Explore our offerings for libraries, museums, schools
& community venues.

Below you'll find a running list of programs we have to offer. Follow the links to learn more about each program. If you have an idea or request for a program please feel free to Contact us. We could Partner together to make a fantastic learning experience!


Automata: Machines Mimicking Life

Introduction to the nearly lost history, art, and science behind clockwork toys that mimic animal and human life. Learn the basic mechanisms of vintage automata, trace their evolution from the renaissance to the digital era, and have hands-on time exploring and analyzing rare automata models.  Learn More →

Geology & The Rock Cycle

Baron von Vaderstein of Prussia is building a ship that will allow him to burrow into the Earth's crust and collect samples of every type of rock and learn about the layers of the lithosphere. It's up to Her Majesty's Extraordinary Adventurers to beat him to the punch by building their own 'Iron Mole' and uncovering the secrets that await beneath the Earth's surface.   Learn More →

Difference Engines: Mechanical Brains, Analog Computers

Before the digital era, the world's engineers,  scholars, and tradespeople built elegant engines of logic, both grand and modest, to aid them in their calculations and everyday tasks. Visit a world where bones, cogs and tubes are the cutting edge of computation. Learn how they worked and how they can inspire your own inventiveness, from the arithmetic to the literary!  Learn More →

SOL: A Solar System Journey

Explore our sun SOL and discover that despite being "in the uncharted backwaters of the unfashionable end of the western spiral arm of the Galaxy," the mysteries and magic of our Solar System, Earth, and Moon are far from "unregarded." Using your Solar System and Eclipses Explorer Passports, we will chart an arc of observing and learning across our sky.  Learn More →

Light, Optics & Color

Light travels 93 million miles from our sun to to get to us, so the least we can do is take some time to study it! Enjoy this program filled with demonstrations and hands-on opportunities allowing us to explore the origins and operations of light in everything from its optical gymnastics in mirrors and lenses to proving its dual state as both a particle and a wave.   Learn More →

Art & History of Computing

A panoramic view of computing starting with a 20,000 year old baboon fibula and ending with Quantum computing. We will cover the major developments  and paradigm shifts in the world of computing from bones and beads, to gears and tubes, to microcircuits and microchips, and beyond. Plenty of hands on activities with computing artifacts await.  Learn More →

Steampunk Writing Workshop

Come explore Steampunk’s always fantastic, often humorous, sometimes bizarre, and occasionally disturbing world of retro-futurism, speculative science fiction, and the Victorian era. Explore what it takes to become a paleo-futurist writer, how to approach the 'punk' aspect of Steampunk, and engage in character and worldbuilding labs.  Learn More →

The Force of Static Electricity

Enjoy this Star Wars themed science show exploring the wonders (and dangers) of the world of static electricity. Together we'll learn how to use The Force (of static electricity) to levitate and repel objects, power light tubes, and provide propulsion for spacecraft. We'll even have time for participants to practice performing some Jedi tricks themselves.  Learn More →

Doctor Who Writing Workshop

Do you have an idea for your own story of The Doctor but not sure where to begin? Well wonder no more! Come explore the Whoniverse and learn the secrets behind writing a great Doctor Who story while also having the opportunity to engage in character and world-building activities that will leave you ready to take on the literary universe. Alons-y!  Learn More →

Mars Lander Challenge

You're an engineer on a team responsible for designing a lander that will safely deliver an astronaut to the surface of Mars. You'll have materials, schedules, deadlines, and budgets to manage and the challenges of the Martian atmosphere to contend with. Can you do it? Of  course you can! Join us for the fun.  Learn More →

Fly Me to the Moon

The greatest single combined achievement of engineering and science in human history ...  and you missed it! Here's your chance to experience (or re-experience) what it was like for the 8 days from July 16-24, 1969 while three astronauts did what cultures around the Earth had dreamed of for millennia - travel to the moon and back.  Learn More →

Automata: Machines Mimicking Life

Before the invention of the electric motors, software, and computers that power today's toys and robots, there was the age of mechanics where motion was driven by cranks and gears, coding was done with cams and followers, and simple machines created surprisingly complex engines mirroring the processes of life. This program investigates the basic mechanisms of vintage automata, explores their progression from giant mechanations in medieval towers to miniature curiosities in royal parlors, and demonstrates their inspiration for the industrial revolution and modern computing and robotics. There will also be time at the end for guided, hands-on exploration of my automata collection that will highlight their application of simple machines.

