Field Trip Season Kicks Off

May kicks off the fast paced school field trip season for The Nature Museum. Our Environmental Educator Jay DeGregorio continues a long tradition of supporting the natural science needs of educators in Vermont. Our school field trips and programs connect students and teachers to the wonders of nature, which we believe spark interests that last a lifetime. Kids tell us they love spending the day outside and exploring the museum’s curated treasures.

From now through mid-June, sixteen classrooms from twelve different regional schools will visit the museum for experiences that engage and enlighten students of all ages, while inspiring stewardship of our natural world.

Last week, Central Elementary School’s 2nd graders from Bellows Falls enjoyed one of our most popular field trip programs, Fort Building. Building forts is an excellent way to make observations, process possible solutions and develop team-building skills. Students determined the best construction materials, site and method for building a safe and effective structure in a beautiful clearing of white pine trees and big boulders. This lesson combines engineering and nature with the added benefit of encouraging the students to work together to build a fort capable of protecting a human.

Thanks to a generous grant from civil and environmental engineering firm Marquis & Morano, Central Elementary School (CES) students were able to tackle this engineering challenge for half of the day in the woods behind the museum before coming inside to explore the museum’s natural history exhibits.

Most of our fields trips include time for self guided tours of our amazing collection of natural specimens, touchable furs, feathers and bones. Our exhibits inspire students to learn more about our animal friends. Students crawl through our underground bear den; dig for fossils; find out about bats, bees, and catamounts; and learn about animal adaptations by dressing up as their favorite creature. The museum’s observational bee hive is also buzzing with real bees that also survived this winter! Kids love the up close and personal touch they get with wildlife at the museum!  

By supporting a child’s creative thinking, problem-solving and self-sufficiency skills with hands-on activity in nature, we believe there is real opportunity for a deeper level of learning. We’re excited to welcome hundreds of more students to our outdoor classroom before this school year ends. Unplugged and engaged!