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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How does one get involved with the After School Program?

Mad Science After School Programs are run through schools, libraries, community centers, and any other place there are kids!  After School Programs are not open to the public but are rather offerings made by schools (or other organizations) to their students.

Who pays for After School Programs?

Typically, After School Programs are paid for by the student.  In some cases, a PTO or other organization may opt to pay part or all of the students' enrollment.

What does the school need to do?

As much or as little as it wants to!  All we need from the school is space.  (More on that below.)  We supply all of the materials and instructors.  Parent/Teacher helpers are not required (but are very welcome).  We can even provide registration forms and administer the registration process if you prefer!

How long does an After School Program run?

That's up to you!  Our programs run one day a week from four to eight weeks, depending on your needs.

Are After School Programs only offered at certain times or on certain days?

We'll let you in on a little secret: even though we call them After School Programs, we can run them anytime!  We recognize that different organizations have different needs.  Whether you're an elementary school, homeschooler, daycare center, or scout troop, we can adapt to your schedule.  Would you like to run the program in the summer? OK!  What about in the morning?  Sure!  Do you meet in the evenings?  Fine by us!  If your kids are there, we are too!  Days from Monday through Thursday tend to work best, though we will happily accommodate alternative schedules.

Do we get to pick the topics?

Unlike Workshops, which are designed to supplement a curriculum or fulfill a specific educational requirement, After School Programs are pre-created series, or "Systems" of up to eight classes designed to expose students to a variety of science topics.  If you should opt to run a program for less than eight weeks, we will select which classes to omit from the original eight in order to provide the students with the best variety of topics.  (For example, a System may have two "space"-related classes.  We may omit one of those in favor of a different topic.)  If you should have a preference however, you are welcome to request which classes are omitted.

What kind of space do you need?

We need enough space for kids to work comfortably without being disturbed.  Since many activities are done as small groups, tables or floor space tends to work better than desks.  We would also need access to water, electricity, and preferably a room that can be darkened somewhat (to make some experiments even cooler!).

How many kids can you accommodate?

Our After School Programs can accommodate up to 20 students.  Unlike, for example, a yoga class or an art class, Mad Science After School Programs are very equipment-focused.  During the program, kids may be using anything from slide viewers to lasers.  Some activities are done as individuals and some are done in small groups.  In either case, we have a finite amount of equipment and can therefore only accommodate a finite number of students.

Is the Mad Science After School Program a class or an after-care program?

Mad Science is an extension of the school day, not an after-care program, therefore only children with a sincere interest in our programs and the necessary maturity to handle an additional school class should participate.  Mad Science strives at all times to provide safe and fun science activities for all of its participants.  To fulfill this commitment, all children enrolled are expected to adhere to basic behavioral guidelines.  In addition to any school rules, all of which remain in effect during our programs, our instructors set clear boundaries and expectations for appropriate conduct within our classes.  Disruptive or disrespectful behavior will not be tolerated.

Our students don't know much about Mad Science.  How can we get them interested?

For schools that are new to Mad Science and are interested in running an Afterschool Progam, we will be happy to do a school assembly at a significant discount from our regular rate.  This is a great way to introduce your kids to the fun they can have as part of the Mad Science After School Program.  It's also an opportunity for kids that may not get to participate in the Mad Science After School Program to have a blast!

There is a particular Mad Scientist that we really like!  Could we request him or her?

Our Mad Scientists recognize the great compliment it is to be specifically requested for a program.  Unfortunately, due to the number of programs we typically run and the intricacies of program scheduling, travel, equipment distribution, and time off for our instructors, we cannot guarantee a specific Mad Scientist for a specific program.  While we will make every reasonable effort to accommodate requests, we can only assure you that you will be satisfied with the excellent Mad Scientist that does your program, whomever it may be.

Our kids are all boys/all girls.  Can we request that our Mad Scientist be a male/female?

Similar to a request for a specific Mad Scientist, we cannot guarantee the gender of your Mad Scientist for all of the same reasons.  We can assure you that you and the kids will be satisfied with any one of our excellent Mad Scientists.


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