Plan your Indian Creek Nature Center field trip experience! At the moment you arrive, one of our friendly teacher-naturalists will greet you, give an introduction, and begin the program. Often you will break into smaller groups for a more personalized, hands-on experience for each child. All of our field trips include a major outdoor component; get ready to learn and have fun. You and your students are encouraged to enjoy Hazelnut Hideaway, our outdoor classroom, and trails after the program.

The fee is $4 per student during the school year and $5 per student in the summer. There is no charge for adult chaperones, except for maple syruping programs which are $2 per adult. Field trips are 90 minutes long, unless otherwise noted.

This fee includes free admission to exhibits and use of picnic areas. Our calendar fills quickly so call 319-362-0664 early to reserve your date. Visit our Scheduling and Policies section for more details.

If a topic you are interested in is not covered in our field trip list, we may be able to create a special field trip for you!

Fall

Honeybees | Grades K-5
Iowa Butterflies | Grades K-5
Plants and Animals | Grades K-3
Insects | Grades K-3
Plants, Seeds, & Pollinators | Grades K-3
Ponds & Wetlands | Grades 1-3 **NOT AVAILABLE FOR FALL 2019**
Weather | Grades 1-3
Geology: Rocks, Minerals and Fossils | Grades 4-5
Prairie and Woodland Field Study | Grades 3-5
Water Quality Study | Grades 4-5 **NOT AVAILABLE FOR FALL 2019**
Outdoor Skills | Grades 4-5
Honeybees | Grades K-5

NGSS: (Kindergarten): K-ESS2-2 Earth’s Systems, K-ESS3-3 Earth and Human Activity (1st Grade): LS1.A Structure and Function; LS1.B Growth and Development of Organisms; LS1.D Information Processing, LS3.A Inheritance of Traits (2nd Grade): LS2.A Interdependent Relationships of Ecosystems, LS4.D Biodiversity and Humans; (3rd Grade): LS1.B Growth and Development of Organisms; LS2.C Ecosystem Dynamics, Functioning and Resilience; LS2.D Social Interactions and Group Behaviors; LS3.A Inheritance of Traits; LS3.B Variation in Traits; LS4.C Adaptation; LS4.D Biodiversity and humans (4th grade): None (5th grade): 5-PS3-1 Energy

Common Core: (Kindergarten): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.B.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.B.5, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.C.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.C.7, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.A.1, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.A.2, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.B.3 (1st grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.1.2, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.1.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.MD.C.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.G.A.1 (2nd grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.2.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.2.MD.D.9 (3rd grade):CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.3.MD.A.2 (4th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.6 (5th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.6

Observe honeybees and their activities within the indoor observation hive, including worker bees, the queen and drones. Discussion includes honeybee life cycles, bee adaptations, the value of pollination, the relationship between flowers and bees, beekeeping, and bee products. You’ll also participate in a pollinator hunt and view outdoor bee hives. 

Iowa Butterflies | Grades K-5

NGSS: (Kindergarten): K-LS1-1 From Molecules to Organisms: Structures and Processes, K-ESS2-2 Earth’s Systems, K-ESS3-1 Earth and Human Activity (1st grade): 1-LS1-1 From Molecules to Organisms: Structures and Processes, 1-LS1-2 From Molecules to Organisms: Structures and Processes (2nd Grade): LS2.A Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems ; LS4.D Biodiversity and Humans; ETS1.A Defining the Problem, Creating Solutions; ESS2.B Mapping – migration maps; PS1.B Chemical Reactions (3rd grade): 3-LS2-1 Ecosystems: Interactions, Energy, and Dynamics, 3-LS3-1 Heredity: Inheritance and Variation of Traits, 3-LS4-2 Biological Evolution: Unity and Diversity, 3-LS4-4 Biological Evolution: Unity and Diversity (4th grade): 4-LS1-1 From Molecules to Organisms: Structures and Processes, 4-LS1-2 From Molecules to Organisms: Structures and Processes (5th grade): 5-LS2-1 Ecosystems: Interactions, Energy, and Dynamics, 5-ESS3-1 Earth and Human Activity

Common Core: (Kindergarten): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.B.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.B.5, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.C.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.C.7. CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.A.1, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.A.2, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.B.3 (1st grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.1.2, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.1.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.MD.C.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.G.A.1 (2nd grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.2.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.2.MD.D.9 (3rd grade):CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.6 (4th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.6 (5th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.6

Experience the wonder of one of our most enchanting pollinators! Learn about the life cycles of a butterfly, as well as the tactics butterflies use to protect themselves, including camouflage, mimicry & behaviors. Get an up-close look at milkweed plants, native flowers and monarch butterflies in the Nature Center’s own butterfly hoop house. Finally, learn about conservation issues and what individuals can do in their own yards to help butterflies.  In the month of September, it may be possible to tag a monarch before it begins the long journey to Mexico.

