Hands-On Berkeley STEAM Lab for Preschoolers

Creative STEM Fun in Berkeley

Hands-On Berkeley is a bright little studio, created by educator Tracy Hollander, who has a long history of facilitating tinkering and discovery for children. Colorful chairs and art supplies are thoughtfully organized on the shelves, including on some mobile materials stations that children can pull towards themselves as needed.

This article is sponsored by HANDS-ON! STEAM Lab in Berkeley.

Activity types span science, technology, engineering, art, and math, as the descriptor STEAM lab suggests. It has been a wonderful resource for kids wanting to get their hands messy with fun and learning.

During the modified Shelter-in-place orders, HANDS-ON! has developed three creative ways to bring STEAM joy to kids: sibling science, birthday party kits, and science experiment kits.

Sibling Science is a customized STEAM session at HANDS-ON!

Siblings can enjoy a series of private STEAM science lessons with HANDS-ON! founder/director and credentialed teacher Tracy Hollander. Sessions will be customized to the interests of the children. These private classes are usually one hour and fifteen minutes, but longer sessions are possible.

sisters doing science
Siblings honing engineering skills with various supports and connectors at Sibling Science | Photo: HANDS-ON!

HANDS-ON! at Home Birthday Party Kits provide all the elements for a magical party at home

Ranging from $219 to $239 for the whole package, all HANDS-ON! at Home Birthday Party in a Kits include what you need to provide thematic science fun for your birthday star and partygoers, safety goggles for 10-12 participants, and comprehensive instructions.

candy science experiment
Sweet candy science experiment (as party or individual science kit) | Photo: HANDS-ON!

You can set up the party at your big backyard or socially distanced park location. Current science themes for party kits include:

  • The Magic of Unicorns or Fairies: The unicorn (or fairy) themed parties bring the mystery alive with art and science projects. Each partygoer will leave with their very own magical garden.
  • Mad Science: For ages 5+, junior scientists who love mixing and pouring all kinds of random substances will enjoy this experiment. The kit includes a set of funnels, graduated cylinders, beakers, and pipettes. Each guest scientist will leave with a test tube sample of their concoction.
  • Science of Bubbles: For ages 5+, young scientists make their own scientific discoveries by creating and exploring bubbles, bubble solution, and wands.
  • Candy Experiments: For ages 6+, the color play and chemistry all revolves around three different candy types.

Order a HANDS-ON! at Home Birthday Party in a Kit today >

bubbling over potion
Magic unicorn “sand” (as party or individual science kit) | Photo: HANDS-ON!

HANDS-ON! at Home Science Kits provide all the materials for science experiments at home

With similar themes to the HANDS-ON! at Home Birthday Party in a Kits, the quantity of materials is scaled back to be more appropriate for a family. Young scientists get safety goggles, ingredients, and the tools needed to perform engaging science experiments and projects. Prices range from $30 to $39.

Order a HANDS-ON! at Home Science Kit today >

Experimenting with bubbles
Mad Science Concoction Kit (as party or individual science kit) | Photo: HANDS-ON!

Hands-On Berkeley is at 1411 MLK Jr Way in Berkeley.

We want to thank HANDS-ON! Berkeley for sponsoring us today.

[Photos provided by HANDS-ON! Berkeley]

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