Field Trip Workshops

Field Trip Workshops are seasonal school programs at the Garden, featuring 60-minute hands-on activities aligned to the Next Generation Science Standards that focus on the plants and habitats found at the Garden. Each workshop guarantees an indoor lunch space for your group. Workshops must be booked a minimum of three weeks in advance, and full payment is due two weeks prior to your field trip.

Field Trip Workshops typically cost $140 per class. Available programs vary with the season and current bookings. Programs for grades preK – 12 have a maximum of 30 students. Chaperone-to-student ratios depend on grade level, with a maximum of eight chaperones per class, though generally a 1:5 ratio is ideal. Combining classrooms into fewer workshops is discouraged, but if necessary, split students and adults ahead of time into their scheduled workshops.  Schedule a Winter Field Trip Workshop at a reduced price of $100 per class.

Most Workshops are 60 minutes. We offer four workshops at 10 a.m. and four workshops at 11:30 a.m. on most weekdays, though availability depends on current bookings. Select your ideal date to see the number available time slots at 10 a.m. or 11:30 a.m. To reserve the dates for your programs, you can pay in full or select the $50 deposit option, which is due at checkout. Pondering the Prairie and Unearth Science Workshops are two hours long and have limited availability.

Before or after your Field Trip Workshop, your group may explore the Garden and take advantage of tram tours and exhibitions when in season. If interested, call the registrar's office at (847) 835-6801 with any questions about registration.

Please read the Guided Program Checklist and Policies before your field trip.

(O) most of the class will be taught outside; please dress for the weather (I) class will be an indoor lab experience

Field Trip Workshops 2019-20 Schedule

Fall Workshops: September 3 – November 1, 2019

PreK – K

Discovering Plants (O)

Junior botanists investigate plant parts and try to figure out how plants get what they need to survive. They observe patterns in the plant world and use different experiences—like acting out a plant’s life cycle—to represent the relationship between form and function in plants.

Weather Watchers (O)

What is the day’s weather? Students investigate weather patterns using tools to measure precipitation, temperature, and wind.

Grades 1 – 2

Surprising Seeds (I)

Ever wonder how plants disperse seeds? Discover and examine different seed shapes that enable plants to get around. Compare seed structures and functions and test different ways seeds disperse!

The Wonders of Worms and Soil (O)

Examine what role worms play in an ecosystem and investigate the components of healthy soil. Observe worms and their structures to understand why they are important soil-dwelling creatures. 

Grades 3 – 5

Flower Lab (I)

Why do plants make flowers? Students dissect flowers to examine their external structures. They gather evidence for how certain flower characteristics help attract pollinators so the plant can make seeds. Models are used to describe the life cycle of a flowering plant. 

DIY Hydroponics (I)

Students plan and carry out investigations using limited resources to build a plant-growing system without soil in the classroom.

Grades 6 – 8

Lake Investigations (I)

Students examine water samples from Garden lakes, using observations of biotic and abiotic conditions, chemical tests, and aquatic organisms to determine the lake’s ecological health. As they learn to identify and use aquatic macroinvertebrates as indicators of water quality, they build evidence to prove that changes to the conditions in this ecosystem affect the populations that live there. 

DIY Hydroponics (I)

Students plan and carry out investigations using limited resources to build a plant-growing system without soil in the classroom. By constructing explanations and designing solutions for a more sustainable approach to agriculture, students will develop possible solutions by evaluating constraints and considering cultural and environmental impacts. 

Grades 9 – 12

Water Quality Field Study (I)

Analyze environmental conditions by quantifying the general health of an aquatic ecosystem. This lab supplies students with evidence to explain how stable conditions produce stable populations. They will collect data to explain how environmental factors affect biodiversity on different scales. 

DIY Hydroponics (I)

Students plan and carry out investigations using limited resources to build a plant-growing system without soil in the classroom. By constructing explanations and designing solutions for a more sustainable approach to agriculture, students will develop possible solutions by evaluating constraints and considering cultural and environmental impacts. 

Pondering the Prairie: September 23 – 27, 2019

Grades 3 – 12

Pondering the Prairie* (O)

Winter Workshops: November 4, 2019 – April 10, 2020

PreK – K

 

Discovering Plants (O)

Junior botanists investigate plant parts and try to figure out how plants get what they need to survive. They observe patterns in the plant world and use different experiences—like acting out a plant’s life cycle—to represent the relationship between form and function in plants. 

Insect Investigation (I)

What do plants and animals need to survive? Observe patterns between insects and plants to determine what these living things need to live and grow. Students act as scientists, observing and classifying insects to differentiate from other living things.

