Interactive Lessons

Explore science up close with interactive STEM lessons

We strive to advance science literacy on a broad range of topics—from engineering and computer science to paleontology and climate—because we envision a world where everyone has the power to use science to make lives better.

The Science Museum of Minnesota provides both free and paid resources for K-12 learners to explore science and spark a lifelong passion for STEM.

These online learning opportunities bring our collections, research, and exhibits together for educators to incorporate into their learning environments. While they’re designed for classroom teachers, homeschooling parents and informal educators are welcome to use them too.

Interactive Lessons

Designed by our museum educators, these virtual sessions are highly engaging and tied to academic standards. Thanks to the generous support of our sponsors, they are provided free of charge this school year.

Automata: Storytelling Devices

Grades 3-5

Learn how to engineer three different storytelling devices to bring scenes to life from two traditional Hmong folktales.

Child enjoying an engineering activity.

Engineer It: Solving Problems Together

Grades 3-5

Tag along with an engineer as they use nature to design possible solutions for a noisy problem.

power plant energy turbine

Energy Connections

Grades 9-12

Virtually tour a power plant, explore how energy use impacts the Earth, and learn how people can collectively act against climate change in these online lessons.

A person sitting at a table looking at a laptop computer.

Scratch Explorations

Grade 3-Adult

Spark discovery with computer programming in Scratch, a free block-based online tool, with easy-to-follow video lessons for beginners.

An aerial view of the Mississippi River.

Water is Life

Grades K-3

This student-paced course brings learners to a typical Minnesota pond to explore the importance of water to all our lives.

A cartoon of two people standing against a wall. A person of color looks away from the wall while a white person begins to spray paint the wall.

Busted! Interactive experience

Grades 7-12

How do White people and BIPOC people experience the criminal justice system differently? This interactive narrative shows the legal system through the eyes of BIPOC youth. 

Nine fossils from Minnesota on display

Voting (for) Rocks

Grades 3-6

Paleontology and civics meet in a course collection all about fossils and elections! Engage students in the legislative process as they meet the candidates and dig deeper into their campaigns before voting as a classroom.

A machine showing corn.

Be A Storyteller: Use Engineering To Build An Automaton

Grades 3-12

Build an automaton, a machine with moving parts, that tells the story of the relationship between corn and the people who developed it hundreds of years ago.

A person standing in a stream.

What’s in your stream?

Grades K–3

Explore and examine Minnesota’s streams to find macroinvertebrates in this student-paced course.

Sunset at Crosby Farm

Plant for the Future

Grades 7-8

This online resource for educators on water and climate will help learners explore their nearby environments and learn what they can do to protect them.

Three wind generators can be seen in the distance with blue skies in the background and green fields in the foreground.

Turn the Crank

Grades 3-5

Electricity is a source of energy made by other forms of energy, and its existence is vital to life on Earth. Enter the exciting world of energy production in this student-led activity.

A row of powerlines disappears into the sunset.

Sources of Energy: Crank Up the Watts

Grades 3-5

How is electricity produced, and what are the pros and cons? Learners will find local connections to energy and explore steps everyone can take to reduce the disadvantages of production.

A young girl doing homework at a desk by lamplight.

Personal Energy Use: Crank Smarter

Grades 3-5

Practice energy conservation now to spark a lifelong passion for saving energy as an adult through an interactive game around daily energy use.

Dr. Alex Hastings peers through the skull of a triceratops.

Dino Discovery

Grades K-2

A student-paced introduction to the nature of science using the wonder of dinosaurs to make discoveries like a scientist.

Close-up of T-rex teeth.

Dino Dentist

Grades K-2

A student-paced exploration into fossils and what they have to teach us about dinosaurs.

A collage of a diverse set of faces.

RACE: Are We So Different Virtual Exhibit Experience

Grades 6-12

Take a cultural and scientific look at race throughout history and discover the many reasons we should celebrate our differences and embrace our shared histories.

Additional Resources

A person sitting with a laptop in from of him. They're holding a pen and wearing headphones while looking at the laptop screen.

Mystery Objects Mini Lesson


Why are computers so useful to humans? What unique abilities do people have that computers don’t? Explore the unique strengths of humans and computers in this object-based investigation.

A drawing of a diatom.

Science is learning toolkit


Downloadable science materials, coloring pages, and activities for all ages that are created to help you and your students turn on the science together.

Computational Thinking Practices


How can you integrate what humans are good at and what computers are good at in your classroom? This resource has the answers.