School Programs 2018-2019

Chain Reaction: A series of astonishing events

Da Vinci’s notebooks are filled to the brim with creative and remarkable inventions ideas: flying machines, catapulting devices, spinning cranes, prototypes for tanks and other odd contraptions. They all work because they make use of simple machines.

For bookings between May 2 and June 21, participants will get a sneak peek tour of the Leonardo da Vinci—500 Years of Genius exhibition for inspiration.

Participants will have the chance to create a complex chain reaction machine, using familiar materials in unusual ways. Along the way, participants will work in small teams as they experiment with energy transference. Eventually each team will connect their section of the mechanism to their teammates’ sections, in order to create an interconnected contraption.

This educational and playful workshop develops exit outcomes such as critical thinking, collaboration, resiliency, and communication skills. It also requires a great deal of innovation and creativity!

Curriculum Links

Grade 5          Science and Technology – Forces Acting on Structures and Mechanisms Primary
Cycle 3
Science and Technology – Material World (Forces and Motion, Systems and interaction and Techniques and instrumentation)
Grade 6 Science and Technology Secondary
Cycle 1
Science and Technology – The Technological World (Forces and Motion)
Grade 7 Science and Technology – Form and Function Secondary
Cycle 2
Physics (Kinematics, Dynamics, Transformation of Energy)
Grade 8
Science and Technology – Systems in Action
Grade 11 SPH3U – Kinematics Forces Energy and Society    
Grade 12 SPH4U – Dynamics, Energy and Momentum

SPH4C – Motion and its Application Mechanical Systems Energy Transformations

Note: Although the grade and age range are not mandatory, this activity can be difficult for younger children to complete on their own. For ages 10+.

Teacher Tips

Make name tags to help the museum educator build rapport with students. Students may bring a lunch or purchase one from the museum’s café.

To ensure the activity runs smoothly, please create groups of three participants (maximum four) and number the groups prior to the workshop.  

Consider familiarizing your group with our site by downloading a PDF document and PowerPoint presentation available below.


$10 per participant

Minimum number of participants: 15
Maximum number of participants: 30
A minimum fee of $150 will be charged per group.

Fees may be prepaid or paid upon arrival by cash, credit card, or cheque (payable to the Canada Science and Technology Museum).

Cancellations require 48 hours notice. A $30 administration fee applies unless the program is rescheduled within the same school year.


To reserve this program, call:


1-866-442-4416 (toll-free)

You may also complete the online reservation form or email

Back to top