Duke Energy Science Night for Elementary Schools

New for 2021 - Option to purchase kits

The Duke Energy Science Night Program has used an application and selection process to award a limited number of kits (150) at no cost to schools across the state - this process will continue for 2021. Since the program began in 2012, demand has skyrocketed to the point where we're only able to award kits to about a third of the schools that apply. We select schools based on the greatest economic need, diversity, and compelling stories from  the applicants, but want to expand the reach of this program as broadly as possible.

This year, schools are able to purchase the 2021 Duke Energy Science Night Activity Kit for $495*, with a discounted price of $445* for each additional kit purchased by the same school.

*Note that a 7.5% sales tax will also be charged.

What is a Duke Energy Science Night Activity Kit?

Funding from the Duke Energy Foundation allows NCSciFest staff to produce STEM activities and resources for use by elementary schools across the state. Traditionally, schools are encouraged and supported to use the resources to organize and hold a family science night during the month of April, bringing families together as a community to explore the amazing world of science as part of the North Carolina Science Festival.

In light of COVID-19, the NCSciFest team has created a Duke Energy Science Night activity kit that allows flexibility of use for April 2021, with activities that can be used:

  • during a traditional science night (if safe to host large gatherings),
  • in classrooms during a school science day (if schools are operating under Plan A or B), or
  • with students and families virtually (if schools are operating in Plan B or C)

What's included with a 2021 Duke Energy Science Night Activity Kit?

  • Nine activities aligned with NC Standards (including 6 hands-on activities with individual materials for 200 students)
  • Activity guides (detailed instructions, explanations of the science, and North Carolina connections)
  • Activity supplies (materials for 200 students to perform each of the activities)
  • Planning guide (helpful instructions on how to organize a science event)
  • Unlimited access to downloadable digital resources (including instructional videos and Spanish versions of documents)
  • Promotional materials (including a banner, flyer templates, and give-aways to build excitement)
  • Instructional webinars (including PD for teachers)
  • Email and phone support
  • Cost of materials procurement, packing and shipping

How do I apply for a subsidized Duke Energy Science Night Activity Kit?

Applications are now closed for subsidized Duke Energy Science Night Activity Kits.

Schools will be notified by August 28 and are expected to confirm their acceptance of the award by September 4.

How do I purchase a Duke Energy Science Night Activity Kit?

Preorders are now closed for 2021 Duke Energy Science Night Activity Kits.

You will receive an invoice and payment instructions via email. Prepayment is required by September 25 to complete your purchase and confirm your kit. We require payment in advance in order to procure the kit materials. Cancellations will not be accepted after September 25, 2020. Fulfillment will occur in the order we receive payments and will be in two waves: the first to occur in early February and the second in mid-March.

What can I do if I have questions?

Please contact the NCSciFest team by email (ncscifestschools@unc.edu) or phone (919-962-3274).

What is the 2020-2021 Duke Energy Science Night Timeline?A child watches a parachute fall

  • Aug 3 - Sep 4: Preorder period for 2021 activity kits
  • Aug 3 - Aug 21: Application period for 150 subsidized activity kits
  • Aug 12 - Aug 13: Informational webinars offered
  • Aug 28: Schools who applied for subsidized kits notified of status via email
  • Aug 31 - Sep 4: Selected schools return subsidized kit acceptance form
  • Sep 4: Deadline to preorder kits
  • Sep 25: Deadline to submit payment or cancel preorders
  • Oct TBA: Instructional webinar offered
  • Nov 30: Deadline to confirm the date you plan to use the activity kit
  • January 2021: Instructional webinar offered
  • February 2021: First wave of kits ship
  • March 2021: Second wave of kits ship
  • April 2021: Schools use their Duke Energy Science Night Activity Kits as part of the NCSciFest
  • May 2021: Deadline to submit evaluation and feedback


Email us at ncscifestschools@unc.edu with any questions or for more info!