Plants and Animals | Grades K-3

NGSS: (1st Grade): LS1.A Structure and Function; LS1.B Growth and Development, LS1.D Information Processing; ETS1.A Defining & Delimiting Engineering Problems; ETS1.B Developing Solutions (2nd Grade): LS2.A Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems; LS4.D Biodiversity & Humans; ETS1.B Developing Possible Solutions (3rd Grade): LS1.B Growth & Development of Organisms; LS2.C Ecosystem Dynamics, Functioning and Resilience; LS4.C Adaptation; LS4.D Biodiversity and Humans; ETS1.A Defining and Delimiting Engineering Problems; ETS1.B Developing Possible Solutions (4th grade): LS1.A Structure and Function

Common Core: (Kindergarten): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.B.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.B.5, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.C.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.C.7, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.A.1, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.A.2, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.B.3 (1st grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.1.2, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.1.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.MD.C.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.G.A.1 (2nd grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.2.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.2.MD.D.9 (3rd grade):CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.6

Join us for a sensory exploration of the prairie and woodland habitats of Indian Creek Nature Center! Discover the diverse plant and animal life along the trails and amongst the prairie plants. Various activities will help you understand food chains, life cycles and the interdependence between people, wild plants, animals and the earth.

Insects | Grades K-3

NGSS: (Kindergarten): LS1.C Organization for Matter and Energy Flow in Organizations, ESS3.A Natural Resources, ESS3.C Human Impacts on Earth Systems (1st grade): LS1.A Structure and Function, LS1.B Growth and Development of Organisms, LS1.D Information Processing, LS3.A Inheritance of Traits (2nd grade): LS2.A Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems (3rd grade): LS1.B Growth and Development of Organisms, LS3.A Inheritance of Traits, LS3.B Variation of Traits, LS4.B Natural Selection, LS4.C Adaptation, LS4.D Biodiversity and Humans

Common Core: (Kindergarten): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.B.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.B.5, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.C.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.C.7, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.A.1, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.A.2, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.B.3 (1st grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.1.2, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.1.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.MD.C.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.G.A.1 (2nd grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.2.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.2.MD.D.9 (3rd grade):CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.6

Discover the vast diversity in the insect world, review insects’ basic characteristics, and explore the essential roles insects fulfill in our environments. Observe adaptations for survival, finding food and pollination. You will have an opportunity to look at the Nature Center’s collection of insect specimens and visit our indoor observation honeybee hive. We will discuss both the positive aspects of insects and the reasons people dislike insects as well as learn about life cycles and metamorphosis. Ample time will be spent outdoors exploring.

Plants, Seeds, & Pollinators | Grades K-3

NGSS: (1st Grade): LS1.A Structure and Function; LS1.B Growth and Development, LS1.D Information Processing; ETS1.A Defining & Delimiting Engineering Problems; ETS1.B Developing Solutions (2nd Grade): LS2.A Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems; LS4.D Biodiversity & Humans; ETS1.B Developing Possible Solutions (3rd Grade): LS1.B Growth & Development of Organisms; LS2.C Ecosystem Dynamics, Functioning and Resilience; LS4.C Adaptation; LS4.D Biodiversity and Humans; ETS1.A Defining and Delimiting Engineering Problems; ETS1.B Developing Possible Solutions (4th grade): LS1.A Structure and Function

Common Core: (Kindergarten): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.B.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.B.5, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.C.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.C.7, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.A.1, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.A.2, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.B.3 (1st grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.1.2, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.1.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.MD.C.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.G.A.1 (2nd grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.2.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.2.MD.D.9 (3rd grade):CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.6 (4th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.6

The Nature Center is the perfect place for hands-on learning about plants and flowers! Learn about habitat needs of plants, plant anatomy and purpose, seed and flower anatomy and purpose, and native pollinators and flowers. Go on a scavenger hunt to find examples of different seed dispersal mechanisms and pollinators. You’ll also learn about how animals use plants and seeds and how plants sometimes use animals.

