• Field Trip

    More than 250 interactive science, technology, energy and health exhibits await students of all ages.  We’re experts at making sure that bringing your group to the Museum is smooth sailing all the way. Discounted admission for groups of 20 or more!

  • ScienceWorks

    Your students become scientists during our ScienceWorks Labs. All programs align with National Science Education Standards, Next Generation Science Standards, Michigan Grade Level Content Expectations and Common Core State Standards. Labs are available year-round for preschool to middle school students and are led by an instructor.

  • Outreach

    It's Science on Wheels: We bring the Museum to you!  We offer fun, inquiry-based programs for the students in your classroom, library, festival or youth center! All programs address objectives outlined in the Michigan Grade Level Content Expectations and include pre- and post-visit activities.

  • Distance Learning

    Our educators use videoconferencing to engage your students in a dynamic, hands-on learning experience. Program kits sent to classroom teachers include nearly everything you need for experiments. Kits are yours to keep! All programs address National Science Education Standards and align with Michigan Grade Level Content Expectations.

  • Teacher Workshops

    Join us for fast-paced, hands-on teacher workshops that provide elementary and middle school educators with new hands-on tools for incorporating interactive science and math activities into your classroom.  Join us for professional development opportunities both at the museum and at your school.

  • Scouts

    The best place for Scouts to explore STEAM! 

  • Summer Camp

    Through the Unity in Learning partnership, Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum, Leslie Science & Nature Center, and Yankee Air Museum now offer families incredible day camps at two fantastic locations in Ann Arbor and Belleville.

  • Birthday Parties

    What do you get when you mix one part science, one part fun, and one part celebration? A birthday party at the Museum! Experience a birthday full of discovery by exploring more than 250 exhibits and experimenting with a hands-on activity. Celebrate in a unique and interactive environment to make your special day really special!

  • Evening Workshops

    Want to dive deeply into specific topics? Join us for an Evening Workshop! Explore a variety of science concepts through hands-on activities, interactive demos, and experiments in a small group setting. Topics vary from stop-motion animation to computer programming to engineering – there’s sure to be something that piques your interest!

Back to Programs

Premium Lab: Flying Toys (5th-8th)

Explore the science of flight by designing and creating flying toys. Participants will learn all about flying while making a variety of airborne toys.  Register today!

Cost: $5 per student

Premium labs are booked for a minimum of 15 students with a minimum price of $75.

Michigan Grade Level Content Expectations, Science v.1.09

  • Identify the force that pulls objects towards the Earth. (P.FM.03.22)
  • Demonstrate contact and non-contact forces to change motion of an object. (P.FM.05.22)
  • Describe what happens when two forces act on an object in the same or opposing directions (P.FM.05.31)
  • Describe how constant motion is the result of balanced (zero net) forces. (P.FM.05.32)
  • Describe how changes in the motion of objects are caused by a non-zero net (unbalanced) force. (P.FM.05.33)
  • Relate the size of change in motion to the strength of unbalanced forces and the mass of the object. (P.FM.05.34)

Next Generation Science Standards

Students participating in this program will explore science content as stated in the Disciplinary Core Ideas. They will engage in science and engineering practices as they plan and conduct investigations to answer questions regarding flying toys.

PS2.A: Forces and Motion

  • Pushes and pulls can have different strengths and directions.
  • Pushing or pulling on an object can change the speed or direction of its motion and can start or stop it.
  • Each force acts on one particular object and has both strength and a direction. An object at rest typically has multiple forces acting on it, but they add to give zero net force on the object. Forces that do not sum to zero can cause changes in the object’s speed or direction of motion. (Boundary: Qualitative and conceptual, but not quantitative addition of forces are used at this level.)

PS2.B: Types of Interactions

  • The gravitational force of Earth acting on an object near Earth’s surface pulls that object toward the planet’s center.

PS3.A: Definitions of Energy

  • The faster a given object is moving, the more energy it possesses.
  • Motion energy is properly called kinetic energy; it is proportional to the mass of the moving object.
  • A system of objects may also contain stored (potential) energy, depending on their relative positions.

PS3.C: Relationship Between Energy and Forces

  • A bigger push or pull makes things speed up or slow down more quickly.

ETS1.B: Developing Possible Solutions

  • Tests are often designed to identify failure points or difficulties, which suggest the elements of the design that need to be improved.
  • A solution needs to be tested, and then modified on the basis of the test results, in order to improve it.
  • Sometimes parts of different solutions can be combined to create a solution that is better than any of its predecessors.

ETS1.C: Optimizing the Design Solution

  • Different solutions need to be tested in order to determine which of them best solves the problem, given the criteria and the constraints.

Flying Toys Pre-Visit Information

During your visit to the ScienceWorks Lab students will be expected to:

  • Sit in tables of 6 students and (at least) 1 adult
  • Be prepared to give their attention to the Lab instructors when requested to “Give Me Five”
  • Work cooperatively with one another at the table
  • Follow the hands-on procedures just as the Lab teacher or assistant explains them
  • Handle materials and equipment carefully

It is important that teachers and chaperones:

  • Help focus the students’ attention
  • Assist students with the hands-on activities and experiments when necessary
  • Turn off cell phones and pagers during the class


Air Resistance: Drag created by air. Parachutes help to maximize air resistance. A plane’s shape aims to minimize air resistance.

Drag: Resistance to a motion of an object.

Gravity: The force that pulls toward the center of a body of mass. The earth’s gravity acting on your body gives you weight.

Lift: A force perpendicular to the movement of air over a plane’s wing.

Rotational Velocity: The rate of how fast an object spins.

Thrust: The force that propels an object forward. For instance, throwing a ball.

Velocity: The speed and direction of an object.

Premium Lab: Flying Toys (5th-8th)



50 minutes

3-5th, 6-8th

30, 60, 100

Earth and Space Sciences, Engineering, Physical Sciences

Still not sure we have the experience you want?

Visit unityinlearning.org to open a gateway to hands-on discovery, exploration of the natural world, and experiences that take flight.

Through the Unity in Learning partnership with the Ann Arbor Hands-On MuseumLeslie Science and Nature Center, and Yankee Air Museum we provide over 100 different  programs at our facilities, on site at your location, or through interactive video conferencing.