Play Labs

Let's Do Science Together!


We love experimenting, learning, and creating together! Bring your group of early learners and their families to OMSI for a Play Lab!

OMSI Play Labs explore early math and science concepts with children ages 0-6 years old and their families. This free program focuses on partnering with community organizations to reach audiences underserved by traditional STEAM education. Each participating family is invited to visit the museum for the day, learn together in a Play Lab session, and take home an OMSI Family Membership so they can return again another day.

We hope you’ll come experiment with color, engage with live insects, build amazing structures, alongside our stellar educators!

Available Play Labs

Choose one of our four different Play Lab classes focused on STEAM learning. Each Play Lab begins with a family meet and greet and a read-aloud. The lab includes whole group and hands-on science activities to do with your littlest learners!

I am a Scientist

How do scientists explore the world around them? Students begin their journey into the world of scientific investigation. Let’s test out ideas, make observations, and explore chemical reactions together!

Be a Naturalist

Explore the natural world and the clues that animals leave behind. Families will meet insects and practice skills like categorization and observations.

Math is Fun

Math is fun! Explore counting, patterns, and shapes through art. Playfully explore and build early math skills with curiosity, imagination, inventiveness, and persistence.

Let’s Build

What can we build to solve a problem? Students will explore solutions, problem-solving, and stretch their engineering process skills.

Program Details

What’s Included

The program includes a 90-minute hands-on experience, all day general museum admission, free parking, and an annual OMSI Family Membership for participating families.

Bilingual Program

Play Labs are offered in English, Spanish, or a combination of the two. All program materials are also available in English and Spanish.



Family Learning

Play Labs are designed for children ages 0-6 and their families. Older siblings are welcome to participate. Each Play Lab can accommodate up to 20 participants. Please inquire about booking multiple sessions for larger groups.


Play Labs are generally offered twice daily on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. Please inquire about additional availability.

  • Morning Session: 10 am-11:30 am
  • Afternoon Session: 3 pm- 4:30 pm




Program Fee

Thanks to generous support from our sponsors, Play Labs are available free of charge for qualifying school and community groups that serve audiences traditionally underserved by STEM education.

Reserve Now!

Book at least three weeks in advance.

To book via phone, please call:

(503) 797-4661

To book via email, please email:

Resources for Families

Get ready for your upcoming Play Lab! We’re so excited for you to join us! Explore our resources for families to learn more about what to expect on the day of your Play Lab.

Thank You to Our Sponsors

Play Labs are made possible with support from our partners. Thank you for being a part of our mission to inspire curiosity through engaging science learning experiences, foster experimentation and the exchange of ideas, and stimulate informed action.