Ponds & Wetlands | Grades 1-3 **NOT AVAILABLE FOR FALL 2019**

NGSS: (1st Grade): LS1.A Structure & Function; LS1.B Growth and Development of Organisms; LS1.D Information Processing; ETS1.A Defining and Delimiting Engineering Problems; ETS1.B Models (2nd Grade): LS2.A Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems, LS4.D Biodiversity and Humans, ,ESS2.A Earth Materials and Systems, ESS2.C The Roles of Water in Earth’s Surface Processes; ETS1.A Defining and Limiting Engineering Problems , ETSA.B Models (3rd Grade) LS1.B Growth and Development to Organisms, LS2.C Ecosystem Dynamics, Function and Resilience; LS2.D Social Interactions and Group Behavior; LS4.C Adaptation; LS4.D Biodiversity and Humans

Common Core: (1st grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.1.2, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.1.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.B.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.G.A.1 (2nd grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.2.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.2.MD.D.9 (3rd grade):CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.3.MD.A.2

A teacher-naturalist leads the way as students explore the wetland and participate in a variety of exciting activities, like dip-netting, listening to frog sounds, and more! Watch birds at the wetland, feel furs and pass around a turtle shell before looking for turtles in the water. Concepts covered include: wetland characteristics, importance, function, water cycle, habitats, adaptations, life cycles, food chains and diversity. Duration: 2 hours 

Weather | Grades 1-3

NGSS: (1st grade): LS1.B Growth and Development of Organisms (2nd grade): LS2.A Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems, PS1.B Chemical Reactions (3rd grade): LS2.C Ecosystem Dynamics, Functioning and Resilience, ESS2.D Weather and Climate, ESS3.B Natural Hazards

Common Core: (1st grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.1.2, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.1.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.MD.C.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.G.A.1 (2nd grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.2.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.2.MD.D.9 (3rd grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.3.MD.A.2

Explore forces that create the seasons, the water cycle, and weather. Learn how butterflies, vultures and other birds take advantage of thermals for migration . Experience the weather challenges migrating animals face during their long journeys. Go on a weather scavenger hunt, and collect data on temperature, cloud cover, cloud type, precipitation, and wind speed. You’ll also explore the relationship between weather and wildlife migration.

Geology: Rocks, Minerals and Fossils | Grades 4-5

NGSS: (4th grade): ESS1.C The History of Planet Earth, ESS2.A Earth Materials and Systems, ESS2.B Plate Techtonics and Large-Scale System Interactions, ESS2.E Biogeology (5th grade): ESS2.C The Roles of Water in Earth’s Surface Processes, ESS3.C Human Impacts on Earth Systems

Common Core: (4th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.6 (5th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.6

Participate in hands-on experiments exploring geologic concepts, geologic timeline, rock cycles, mineral testing, fossil formation and a fossil dig. You will also model layers of the earth and demonstrate plate tectonics, and examine rock specimens and fossils from the Nature Center’s collection. Duration: 2 hours

Prairie and Woodland Field Study | Grades 3-5

NGSS: (3rd grade): LS4.D Biodiversity and Humans, ESS2.D Weather and Climate, ETS1.B Developing Possible Solutions (4th grade): LS1.A Structure and Function, ESS1.C The History of Planet Earth, ESS3.A Natural Resources (5th grade): ESS3.C Human Impacts on Earth Systems, LS2.A Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems, ETS1.B Developing Possible Solutions

Common Core: (3rd grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.3.MD.A.2 (4th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.6 (5th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.6

Become scientists for a day as you use thermometers, wind gauges and other tools to complete a field survey. Collect environmental data, record data, make comparisons and use an identification key. Explore habitats including floodplain forest, oak savanna, conifer and prairie, and examine adaptations and food chains. Your group will also discuss the history of each habitat and the role of native plants in the health of soils and watersheds.

