Programs for Schools at Boston Nature Center
At Boston Nature Center and Wildlife Sanctuary, we offer a multitude of fun and educational nature-based programs year round for students age 3 to age 18. Boston Nature Center (BNC) aligns all programs to the Massachusetts Department of Education frameworks and Boston Public Schools science curriculum. Math and literacy skills are included in many programs.
Whether the program takes place at your school, a local green space, or the BNC, we will work with you to develop a curriculum that meets your specific grade level needs and objectives. BNC offers both student instruction and educators’ professional development opportunities based on your request.
Through guided explorations of BNC’s 67 acres of woods, wetlands, brook, and meadows, students make inquiries, investigate, classify, think critically, and draw conclusions. Programs include activities such as using tools, gathering data, making observations, and journaling. Each program will be geared to the age level and curriculum needs of the students and focuses on a hands-on, minds-on approach.
Staff from Boston Nature Center will visit your class to provide students with a broader understanding of the natural world. Many of our school programs can be taught as a classroom presentation or outdoor exploration at your site. Programs are pre-planned with the classroom teacher and will include interactive discussions, observations, and specimen study if applicable. When possible, students will explore the woods and/or fields on school property to discover neighborhood environments. Inquiry-based skills and seasonal elements are emphasized.
BNC’s homeschool programs are designed to encourage children to interact with the environment through nature exploration and science-based learning and with each other through group building and games. Portions of the program will take place indoors, but most days we anticipate spending the majority of time outdoors at the wildlife sanctuary. Participants may also receive “home projects” each week to help further their learning and to share with their families.
BNC offers wonderful learning opportunities for preschool students, including the fully-licensed Pathways to Nature Preschool and the weekly Early Explorers class. Both the 2-, 3-, and 5-day Preschool and the a la cart preschool programs include a combination of hands-on activities, experiments, songs, demonstrations, stories, and nature walks. They’re designed to strengthen listening and observation skills while teaching students about the natural world. Professional development is also offered to preschool educators upon request.
Boston Nature Center provides professional development opportunities for teachers in natural history and ecology. All workshops are designed for active participation and practical application in the classroom. BNC’s education staff can design a workshop to meet your specific needs in professional development that align with Massachusetts Framework. Workshops can be held at the Boston Nature Center or at your school.