to a 400-person assembly in a school gym. No matter how many kids we’re working with, our goal is to deliver the joy, excitement and wonderful weirdness of science the way only OMSI can.
“One of the things [students] take back with them is they look at things with questions in their minds. How does that work, and what if I did this, and what if I tried that?” says Frenchglen Elementary teacher Carolyn. “They’re excited to do science. They embrace it, and they’re not afraid of it. That’s a huge, huge thing.”
OMSI Around the Region
To find out how you can bring OMSI to your school, check out over 60 experiences available through our school and community programs.
Check out when we’re coming to town!
Every year OMSI travels throughout the Pacific Northwest. Book during one of our pre-scheduled trips and save on travel fees.