We aim to understand how to help young people recognize the value of science in their lives and take initiative to see the world in scientific ways. Our approach has been to design life-relevant science-learning programs that engage middle-school learners in science through pursuit of personally meaningful goals. In this paper, we analyze the case studies of two focal learners in the Kitchen Science Investigators life-relevant, science-learning program. Our analysis highlights ways to design life-relevant science-learning programs to help learners connect science to their everyday lives in meaningful ways. Our findings point to the ways in which learners' dispositions develop, which have implications for the design of programming and learning environments to promote the development of scientific dispositions.