Water Quality Study | Grades 4-5 **NOT AVAILABLE FOR FALL 2019**

NGSS: (4th grade): None (5th grade): PS3.D Energy in chemical processes and every day life; LS1.C Organization for Matter and Energy Flow in Organisms; LS2.A Interdependent Relationships; LS2.B Cycles of Matter and Energy Trasfer in Ecosystems; ESS3.C Human Impacts on Earth Systems

Common Core: (4th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.6 (5th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.6

Measure the water quality at our wetland pond by testing the pH, turbidity, smell, color and temperature of the pond water. Data is recorded and used to predict which aquatic life forms would grow and reproduce in the conditions measured and observed. You will also use nets to complete a macroinvertebrate collection, identify collected species, and use data collected to determine water quality. Your group will examine adaptations of various aquatic insects and nymphs, as well as plant life and its role in the wetland. Duration: 2 hours

Outdoor Skills | Grades 4-5

NGSS: (4th grade): ETS1.A Defining Engineering Problems, ETS1.B Designing Solutoins to Engineering Problems, ETS1.C Optimizing the Design Solution (5th grade): ETS1.A Defining Engineering Problems, ETS1.B Designing Solutoins to Engineering Problems, ETS1.C Optimizing the Design Solution

Common Core: (4th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.6 (5th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.6

An outdoor skills experience with hands-on activities including but not limited to: fire building, use of flint and steel to start fires, shelter building, plants to avoid, and more. Many teachers choose activities to fit the themes in the following books that their students may be reading: My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George, Hatchet by Gary Paulson, or Cabin on Trouble Creek by Jean Van Leeuwen. If you are reading one of these novels, naturalists integrate themes and characters from the various books into the activities in which the students participate. If your students are reading one of these books and you have specific requests for related activities, please contact a naturalist directly. Duration: 2 hours

Winter

Maple Syruping | K-5
Plants and Animals | Grades K-3
Weather | Grades 1-3
Snowshoeing | Grades 3+
Geology: Rocks, Minerals and Fossils | Grades 4-5
Outdoor Skills | Grades 4-5
Maple Syruping | K-5

Seasons Offered: Month of March Only
Duration: 1 hour
Fee: $4/student & $2/adults including teachers & chaperones

NGSS: (Kindergarten): PS3.B Conservation of Energy and Energy Transfer; ESS2.D Weather and Climate; ETS1.A Designing and Delimiting Engineering Problems (1st grade): LS1.D Information Processing; ETS1.A Defining and Delimiting Engineering Problem(2nd grade): PS1.A Structure and Properties of Matter; PS1.B Chemical Reactions; ESS2.B Plate Tectonics and Large-Scale System Interactions (3rd grade): LS2.C Ecosystem Dynamics, Functioning and Reslience; ESS2.D Weather and Climate (4th grade): ESS3.A Natural Resources (5th grade): PS3.D Energy in Chemical Processes and Everyday Life; LS1.C Organization for Matter and Energy Flow in Organisms; ESS3.C Human Impacts on Earth Systems

Common Core: (Kindergarten): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.B.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.B.5, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.C.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.C.7, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.A.1, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.A.2, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.B.3 (1st grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.1.2, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.1.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.MD.C.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.G.A.1 (2nd grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.2.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.2.MD.D.9 (3rd grade):CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.3.MD.A.2 (4th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.6 (5th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.6

Learn about the lore and history of this unique North American heritage activity, and explore the Native American, colonial and pioneer history of ‘sugaring.’  You’ll learn about maple syrup as the first agricultural crop harvested in Iowa each year and the physiology and identification of maple trees. Then, visit the sugar bush (woods where the maple trees grow) and use tools (bit & brace, hammer, spile and collection bucket) to tap a maple tree. You’ll also tour the sugarhouse to learn how sap is boiled to create maple syrup, followed by a sample of the maple syrup made at Indian Creek Nature Center on a small ice cream cone. Concepts: Tree anatomy and physiology, seasonal changes, Native American culture, American history of maple syruping.