Note that this program is based on the excellent BBC 4 documentary Mechanical Marvels, Clockwork Dreams.

PRESENTATION

Intrigued by the concept of medieval and modern machines that mirror life?

See what our partners have to say about this program and others in our Testimonials.

Please Note: Presentation and materials are for showcase purposes only and not meant to be used without explicit permission.

Automata COLLECTION

See my hands-on collection of automata implementing a variety of mechanical principles in mirroring lifelike motion.

LOGISTICS & FEE

Duration: 1.0 hour limited hands-on ;  2.0 hours extended hands-on

Age Range:  8 – adult (adaptable)

Participants:  4 – 30 (scalable to more with assistants)

Cost: Honorarium (contact for details)

DELIVERY REQUIREMENTS

Video Projector with HDMI port and speakers ; 1 large table for presenter's items ; 5 medium tables with chairs for hands-on stations ; 1 hour setup time; 4+ volunteers to help run hands-on stations preferred.

 

Geology & The Rock Cycle

Learn about minerals, igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic rocks, tectonic movements, and the rock cycle in this inquiry-based adventure that pits Her Majesty's Extraordinary Adventures against the brilliant Baron von Vaderstein in a race to explore the Earth's crust. Participants will plan their adventure, build a model of their "Iron Mole' ship for burrowing into the lithosphere, and carry out hands-on analysis of minerals and rocks to determine their type and place in the Rock Cycle.

 
Exploring the Earth's Layers
The Iron Mole
The Rock Cycle

PRESENTATION

Want to join Her Majesty's Extraordinary Adventurers on a journey through the Rock Cycle?

See what our partners have to say about this program and others in our Testimonials.

Please Note: Presentation and materials are for showcase purposes only and not meant to be used without explicit permission.

Desktop and Sample Kits

Participants engage in guided, self-directed learning using the resource-packed Adventure Desktop and accompanying Samples kit complete with analysis tools.

LOGISTICS & FEE

Duration: 4.0 hours (total) Can be spread across 4 days

Age Range:  8 – adult (adaptable)

Participants:  4 – 36

Cost: Honorarium (contact for details)

DELIVERY REQUIREMENTS

Video Projector with HDMI port and speakers ; 1 large table for presenter's items ; 8 medium tables with chairs for hands-on stations ; 0.5 hour setup time

 

Difference Engines: Mechanical Brains, Analog Computers

Ever since reading the 1991 Steampunk classic The Difference Engine by William Gibson and Bruce Sterling I have been intrigued by mechanical computing and its historical and literary impact on real and imagined societies. This program is designed to share that interest with others by exploring a brief history of computing before the age of silicon and giving participants guided hands-on time exploring and using rare analog computing artifacts from the 15th-20th centuries. See my image carousel in the next section for a visual tour of the devices available in this program. If you are interested in a comprehensive look into computing ranging from Analog to Artificial Intelligence, consider my program Art & History of Computing.

Presentation

Interested in learning about the bone, bronze, and iron ages of computing?

See what our partners have to say about this program and others in our Testimonials.

Please Note: Presentation and materials are for showcase purposes only and not meant to be used without explicit permission.

Computing Artifacts Collection

See my hands-on collection of computing artifacts ranging from the 15th - 20th centuries. Click on any photo to learn more about a device. Use the arrows at the left and right to move to different photos or simply allow the photos to automatically scroll.

LOGISTICS & FEE

Duration: 1.0 hour limited hands-on ;  2.0 hours extended hands-on

Age Range:  11 – adult (adaptable)

Participants:  4 – 50 (scalable to more with assistants) ; Presentation only has no limit

Cost: Honorarium (contact for details)

DELIVERY REQUIREMENTS

Video Projector with HDMI port and speakers ; 1 large table for presenter's items ; 5 medium tables with chairs for hands-on stations ; 1 hour setup time; 4+ volunteers to help run hands-on stations

More than just hands-on, it was hands-full. And brain-full, too. Great!
— Jenny S.
 

