School Programs FAQs
Can we use the dining court for lunch?
The Museum’s Dining Court is available to groups via advanced booking only. To ensure that all groups can use the Dining Court, please be prompt in taking your lunch and encourage your students to keep the area clean for others. The Museum does NOT supply refrigeration for lunches. Please use the following guidelines to help you with your planning:
- Lunch bookings are available in 30-minute blocks
- Bag lunches for the class must be placed in boxes or large bags
- Picnic grounds are available on warm days
What do you do in the event of bad weather?
If you must cancel your visit due to inclement weather, please contact us as soon as possible at (203) 372-3521 x117 and leave a message if outside of regular business hours. Refunds are issued if your school or the Museum is closed or has a delayed opening due to inclement weather that causes you to miss your scheduled booking.
What if I have to cancel?
To avoid unwanted charges, all changes MUST be called in to the STEM Learning Programs office no later than 48 hours prior to your visit. Refunds for reduced headcounts will only be issued if a minimum of 48 hours’ advance notice of change in attendance is given. Refunds or, where possible, options to reschedule are issued if your school or the Museum is closed or has a delayed opening due to bad weather. Cancellations without proper notice are not refundable.
What are your payment procedures?
Program fees may be paid by check of major credit card. Invoices will be issued to organizations that supply a valid purchase order. Purchase orders should reference the date of visit, reservation number, program description, and should be sent directly to the attention of Robin Keller in the STEM Learning Programs Department at least two (2) weeks before the program date. Please make all checks or money orders payable to The Discovery Museum, Inc. If you would like to pay by credit card, please call our Front Desk Team at (203) 372-3521 x125.
Do you allow chaperones?
Yes. Chaperones are required in the ratio of 10:1 for Grades K and up, and 5:1 for Pre-School groups. Admission is free for required chaperones in keeping with the above ratios. Additional chaperones will be charged $10 per chaperone. All chaperones must be over the age of 18. Adults, including teachers, chaperones, and group leaders, are responsible for the actions of their group at The Discovery Museum.
What is your reservation procedure?
Group reservations must be made at least 3 weeks in advance. Written confirmation will be sent by email or fax. Please review the confirmation information. Payment or purchase order should be sent at least two (2) weeks before your scheduled visit. Reservations are NOT guaranteed without receipt of FULL payment or purchase order. Any request for changes should be called in to the STEM Learning Programs Office at (203) 372-3521 x. 117. You will be charged for the number of students and chaperones indicated at the time of booking unless you call with headcount changes at least 48 hours prior to check-in. Additional students and chaperones who arrive the day of the visit MUST be paid for at the front desk upon arrival; we do not send invoices for additional students and chaperones. Late arrivals will receive shortened programs. Please call if you will be more than 20 minutes late.
Do you take non-school group reservations?
Absolutely. Please call 203-372-3521 x117
What does a typical day of programs at the Museum look like?
SAMPLE CUSTOM DAY 9:20 – Arrival/Check-in 9:30-10:15 – Science Demo or Planetarium Show 10:15-11:30 – Learning Lab 11:30-12:00 – Lunch 12:00-1:15 – Hands-On Galleries 1:30 – Depart (The sample above is only a suggested schedule; times and activities can be changed to fit your needs!)
What information do you need from me when I call to book?Having trouble choosing?
Please have the following information when you call:
- Date of visit. Please note our schedule fills up quickly, so we recommend having alternative dates at the ready
- The title or type of program(s) you are interested in booking
- Address and phone numbers of the school at teacher, primary contact email
- Group size: students and chaperones (NB: one chaperone per ten students is required)
- Site Visit Contact: The name and phone number of the person who will lead the school group visit to the Museum
- Special Needs for the class or individual students
- Know whether you would like to include a visit to the galleries, order goodie bags from the Museum Store, or use the dining court
How far in advance do I need to book? Will you hold my date?
Bookings must be made at least three weeks in advance. We cannot reserve dates without payment, so we recommend booking well in advance as spaces fill up quickly during the school year—plan now so that your group may join the thousands of students participating in Museum programs this year!
Are Discounts Available?
Multiple programs booked for the same group and visit date are often available at a discounted rate. Many group leaders elect to design a custom day of learning labs and related experiences.
Do you travel to schools and businesses for programs?
YES! Save on bus fees and travel time as we bring interactive science right to your school! We know you can’t always bring your class to The Discovery Museum, so we’ll bring the science to you! Our educators are happy to come to your school with learning labs and science demonstrations! Call 203-372-3521 x117
* For any other inquiries or assistance, please contact our Membership Coordinator Linda Smith.