Innovation Station

The Innovation Station is a platform to engage children and families in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math) through innovative, hands-on learning experiences. It is a space where kids create, make, discover, investigate, and invent. The space gives kids a chance to apply problem-solving skills, test and revise their ideas, experiment, collaborate, and have fun.

Innovation Station Hours

MakerSpace hours:
Thursday - Friday: 10am-12pm 
Saturday - Sunday: 2pm-4pm

Instructor-led STEAM Programming:

Saturday: 10am-12pm

Self-Guided STEAM Activities:
Always available


The Innovation Station consists of a science lab and a maker space. What is a maker space? The Maker Space allows children and families to use real tools and materials to design, make, tinker and create projects on their own. Kids can take stuff apart and learn the inner workings of machines, build and make cool things, and just experiment and explore.

Check out all the great activities happening in the Innovation Station. Visit our online home and follow along on our making adventure!

Monthly Special Event Days

September: National Wildlife Day
October: National Youth Science Day, National Farmer’s Day, and Chemistry Week
November: National Candy Day and National America Recycles Day

Physics Days

ISU Faculty, Dr. Jay Ansher and students will provide hands-on demonstrations, experiments and more on new topics each month!

Thursday, August 24: Astronomy
The Late Summer sky is filled with stars, planets, and other fascinating objects.  Join the ISU Physics Club as they explore astronomy with hands-on demonstrations, telescopes, and weather permitting, a chance to view the Moon or Sun through a telescope.

Thursday, September 14: Waves
Water waves on the ocean, on a pond, or in a swimming pool are only one kind of wave. Light and sound also travel as waves, and you may have even been part of a wave in a stadium.  The ISU Physics Club will bring demonstrations that will fascinate you as you can make waves on a slinky, see your voice, and explore other waves on your own!

Thursday, October 12: Projectiles
The ISU Physics Club will present the science behind throwing things into the air! Whether fired from a gun, thrown by your arm, or dropped off a cliff, projectiles will always follow a few simple laws, and the law of gravity is only one of them!

Thursday, November 2: Magnetism
What makes a magnet a magnet?? Why are some stronger than others? Learn how magnets work, and how they can be used to help you find your way in the wilderness as well!  Join the ISU Physics Club as they demonstrate the strange properties of magnetism on Physics Day!

Growing Up Wild

Master Naturalists are members of our local community that love nature! The mission of the University of Illinois Master Naturalist Program is to provide science-based educational opportunities that connect people with nature and help them become engaged environmental stewards. These activities will help children connect with nature and develop an appreciation for our world’s limited natural resources.

Time: 4:00pm – 6:00pm

September 21 – Looking at Leaves: Children practice their observation skills by comparing leaves.

October 12 and 26 – Who lives in a Tree?: Children develop an awareness of trees and some of the animals that call them "home."

November 16 and 30 – Terrific Turkeys: children learn about wild turkeys.

December 14 – Tracks!: children explore animal tracks and make and compare tracks of their own.