SOL: A Solar System Journey

Take time out of your day to learn about how a day actually happens, not to mention the years, seasons, tides, and phases of the moon. While you're at it, take a peek into  the movements, operations, facts, and phenomena of all of the bodies  in our cozy community orbiting our sun, SOL.

 
Our Solar System's Planetary Size Comparisons

Tour the Planets of Our Solar System

After a short bit of orienteering in our galaxy (and Universe), take a quick trip to each of the planets (and one dwarf-planet) in our Solar System and learn a few fun-facts as well as some very useful knowledge.

Earth

Explore seasons, Tides & moon phases

After settling into our immediate neighborhood, learn about how  Earth's rotation makes our days, how its orbit makes our seasons, and how the Sun, Moon, and Earth interact to create the moon's phases and the ocean tides.

Solar Eclipse

Recreate Solar & Lunar Eclipses

Wrap up your trip with a look at the most celebrated (and for some, the most frightening) aspects of Earth's little arrangement with the Moon; the mechanics of both Solar and Lunar eclipses.

Presentation & Materials

Are you up for a great visual and hands-on exploration of our planetary family as well as the neighborhood interactions of the Earth, Moon, and Sol?

See what our partners have to say about this program and others in our Testimonials.

Please Note: Presentation and materials are for showcase purposes only and not meant to be used without explicit permission.

Observation & Interactivity Tools

I am fortunate to have three specialized, elegant, and educational tools for this program:

  • Orrery: Consists of nine planets (pre-Pluto demotion)  and  their major moons orbiting the Sun at a precise 1/250 millionth interval, accurately reflecting the motions of the planets.
  • Tellurium: Features a light projecting Sun at the center of an orbiting arm that holds a model of the Earth rotating correctly on its axis as well as an orbiting Moon.
  • Sunspotter: Projects an image of the Sun onto a plate and allows groups to view the image simultaneously as well as make drawings that can be detailed enough to show sunspots and solar flares. (Will be included in program update)

Program participants observe and/or interact with these tools throughout the program, recording discoveries about the sun, planets, their motions, the phases of the Moon, the passage of days and seasons, the movements of eclipses, etc. in their special Solar System and Eclipse Passport Tour books.

Click on any photo to learn more about a device. Use the arrows at the left and right to move to different photos or simply allow the photos to automatically scroll.

Logistics & Fee

Duration: 1.0 hour limited hands-on ; 2.0 hours extended hands-on

Age Range:  8 – adult (adaptable)

Participants:  4 – 50 (Scalable with assistants)

Cost: Honorarium (contact for details)

DELIVERY REQUIREMENTS

Video Projector with HDMI port and speakers ; 1 large table for presenter's items (with extension cord for electricity) ; 5 medium tables for hands-on stations (2 with extension cords for electricity) ; 1 hour setup time ; 4 Assistants for Passport Tour Stations (Full Interactive version only)

You helped me see visually what I already understood in my mind, and helped me correct the misunderstandings I didn’t even know I had.
— Farook T.

Light, Optics & Color: What's in a Rainbow? 

This program offers an elegant and fun exploration of what light is, where it comes from, and how it behaves in our world. Demonstrations and hands-on opportunities with lenses, mirrors, light boxes, and lasers will give participants ample opportunity to study and explore the wonders of light reflection, refraction, transmission, and and absorption.

Presentation

Would you like to be enlightened about the unexpected and surprising movements of color and light in both physics and physiology?

See what our partners have to say about this program and others in our Testimonials.

Please Note: Presentation and materials are for showcase purposes only and not meant to be used without explicit permission.

Logistics & Fee

Duration: 1.0 hour limited hands-on ; 2.0 hours extended hands-on

Age Range:  8 – adult (adaptable)

Participants: 4 – 50 (scalable with assistants)

Cost: Honorarium (contact for details)

Delivery Requirements

Video Projector with HDMI port and speakers ; 1 large table for presenter's items (with extension cord for electricity) ; 5 medium tables for hands-on stations (3 with extension cords for electricity) ; 1 hour setup time ; Assistant for unloading & loading equipment ; Microphone for larger audience

This program was quite enlightening, you might say. I didn’t realize there was so much physics in a drop of water.
— Jemma M.

