Explore Science: Earth & Space toolkit - How to Apply

Explore Science Earth & Space logoThe National Informal STEM Education Network (NISE Net) is pleased to offer 250 free Explore Science: Earth & Space 2017 toolkits to new and existing eligible partners in the United States.  In collaboration with NASA, the NISE Network has assembled a new set of engaging, hands-on Earth and space science experiences with connections to science, technology, and society.   

Physical toolkits awarded

List of 250 NISE Network partners who will receive a physical 2017 Explore Science: Earth & Space toolkit

Digital Toolkit

Digital versions of the 2017 toolkit is available for download:


How to Apply

  • Applications were due: November 4, 2016 (The application is now closed)
  • Applications must be submitted online using SurveyGizmo:


Toolkit Contents & Audiences

Two hundred and fifty (250) free Explore Science: Earth & Space physical 2017 toolkits will be awarded to successful applicants from eligible organizations.

  • Activities are designed for use in children’s museums, science centers, science museums, public planetariums and observatories, and NASA visitor centers in the United States.
  • Activities are designed for family audiences with a range of experiences appropriate for visitors ages 4 through adult.

Explore Science: Earth & Space toolkits will include:

  • Nine hands-on activities to engage the public in Earth and space sciences including: heliophysics, Earth science, planetary science, astrophysics, and their connections to society
  • Professional development materials including activity training videos
  • Event planning guides
  • Marketing and promotional materials

In addition to the physical toolkits, all digital materials will be available online for free download. The NISE Network will also be hosting a series of one-hour online workshops featuring a variety of topics as well as a three-week online training on engaging visitors in Earth and space programming using the toolkits. All online workshops will be recorded and archived. 


September 1, 2016:    Online application opens to apply for a free physical toolkit
November 4, 2016:     Deadline to submit application
December 2016:         Notification of award decisions
January 2017:            Toolkits delivered to successful applicants
March - May 2017:     Successful applicants host required public event(s)
June 15, 2017:            Event reports due online (note: in additional to the required report,the project evaluators will also be conducting additional surveys)

Future years: In addition to the 2017 toolkit, we anticipate a series of toolkits with different content available each year over the following three years (for a total of four toolkits).


The physical toolkit is designed for informal science education public events and outreach. To be eligible to receive a physical toolkit, organizations must be:

  • Located in the United States
  • Public informal science outreach and education institutions such as:
    • science museums and science centers,
    • children’s museums,
    • natural history museums,
    • public planetariums and observatories, and
    • NASA visitor centers.

Please note that K-12 schools, afterschool programs, libraries, parks, and astronomy clubs are not eligible to receive physical toolkits.
Consider downloading a digital toolkit if your organization does not meet eligibility criteria. Digital toolkits will be available for download in February 2017 at:

Digital Toolkit

Digital versions of the 2017 toolkit will be available in February 2017, please check back then

About the Project

Learn more abut the project: ​http://www.nisenet.org/space


This material is based upon work supported by NASA cooperative agreement award number NNX16AC67A.  Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).