Delivered by GSSM’s Center for Science Education & Outreach, SPARK! is designed to inspire an early interest in and awareness of STEM studies. In a series of after school workshops, 6th, 7th, and 8th graders follow their interests to learn the science or math concepts behind daily questions or curiosities.

Students can select any or all workshops to attend. See the full list below!

WHEN: February - April 2019 (See dates below)
TIME: 4:00–5:30PM
401 Railroad Ave • Hartsville SC
WHO: 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students
COST: Free!
Space is limited to 15 students

Register for Spark! 

Download a paper version of the registration form and workshop descriptions. (pdf)


  • After school workshops exploring a wide range of STEM topics, selected based on students' interests
  • An opportunity to connect with GSSM residential students who will serve as instructors and role models
  • Snacks will be provided

Spring 2019 Spark! Workshops

Math: Infinite Infinites
Tuesday, February 26, 2019

What is a number? Are numbers only used as methods of counting? What if we keep counting forever? Why can't we divide by zero or take the square root of a negative number? In this session, we will explore what happens when we break these mathematical rules. Participants will explore ideas like the Hotel Paradox and Ramanujan Series.

Biology: Mitosis
Thursday, February 28, 2019

Ever wonder how organisms grow into what they are meant to be? Ever wonder how sunburned skin can just peel off? Or how many skin cells you lose every day? In this workshop, participants will discover the process of cell division and mutliplication called mitosis. 

Physics: Forces & Work
Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Have you ever wondered what causes that feeling you get when going up or down in an elevator? What about when someone uses the term "work"? What does that even mean? In this workshop, participants will explore the world of forces and work, focusing on how these two ideas relate to everything we do!

Biology: Meiosis
Thursday, March 7, 2019

Ever wonder how animals create eggs? Ever wonder why no two people are exactly alike? In this workshop, participants will examine the process of meiosis and the resulting genetic variations including what can go wrong in the process.

Math: Triangles, Hexagons, & Origami, Oh My!
Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Do you like puzzles and geometric shapes? Do you like finding patterns in polygons? Through hands-on activities in this session, participants will discover how simple principles in geometry apply to origami. We will experiment with hexaflexagons, rotating tetrahedrons, and more! 

Biology: Photosynthesis
Thursday, March 14, 2019

Ever wonder why leaves are green and why sunlight is so important to plant survival? In this workshop, participants will delve into photosynthesis, the most important anabolic chemical reation that allows life to exist on Earth.

Physics: Circular Motion
Tuesday, March 19, 2019

What is one thing that most carnival rides have in common? They require you to experience circular motion! Moreover, some circular motion doesn’t even involve true circles, for example loops on roller coasters! But why do you feel the same way whether riding a roller coaster or carousel? In this workshop, participants will explore properties of this motion and the ways in which it is felt  in the world around you.

Chemistry: Electrons
Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Have you ever wondered why atoms can bond together? Have you heard of the fourth state of matter? In this lesson, participants will explore the concepts of electrons, charge, and the movement of electrons in a reaction.

Biology: Cellular Respiration
Thursday, March 28, 2019

Ever wonder what happens to your food after you eat it? Or why you even need to eat? In this workshop, participants will discover cellular respiration through the production of energy and carbon dioxide.

Chemistry: Energy & Heat
Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Have you ever wondered why water boils? Have you ever thought about what heat really is? In this lesson, participants will explore the concepts of thermodynamics, energy transfer, and catalysts in chemical reactions. 

Biology: Ecology
Thursday, April 4, 2019

Ever wonder about how many living organisms have been on Earth and how the Earth has changed because of them? Ever wonder how animals resond to changes in their ecosystem? In this workshop, participants explore the importance of maintaining balance in an ecosystem. 

Chemistry: Reactions
Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Have you ever wondered how much of a substance needs to be present for a reaction to happen? Did you know there are different types of reactions? In this lesson, participants will explore the concepts of reagents, molarity, and different types of reactions.

Biology: Natural Selection
Thursday, April 11, 2019

Ever wonder why dinosaurs no longer exist? Or why sea turtles, who were around since the time of the dinosaurs, thrived but are now on the endangered species list? In this workshop, participants will explore animal adaptations over time that ensure survival.

All courses are from 4:00-5:30 p.m. on the dates listed.

Register for Spark!