Plants and Animals | Grades K-3

NGSS: (1st Grade): LS1.A Structure and Function; LS1.B Growth and Development, LS1.D Information Processing; ETS1.A Defining & Delimiting Engineering Problems; ETS1.B Developing Solutions (2nd Grade): LS2.A Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems; LS4.D Biodiversity & Humans; ETS1.B Developing Possible Solutions (3rd Grade): LS1.B Growth & Development of Organisms; LS2.C Ecosystem Dynamics, Functioning and Resilience; LS4.C Adaptation; LS4.D Biodiversity and Humans; ETS1.A Defining and Delimiting Engineering Problems; ETS1.B Developing Possible Solutions (4th grade): LS1.A Structure and Function

Common Core: (Kindergarten): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.B.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.B.5, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.C.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.C.7, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.A.1, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.A.2, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.B.3 (1st grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.1.2, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.1.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.MD.C.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.G.A.1 (2nd grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.2.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.2.MD.D.9 (3rd grade):CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.6

Join us for a sensory exploration of the prairie and woodland habitats of Indian Creek Nature Center! Discover the diverse plant and animal life along the trails and amongst the prairie plants. Various activities will help you understand food chains, life cycles and the interdependence between people, wild plants, animals and the earth.

Weather | Grades 1-3

NGSS: (1st grade): LS1.B Growth and Development of Organisms (2nd grade): LS2.A Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems, PS1.B Chemical Reactions (3rd grade): LS2.C Ecosystem Dynamics, Functioning and Resilience, ESS2.D Weather and Climate, ESS3.B Natural Hazards

Common Core: (1st grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.1.2, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.1.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.MD.C.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.G.A.1 (2nd grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.2.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.2.MD.D.9 (3rd grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.3.MD.A.2

Explore forces that create the seasons, the water cycle, and weather. Learn how butterflies, vultures and other birds take advantage of thermals for migration . Experience the weather challenges migrating animals face during their long journeys. Go on a weather scavenger hunt, and collect data on temperature, cloud cover, cloud type, precipitation, and wind speed. You’ll also explore the relationship between weather and wildlife migration.

Snowshoeing | Grades 3+

Available with 5+ inches of snow

NGSS: (3rd grade): LS4.D Biodiversity and Humans (4th grade): PS3.A Definitions of Energy, PS3.C Relationship Between Energy and Forces (5th grade): ESS3.C Human Impacts on Earth Systems

Common Core: (3rd grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.6 (4th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.6 (5th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.6

Strap on snowshoes, and head for the trails! This outdoor snowshoeing experience includes discussion of the history of snowshoes. Your group will also discuss the value of snowshoeing as recreation and exercise while you explore the trails looking for signs of wildlife. Snowshoes are provided. Not enough snow on the ground?  Don’t worry! We have a plan to get you outside regardless of snow accumulation.

Geology: Rocks, Minerals and Fossils | Grades 4-5

NGSS: (4th grade): ESS1.C The History of Planet Earth, ESS2.A Earth Materials and Systems, ESS2.B Plate Techtonics and Large-Scale System Interactions, ESS2.E Biogeology (5th grade): ESS2.C The Roles of Water in Earth’s Surface Processes, ESS3.C Human Impacts on Earth Systems

Common Core: (4th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.6 (5th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.6

Participate in hands-on experiments exploring geologic concepts, geologic timeline, rock cycles, mineral testing, fossil formation and a fossil dig. You will also model layers of the earth and demonstrate plate tectonics, and examine rock specimens and fossils from the Nature Center’s collection. Duration: 2 hours

Outdoor Skills | Grades 4-5

NGSS: (4th grade): ETS1.A Defining Engineering Problems, ETS1.B Designing Solutoins to Engineering Problems, ETS1.C Optimizing the Design Solution (5th grade): ETS1.A Defining Engineering Problems, ETS1.B Designing Solutoins to Engineering Problems, ETS1.C Optimizing the Design Solution

Common Core: (4th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.6 (5th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.6

An outdoor skills experience with hands-on activities including but not limited to: fire building, use of flint and steel to start fires, knot tying, basic first aid, shelter building, plants to avoid, and more. Many teachers choose activities to fit the themes in the following books that their students may be reading:  My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George, Hatchet by Gary Paulson, or Cabin on Trouble Creek by Jean Van Leeuwen. If you are reading one of these novels, naturalists integrate themes and characters from the various books into the activities in which the students participate. If your students are reading one of these books and you have specific requests for related activities, please contact a naturalist directly. Duration: 2 hours

