Spark!Lab® Smithsonian

Everyone can be an inventor!

Activities in Spark!Lab incorporate traditional science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) with art, museum, and creativity. Facilitators will assist Spark!Lab visitors by employing inquiry-based learning techniques to help participants work through challenges, identify design solutions, and create their own unique inventions!

Spark!Lab is included with Full Museum admission. Entry is first come first served; space is limited.

Spark!Lab Hours

Fall & Winter Hours

Tuesday 9:30 am –  12 pm; 1 pm – 3 pm
Wednesday 9:30 am –  12 pm; 1 pm – 3 pm
Thursday  12:30 pm – 3:30 pm; 4 pm – 7 pm
Friday 9:30 am –  12 pm; 1 pm – 3 pm
Saturday 9:30 am –  12 pm; 1 pm – 3 pm
Sunday 1 pm – 5 pm

Activity choices for  November 24 – December 21:

Help Clean up the Ocean – It can’t be denied that the oceans need our help. Using materials, and their imagination, visitors are challenged to design a system to clean up plastic in the ocean. Visitors can try out their ideas in our mini ocean, complete with floating bits of plastic. Can you create a new way to clean up plastic from water?

Sketch ItVisitors can use their imagination to create a new invention to solve a variety of scenarios. Start with one of our orange challenge cards, pick a yellow client card and begin thinking about what new ideas could help your client with their problem. By thinking creatively to solve a problem visitors experience the kind of playful, flexible thinking that inventors, designers and artists use every day.

Towering Teeter Table – Because they’re always trying to solve new problems, inventors are constantly learning new skills and rules. The Towering Teeter Table challenges visitors to use blocks to build structures under challenging – and unstable – circumstances.

Activities change on a regular basis, ensuring that regular visitors have something new to explore.

Generously supported by the Dow Corning Foundation and The Patricia & David Kepler Foundation