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Our services

For Kids and Families

The Free Science Workshop opens its doors for free exploration, creation, and discovery several days a week. Hours vary seasonally and in conjunction with the Ithaca City School District Schedule.

For Community Groups

The Free Science Workshop is proud to collaborate with and provide opportunities to our local community organizations through field trips and remote outreach.

For Schools

As a supplement to classroom curricula, classes visiting the Free Science Workshop are provided access to professional tools, materials, and instruction to facillitate a deeper exploration of science concepts.

For Volunteers

In addition to direct mentoring of local youth, the Free Science Workshop provides a variety of opportunities for community minded individuals to contribute to increased equity in STEM.

Kids and their Adults

The Free Science Workshop is a free-choice environment where youth can walk in and direct their own education. They can pursue what interests them most from a wide range of opportunities including electronic tinkering, woodshop and construction, caring for plants and animals, and designing their own projects.

Open drop in hours are always free to attend with no paperwork required. Adults are welcome to participate but not obligated to attend.

We ask that participants:

  • Attend because they are interested in the opportunities offered
  • Are at least 6 years old if attending without an accompanying guardian
  • Are willing and able to comply with our conduct guidelines
  • Are able to leave if and when they wish to

Free Science Workshop prioritizes serving historically marginalized and underserved low-income youth. We have limited resources and serve those most in need of and able to benefit from the opportunities that we offer. We ask families to self-identify as eligible for our services.

“[ The kids] truly feel as if they are part of science and the community by having such a wonderful place to go on a weekly basis”

-R. Cornell, Urban 4-H Program Director

Weekly visits from partnering organizations expand the reach of Free Science to youth and families living beyond a walkable distance. Building up from small take-home engineering and science projects to bigger, long term challenges and group projects, our community partner groups make full use of our available resources and opportunities, and connect individuals to a larger network of community based collaboration.

If you are associated with a local Ithaca community organization and are interested in utilizing the Free Science Workshop with your group, we would love to hear from you!

Community Partners

FSW in Schools

“The Free Science Workshop provides our group with opportunities and learning experiences that are not available anywhere else in our city. Our children have been exposed to interesting and innovative science lessons and given many opportunities to think creatively. They go home with amazing creations every week. The lessons were created with our children’s ages and interests in mind and they looked forward to coming every Monday. The Free Science Workshop is an incredible community resource!”

– C.Thomas, Lead Teacher DICC

New to the Free Science Workshop is our budding collaboration with area schools. Through a combination of bringing workshop components into the classrooms and bringing students themselves into the Workshop, we are able to supplement traditional curricula and provide access to professional quality equipment, materials, and instruction. Content can be tailored to fit your grade level, unit, schedule, and student ability. For all scholastic related inquiries, please be sure to include your class size, areas of interest, student ages, and transportation abilities.

“What’s it like to hold a large Ball python? Look at skin cells under a microscope? Dissect a fish 2-3 ft. long? It’s pretty exciting and empowering…the magic and the wonder of real science. I’m so happy to be part of this wonderful experiment.”

– P. Shea, Community Volunteer

Our volunteers make more than just projects, they make a difference!

Though the Free Science Workshop relies on donations of all kinds, the donation of one’s time is often the most immediately evident to our participants. We are currently looking for community minded individuals who are interested in sharing their love of science, nature, tinkering or empowering youth to join our team.

Consider lending a helping hand as:

  • A Program Facilitator
  • A Mentor
  • A Content Developer
  • A Special Guest
  • Organizational Support

Hands On

Thank you to our supporters!