The Art & History of Computing:
from Before the Abacus to Beyond AI

Come on a journey in computing starting with a 20,000 year old baboon fibula and move through the progression of beads to cogs, tubes to silicon, and quantum particles to what lies beyond. Together we'll explore the long and surprising history of computing, work together to imagine the unexpected futures that may be ahead, and get hands-on experience with examples of computing from the 15th to 20th centuries. A panoramic view of the art and ingenuity behind the millennia of computer evolution and innovation awaits. For a more abbreviated version of this program covering analog through the onset of digital computing, see my Difference Engines: Mechanical Brains, Analog Computers offering.

Presentation

Interested in tracing the evolution of computers from mechanical to digital and beyond? Explore the presentations below to feed your curiosity and browse some of the photos to get a look at my collection of hands-on examples of computing from centuries past.

See what our partners have to say about this program and others in our Testimonials.

Please Note: Presentation and materials are for showcase purposes only and not meant to be used without explicit permission.

Computing Artifacts Collection

A sample of my ever growing artifacts in computing collection. Click on any photo to learn more about a device. Use the arrows at the left and right to move to different photos or simply allow the photos to automatically scroll.

Logistics & Fee

Duration: 1.0 hours presentation only ; 2.0 hours limited hands-on ; 3.0 hours extended hands-on 

Age Range:  11 – adult (adaptable)

Participants: Interactive 4 – 50 (scalable with assistants) ; Presentation only version has no limit

Cost: Honorarium (contact for details)

DELIVERY REQUIREMENTS

Video Projector with HDMI port and speakers ; 2 large tables for presenter's items ; 9 medium tables with chairs for hands on stations ; 1 hour setup time ; Assistant for unloading & loading equipment ; Microphone for larger audiences ; 4+ volunteers to help run hands-on stations.

 
“Well researched, well-crafted, and wonderfully entertaining.”
— Robert M.
“I’m in awe about what people used to have to do to use a computer. This was amazing!”
— Mikala T.
 

Writing Steampunk: A Primer for Beginners

What happens when we look back at the 19th and even 20th centuries’ predictions about our world of today? We find that much of the past’s science fiction has become science fact, but we also find some fascinating departures that are ripe for exploration. 

Come explore the always fantastic, often humorous, sometimes bizarre, and occasionally disturbing world of retro-futurism, speculative science fiction, and the Victorian era. Learn how you can use history’s facts and fantasies along with the past’s imagined futures to inspire and direct your science fiction writing today. Please bring your preferred writing tools.

 

Presentation & handout

Want to see the fun and creativity that awaits? Use the links below to view the workshop presentation, download the participant handout, and explore STEMpunkED's Steampunk Pinterest board as well as other resources.

See what our partners have to say about this program and others in our Testimonials.

Please Note: Presentation and materials are for showcase purposes only and not meant to be used without explicit permission.

Logistics & Fee

Duration: 3.0 hours basic interactivity ; 4.0 hours full interactivity

Age Range:  11 – adult (adaptable)

Participants: 4 – 36 (scalable with assistants)

Cost: Honorarium (contact for details)

Delivery Requirements

Video Projector with HDMI port and speakers ; copy of Packet for Writing Steampunk for each participant ; Writing implements ; Table for presenter's items.

The depth and breadth of this workshop completely prepared me to venture into the world of writing steampunk.
— Alonzo G.
“This program is exactly what I needed to get me writing in the genre!”
— Jenny H.

Steampunk Writing Resources

New to the steampunk genre or just looking to expand your knowledge of its tropes and conventions? The links below will help. 

TIPS & TOOLS FOR WRITING SCIENCE FICTION

Need some help getting your sci fi story off the ground or refining your idea? Check out these links that are sure to help you get started and focus on what matters. 

May the Force (of Static Electricity) Be with You!

The Force (of Static Electricity) surrounds us, binds us, and is a whole lot of fun to explore! Come Padawans, learn the secrets of static electricity and see live demonstrations of how you can harness its Force to move objects, generate lightning, and make electric wind. Join me and ‘SH0-K3R’ my 600,000-volt Van de Graaff generator as we show you  cool ‘Jedi’ tricks and help you perform a few of your own!