Terrific Trees (I)

Learn to identify evergreen trees just like a scientist by examining patterns of their needles and organizing them into categories. Gather observations and evidence of how these trees have unique adaptations that help them survive in different seasons.

Grades 1 – 2

Nature's Needs (I)

Search for evidence that plants flourish in particular habitats and not others. Students compare the diversity of plants from different ecosystems and observe what specialized structures help them get what they need. 

Insect Investigation (I)

Discover what special features enable insects to survive. Perform simple investigations to observe the behaviors and preferences of some friendly insects.

Terrific Trees (I)

Learn to identify evergreen trees just like a scientist by examining patterns of their needles and organizing them into categories. Gather observations and evidence of how these trees have unique adaptations that help them survive in different seasons.

Grades 3 – 5

DIY Hydroponics (I)

Students plan and carry out investigations using limited resources to build a plant-growing system without soil in the classroom.

Flower Lab (I)

Why do plants make flowers? Students dissect flowers to examine their external structures. They gather evidence for how certain flower characteristics help attract pollinators so the plant can make seeds. Models are used to describe the life cycle of a flowering plant. 

Grades 6 – 8

DIY Hydroponics (I)

Students plan and carry out investigations using limited resources to build a plant-growing system without soil in the classroom. By constructing explanations and designing solutions for a more sustainable approach to agriculture, students will develop possible solutions by evaluating constraints and considering cultural and environmental impacts. 

Photosynthesis Lab (I)

Delve into the process of photosynthesis. Students use microscopes to study living plants and answer questions about photosynthesis. Students will then construct an explanation for the role plants play in the cycling of matter and flow of energy through all living things. 

Grades 9 – 12

DIY Hydroponics (I)

Students plan and carry out investigations using limited resources to build a plant-growing system without soil in the classroom. By constructing explanations and designing solutions for a more sustainable approach to agriculture, students will develop possible solutions by evaluating constraints and considering cultural and environmental impacts.

Human Impacts and Sustainability (O)

Responsible management of natural resources is key to creating a sustainable future for life on earth. Understand the relationships between land management and biodiversity, and witness how scientists and engineers can make major contributions by developing sustainable technologies.

Spring Workshops: April 13 – June 19, 2020

PreK – K

 

Discovering Plants (O)

Junior botanists investigate plant parts and try to figure out how plants get what they need to survive. They observe patterns in the plant world and use different experiences—like acting out a plant’s life cycle—to represent the relationship between form and function in plants.

Weather Watchers (O)

What is the day’s weather? Students investigate weather patterns using tools to measure precipitation, temperature, and wind.

Grades 1 – 2

 

Pollination Principles (O)

Discover the wonderful world of pollinators. They explore the Garden from the perspective of a bee or butterfly and act out how flowers are pollinated. Students might even observe pollinating insects in action. 

Water Bugs (I)

Investigate the amazing creatures living in our lakes. See how many flying insects begin life under water as larvae or nymphs that are similar to—but not exactly like—their winged parents. Discover what they tell us about the health of the water.

Grades 3 – 5

 

Partners in Pollination (O)

Discover the amazing connection between pollinators and flowers. Students examine pollinator behavior and the variety of strategies flowers use to attract pollinators. They observe examples of how certain flower characteristics appeal to particular pollinators, and they gather evidence to support their claims.

Mighty Macros (I)

Students examine organisms that live in the Garden’s lakes and use a model to understand how changes in the lake can affect the animals that live there. They learn how scientists count the number and variety of organisms they find in a lake to determine the water quality.

Grades 6 – 8

 

Lake Investigations (I)

Students examine water samples from Garden lakes, using observations of biotic and abiotic conditions, chemical tests, and aquatic organisms to determine the lake’s ecological health. As they learn to identify and use aquatic macroinvertebrates as indicators of water quality, they build evidence to prove that changes to the conditions in this ecosystem affect the populations that live there.

DIY Hydroponics (I)

Students plan and carry out investigations using limited resources to build a plant-growing system without soil in the classroom. By constructing explanations and designing solutions for a more sustainable approach to agriculture, students will develop possible solutions by evaluating constraints and considering cultural and environmental impacts.

Grades 9 – 12

 

Water Quality Field Study (I)

Analyze environmental conditions by quantifying the general health of an aquatic ecosystem. This lab supplies students with evidence to explain how stable conditions produce stable populations. They will collect data to explain how environmental factors affect biodiversity on different scales.

DIY Hydroponics (I)

Students plan and carry out investigations using limited resources to build a plant-growing system without soil in the classroom. By constructing explanations and designing solutions for a more sustainable approach to agriculture, students will develop possible solutions by evaluating constraints and considering cultural and environmental impacts. 

*limited date availability