Spring

Plants and Animals | Grades K-3
Insects | Grades K-3
Ponds & Wetlands | Grades 1-3
Weather | Grades 1-3
Geology: Rocks, Minerals and Fossils | Grades 4-5
Prairie and Woodland Field Study | Grades 3-5
Water Quality Study | Grades 4-5
Outdoor Skills | Grades 4-5
Plants and Animals | Grades K-3

NGSS: (1st Grade): LS1.A Structure and Function; LS1.B Growth and Development, LS1.D Information Processing; ETS1.A Defining & Delimiting Engineering Problems; ETS1.B Developing Solutions (2nd Grade): LS2.A Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems; LS4.D Biodiversity & Humans; ETS1.B Developing Possible Solutions (3rd Grade): LS1.B Growth & Development of Organisms; LS2.C Ecosystem Dynamics, Functioning and Resilience; LS4.C Adaptation; LS4.D Biodiversity and Humans; ETS1.A Defining and Delimiting Engineering Problems; ETS1.B Developing Possible Solutions (4th grade): LS1.A Structure and Function

Common Core: (Kindergarten): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.B.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.B.5, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.C.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.C.7, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.A.1, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.A.2, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.B.3 (1st grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.1.2, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.1.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.MD.C.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.G.A.1 (2nd grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.2.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.2.MD.D.9 (3rd grade):CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.6

Join us for a sensory exploration of the prairie and woodland habitats of Indian Creek Nature Center! Discover the diverse plant and animal life along the trails and amongst the prairie plants. Various activities will help you understand food chains, life cycles and the interdependence between people, wild plants, animals and the earth.

Insects | Grades K-3

NGSS: (Kindergarten): LS1.C Organization for Matter and Energy Flow in Organizations, ESS3.A Natural Resources, ESS3.C Human Impacts on Earth Systems (1st grade): LS1.A Structure and Function, LS1.B Growth and Development of Organisms, LS1.D Information Processing, LS3.A Inheritance of Traits (2nd grade): LS2.A Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems (3rd grade): LS1.B Growth and Development of Organisms, LS3.A Inheritance of Traits, LS3.B Variation of Traits, LS4.B Natural Selection, LS4.C Adaptation, LS4.D Biodiversity and Humans

Common Core: (Kindergarten): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.B.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.B.5, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.C.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.C.7, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.A.1, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.A.2, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.MD.B.3 (1st grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.1.2, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.1.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.MD.C.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.G.A.1 (2nd grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.2.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.2.MD.D.9 (3rd grade):CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.6

Discover the vast diversity in the insect world, review insects’ basic characteristics, and explore the essential roles insects fulfill in our environments. Observe adaptations for survival, finding food and pollination. You will have an opportunity to look at the Nature Center’s collection of insect specimens and visit our indoor observation honeybee hive. We will discuss both the positive aspects of insects and the reasons people dislike insects as well as learn about life cycles and metamorphosis. Ample time will be spent outdoors exploring.

Ponds & Wetlands | Grades 1-3

NGSS: (1st Grade): LS1.A Structure & Function; LS1.B Growth and Development of Organisms; LS1.D Information Processing; ETS1.A Defining and Delimiting Engineering Problems; ETS1.B Models (2nd Grade): LS2.A Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems, LS4.D Biodiversity and Humans, ,ESS2.A Earth Materials and Systems, ESS2.C The Roles of Water in Earth’s Surface Processes; ETS1.A Defining and Limiting Engineering Problems , ETSA.B Models (3rd Grade) LS1.B Growth and Development to Organisms, LS2.C Ecosystem Dynamics, Function and Resilience; LS2.D Social Interactions and Group Behavior; LS4.C Adaptation; LS4.D Biodiversity and Humans

Common Core: (1st grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.1.2, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.1.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.CC.B.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.G.A.1 (2nd grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.2.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.2.MD.D.9 (3rd grade):CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.3.MD.A.2

A teacher-naturalist leads the way as students explore the wetland and participate in a variety of exciting activities, like dip-netting, listening to frog sounds, and more! Watch birds at the wetland, feel furs and pass around a turtle shell before looking for turtles in the water. Concepts covered include: wetland characteristics, importance, function, water cycle, habitats, adaptations, life cycles, food chains and diversity. Duration: 2 hours 