Presentation

Curious to feel the charged atmosphere for yourself, not to mention get a good jolt of nostalgia for our favorite space opera? Use the links below to view the presentation and get a sneak peek at some of the demonstrations you're sure to enjoy.

  • See the Workshop Presentation (please be patient while loading)
  • Watch me show children how to use The Force to repel pie tins
  • Watch me channel The Force to bend fire and water
  • Watch me tap into The Force charged air to power light tubes
  • Watch me direct The Force to deflect a bubble barrage

See what our partners have to say about this program and others in our Testimonials.

Please Note: Presentation and  materials are for showcase purposes only and not meant to be used without explicit permission.

Steampunk Version

You can also view my Steampunk version of this program: Doctor Conundrum's Electric Imaginarium.

Logistics & Fee

Duration: 1.0 hour basic hands-on ; 2.0 advanced hands-on 

Age Range:  4-adult (7 – adult for hands-on)

Participants: 4 – 250

Cost: Honorarium (contact for details)

DELIVERY REQUIREMENTS

Video Projector with HDMI port and speakers ; Convenient electrical outlet ; 2 large tables for presenter's items ; 1 hour setup time ; Assistant for unloading & loading equipment ; Microphone for larger audiences

“You could say that I was ‘shocked’ to discover how much static electricity really is like Jedi powers. I wonder if Lucas knows about this.”
— Garrick J.

Learn More about Static Electricity

  • UNT Physics Demonstrations: You don’t need a full size static electricity generator to have fun with electrostatics, many household items will do just fine.
  • Bill Nye – the Science Guy: A clip on electrostatics from the grand-daddy of popular science education shows for kids.
  • Stuff to Blow Your Kid’s Mind: Robert and Julie explain what happens with static electricity at the atomic level in a very easy-to-understand way.
  • Yahoo! Answers: Despite their similar behaviors, static electricity and magnetism are different phenomena – this is a breakdown of the differences.
  • Sci-Toys.com – Electromagnetism: Though it discusses electromagnetism, there is a nice set of instructions for building your own mini static electricity generator.
  • Electrostatic ‘Wall’ at 3M Adhesive Tape Plant: A true story about a massive buildup of static charge that created a ‘force field’ in part of a factory.
  • Static Electricity Misconceptions : Explainations, clarifications, and when needed, debunking of ideas on the topic of static electricity.
  • What is Electricity?: Expainations of the difference between current electricity (like in your house) and static electricity.
 

Doctor Who Writing Workshop: Exploring the Whoniverse

A workshop for Whovians wanting to try their hand at writing fan fiction. First we’ll explore the legends of Gallifrey, the Timelords, and the Doctor. Then we will revisit those legends using Joseph Campbell’s famous Hero’s Journey and the Monomyth to learn the secret to writing a great Doctor Who story. Lastly we’ll dive into the Character Generation and Worldbuilding Lab where we’ll create new characters, settings, and plot lines to inspire your future writing. Please bring your preferred writing tools.

 

Presentation & Handout

Want to see the fun and creativity that awaits? Use the links below to view the workshop presentation, download the participant handouts, and explore STEMpunkED's Doctor Who Pinterest board as well as other resources.

See what our partners have to say about this program and others in our Testimonials.

Please Note: Presentation and class materials are for showcase purposes only and not meant to be used without explicit permission.

Doctor Who Time Tunnel

Logistics & Fee

Duration: 3.0 hours limited interactivity ; 4.0 hours full interactivity

Age Range:  11 – adult (adaptable)

Participants: 4 – 36 (scalable with assistants)

Cost: Honorarium (contact for details)

DELIVERY REQUIREMENTS

Video Projector with HDMI port and speakers ; copy of  Packet for Writing in the Whoniverse for each participant ; Writing implements ; Tables and chairs arranged in semi-circle ; Table for presenter's items.

“Now I’m ready to tell the story of The Doctor that I’ve had in my head.”
— Jose G.
A marvelous exploration of Classic Who, New Who, and who knew!
— Gloria N.

