Engaging, hands-on classes for afterschool, in-school, and summer programs
Photo collage of students engaged in building robots, racing hand-built cars, working on computers.

STEAMLabs Make Learning Fun

Children learn to love science, technology, engineering, art, and math in our fun, project-based classes.  The Friendship Train Foundation brings STEAMLabs classes to local afterschool, recreation, and summer programs.  For more information about our foundation, please visit www.friendshiptrain.org

Question, Experiment, Explore
STEAMLabs are fun, hands-on classes that engage children in science, technology, engineering, art, and math activities. Participants learn to question, explore, experiment, reason, and apply abstract concepts to real world challenges. 
Design, Make, Create
In our classes, participants design and build rollercoasters, gliders, animated movies, stories, clay monsters, robots, bridges, cars, 3D jewelry, and all sorts of gadgets and gizmos.  Creativity and teamwork are emphasized in our engaging programs.

Photo of boy painting a clay sculpture

Super Scientists (I & II)

Interested in Groovy Science, Cake Chemistry, or Flight Physics? Super Scientists’ hands-on activities allow students to investigate topics such as polymers, gravity, chemical reactions, and more.  Super Scientists I, which is designed for younger students, connects science concepts to a variety of Dr. Suess books, making activities both informative and fun.

Photo of two girls doing a science experiment

Mini Engineers

Our younger students use their imaginations and explore simple engineering concepts while working in teams to design, build, and create. Using age-appropriate materials such as clay, pipe cleaners, Legos, and foil, Mini Engineers will design boats, assembly lines, mazes, towers, parachutes, and domes.

Photo of children with a teacher building wind powered cars

Junior Engineers

Students are introduced to engineering concepts through hands-on activities using simple materials such as marbles, rubber bands, cardboard, washers, and tape.  Junior Engineers move through challenges such as building roller coasters, gliders, bridges, and cars while working together to experiment, test, and make observations.

Photo of girl working intently on robotics project


Design and build real robots using the VEX IQ robotic system.  Students learn how to construct a basic robot and then modify it to complete various challenges, all while utilizing an array of gears, wheels, and other accessories.  Each class encompasses critical thinking, teamwork, engineering, functional design, and programming.

Photo of boys at computers designing video games

Code Breakers 

Coding is the language of technology. It is how our favorite character jumps over a wall or wins a star. Engineers write the instructions that tell computers what to do. In Code Breakers students learn the patterns used to write computer language using hands-on tools alongside computer programs. Students will become more than just users of
technology—they will become creators.

Photo of Makey Makey equipment

Makey Makey

Imagination and technology come together with Makey Makey, a creative introduction to computer engineering. Students experience the magic of Makey Makey by turning bananas into piano keys that play music and balls of Play-Doh into computer game controllers. The possibilities are endless—as is the fun. No programming experience needed!

cartoon illustration of boy riding a rocket in outer space


Designed as a sampler of STEAM activities, students in the STEAM Zone take on a variety of projects and challenges designed to explore the 21st century areas of science, technology, engineering, art, and math. Get ready for fun with activities that float, glow in the dark, ooze, and more.

photo of children in a makerspace workshop


Students are encouraged to develop problem-solving and engagement with science learning about water and ecology science which emphasize challenges specific to New Jersey, it’s beaches and waterways. Students will conduct experiments on cohesion, adhesion, capillary action, buoyancy and learn about freshwater and marine ecosystems.

photo of children in a makerspace workshop

Makerspace Workshops

Experience the growing movement of making, creating, and learning in our Makerspace Workshops, where experimentation and creativity are encouraged.  Students are provided with the tools and materials to make a variety of fun gadgets to use and take home—brushbots, marble runs, flashlights, and more.

We bring STEAMLabs to schools, recreation departments, and community centers throughout Monmouth and northern Ocean County.  Call (732) 508-5034 to learn how STEAMLabs can add value to your afterschool, in-school, summer camp, and recreation programs.


Our Foundation

At the Friendship Train Foundation (FTF), we invest in children by connecting them with enrichment activities that broaden their horizons, allow them to explore STEAM topics in a fun, relaxed atmosphere, and help them develop the skills they will need to be successful in the 21st century .  We believe that a strong and sustainable community depends on the success and well-being of its children.

STEAMLabs is a series of hands-on, interactive classes that help children learn about science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics in a fun, relaxed atmosphere. Through our partnership with various local businesses and organizations, we are able to bring cutting edge arts and technology to the STEAMLabs program.

At FTF, we are deeply committed to bringing enrichment opportunities to under-served communities in Monmouth and northern Ocean Counties. Help us deliver exceptional educational programming to all children. Your donation will make it possible for an underprivileged youth in New Jersey to participate in a variety of enriching after school educational and recreational activities that focus on a STEAM theme.

To learn more about our foundation, visit our website at www.friendshiptrain.org.

Since 2011, Friendship Train Foundation has partnered with Our Lady of Mt. Carmel School (OLMC) in Asbury Park, New Jersey, to provide students with afterschool learning and enrichment opportunities. Our mission is to help children discover their talents and interests, building their self-esteem as they strive to achieve their dreams.

The afterschool programs at OLMC expand students’ horizons through high-quality content in a safe, caring environment. More than 150 students in first through eighth grade participate under the guidance of dedicated staff and partners from the community. Students benefit from:

  • Healthy snacks
  • Academic assistance and tutoring
  • Hands-on enrichment activities focused around a STEAM theme (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Math)
  • Programming in the areas of literacy, physical education, character education, and parental involvement
  • Field trips
  • Summer programs

OLMC’s programs are funded through a variety of grants, from FTF and other private foundations, as well as from a 21st Century Community Learning Center grant from the State of New Jersey. In 2014, the program was one of three featured by the United States Department of Education for excellence in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) programming.