Where museum visitors become inventors!

SparkLab Logo

In an effort to show that invention is more than just that “Aha!” moment, Spark!Lab provides visitors with opportunities to explore the invention process and their own inventiveness through a variety of interdisciplinary, hands-on activities at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History. In an engaging and exciting environment, Spark!Lab demonstrates the central role that invention plays in American history.

Through the Spark!Lab National Network, a community of museum professionals dedicated to fostering inventive creativity bring this experience to families in their own neighborhoods. (Click here for Network contract details).

Current Affiliates hosting Spark!Labs are:

For more information on bringing Spark!Lab to your neighborhood, contact your National Outreach Manager.

About the Lemelson Center

The Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation invites children between the ages of six and 12 to create, collaborate, explore, test, experiment and invent. Activities for children and families incorporate traditional science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) with art, museum and creativity. The center is supported by The Lemelson Foundation, a private philanthropy established by one of the country’s most prolific inventors, Jerome Lemelson, and his family. The Lemelson Center is located in the National Museum of American History. For more information, visit

Three children participate in a SparkLab activity featuring a paper airplane and a vertical wind tunnel at The Children's Museum of the Upstate

Children enjoying the process of invention at The Children’s Museum of the Upstate. Photo credit: TCMU.