Doctor Who Writing Resources

Can't remember which Doctor experienced a particular adventure?  Looking for more explanations of the Doctor's history? Check these links for this and more.

TIPS & TOOLS FOR WRITING SCIENCE FICTION

Need some help getting your sci fi story off the ground or refining your idea? Check out these links that are sure to help you get started and focus on what matters. 

The Egg-cellent Mars Lander Challenge:
Successful or Splat-tacular?

NASA’s Orion spacecraft is ready for its mission to Mars. All that remains is for the next generation of artists and engineers to design a vehicle that will deliver an astronaut safely to the red planet’s surface. Come and take up the challenge of building a lander out of everyday materials that will protect an egg from a two story drop and help build the future of space travel.

Workshop Breakdown

This is a four consecutive session workshop, each session meeting for 1.25 hours. A breakdown of the activities is below.

Students-resized.png

Day 01: Project Briefing & Brainstorming

Participant groups will  attend a NASA project briefing on the Mars mission challenges, parameters and constraints, and then brainstorm lander designs.

engineering-design-process.jpg

Day 02: Design Selection & Planning

Participants will bring their independently developed design ideas to their company meeting, advocate and debate design options, then select and finalize a design.

Egglander-resize.png

Day 03: Build & Test Prototype

Participants will build their lander prototypes based on their company designs then pilot test and refine their prototypes based on test results.

Drop-resize.png

    Day 04: prototype Demo & Results Briefing

    Groups will convene to test their prototypes in a two-story drop and then review their lander's performance to recommend design changes and improvements.

    See what our partners have to say about this program and others in our Testimonials.

    Please Note: Presentation and class materials are for showcase purposes only and not meant to be used without explicit permission.

    Logistics & Fee

    Duration: 1.5 hours x 4 days

    Age Range:  11 – adult (adaptable)

    Participants: 4 – 20 (scalable with assistants)

    Cost: Honorarium (contact for details)

    DELIVERY REQUIREMENTS

    Video Projector with HDMI port and speakers ; All inventory specified on Building Supplies List; Tables and chairs for groups of 4 ; Microphone for larger audiences

    “It was like being every person on a Mars mission team at once...managers, engineers, scientists ... I even felt like the egg sometimes.”
    — 'Tulia B.
    “...it was a real challenge, especially working as a group sometimes, but it was so worth it to see the Great Narwhal [the lander] touch down safely.”
    — Tony S.

    Fly Me to the Moon: One Story of NASA's Golden Age
    and the Apollo 11 Lunar Landing

    An interactive, entertaining, educational, and just plain fun re-enactment of the day the earth stood still as it watched humans walk on the moon. NASA video, hands-on activities, and dramatic performance will place attendees of all ages inside the Houston Space Center press room on July 20th, 1969 and recreate the awe and amazement of the event that concluded the space race of the ‘60s and realized a dream bridging both cultures and time.


    Presentation & Resources

    Want a taste of the experience  that awaits? View our presentation below. You might have missed the original landing in 1969, but you don't want to miss out on this re-creation and remembrance of  humanity's greatest achievement in science and engineering.

    See what our partners have to say about this program and others in our Testimonials.

    Please Note: Presentation and class materials are for showcase purposes only and not meant to be used without explicit permission.

    LOGISTICS & FEE

    Duration: 1.25 hours (parts 1 & 3) -OR- 1.75 hours (parts 1-3)

    Age Range:  7 – adult (adaptable)

    Participants: 4-250

    Cost: Honorarium (contact for details)

    DELIVERY REQUIREMENTS

    Video Projector with HDMI port and speakers ; Table for presenter's items ; Microphone for larger audiences

    “Richard reminded me what it was like to be 10 again and watching the landing with my parents. He brought back so many memories and reminded me why we were in the space race to begin with.”
    — Edith S.
    “Even my parents weren’t around when [the moon landing] happened, but this presentation made me feel like I know what it was like to be there.”
    — Connor R.

    Testimonials

    What do our clients and partners say about us?

    Learn More →

    PROJECTS

    What new projects are we working on today?

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    WHAT WE DO

    What is STEMpunk™ and what is its purpose?

    Learn More →

    NEWS

    Want project updates or a peak into what's on our minds?

    Learn More →