Weather | Grades 1-3

NGSS: (1st grade): LS1.B Growth and Development of Organisms (2nd grade): LS2.A Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems, PS1.B Chemical Reactions (3rd grade): LS2.C Ecosystem Dynamics, Functioning and Resilience, ESS2.D Weather and Climate, ESS3.B Natural Hazards

Common Core: (1st grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.1.2, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.1.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.MD.C.4, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.1.G.A.1 (2nd grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.2.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.2.MD.D.9 (3rd grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.3.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.3.MD.A.2

Explore forces that create the seasons, the water cycle, and weather. Learn how butterflies, vultures and other birds take advantage of thermals for migration . Experience the weather challenges migrating animals face during their long journeys. Go on a weather scavenger hunt, and collect data on temperature, cloud cover, cloud type, precipitation, and wind speed. You’ll also explore the relationship between weather and wildlife migration.

Geology: Rocks, Minerals and Fossils | Grades 4-5

NGSS: (4th grade): ESS1.C The History of Planet Earth, ESS2.A Earth Materials and Systems, ESS2.B Plate Techtonics and Large-Scale System Interactions, ESS2.E Biogeology (5th grade): ESS2.C The Roles of Water in Earth’s Surface Processes, ESS3.C Human Impacts on Earth Systems

Common Core: (4th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.6 (5th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.6

Participate in hands-on experiments exploring geologic concepts, geologic timeline, rock cycles, mineral testing, fossil formation and a fossil dig. You will also model layers of the earth and demonstrate plate tectonics, and examine rock specimens and fossils from the Nature Center’s collection. Duration: 2 hours

Prairie and Woodland Field Study | Grades 3-5

NGSS: (3rd grade): LS4.D Biodiversity and Humans, ESS2.D Weather and Climate, ETS1.B Developing Possible Solutions (4th grade): LS1.A Structure and Function, ESS1.C The History of Planet Earth, ESS3.A Natural Resources (5th grade): ESS3.C Human Impacts on Earth Systems, LS2.A Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems, ETS1.B Developing Possible Solutions

Common Core: (3rd grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.K.6, CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.3.MD.A.2 (4th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.6 (5th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.6

Become scientists for a day as you use thermometers, wind gauges and other tools to complete a field survey. Collect environmental data, record data, make comparisons and use an identification key. Explore habitats including floodplain forest, oak savanna, conifer and prairie, and examine adaptations and food chains. Your group will also discuss the history of each habitat and the role of native plants in the health of soils and watersheds.

Water Quality Study | Grades 4-5

NGSS: (4th grade): None (5th grade): PS3.D Energy in chemical processes and every day life; LS1.C Organization for Matter and Energy Flow in Organisms; LS2.A Interdependent Relationships; LS2.B Cycles of Matter and Energy Trasfer in Ecosystems; ESS3.C Human Impacts on Earth Systems

Common Core: (4th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.6 (5th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.6

Measure the water quality at our wetland pond by testing the pH, turbidity, smell, color and temperature of the pond water. Data is recorded and used to predict which aquatic life forms would grow and reproduce in the conditions measured and observed. You will also use nets to complete a macroinvertebrate collection, identify collected species, and use data collected to determine water quality. Your group will examine adaptations of various aquatic insects and nymphs, as well as plant life and its role in the wetland. Duration: 2 hours

Outdoor Skills | Grades 4-5

NGSS: (4th grade): ETS1.A Defining Engineering Problems, ETS1.B Designing Solutoins to Engineering Problems, ETS1.C Optimizing the Design Solution (5th grade): ETS1.A Defining Engineering Problems, ETS1.B Designing Solutoins to Engineering Problems, ETS1.C Optimizing the Design Solution

Common Core: (4th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.4.6 (5th grade): CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.5.6

An outdoor skills experience with hands-on activities including but not limited to: fire building, use of flint and steel to start fires, shelter building, plants to avoid, and more. Many teachers choose activities to fit the themes in the following books that their students may be reading: My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George, Hatchet by Gary Paulson, or Cabin on Trouble Creek by Jean Van Leeuwen. If you are reading one of these novels, naturalists integrate themes and characters from the various books into the activities in which the students participate. If your students are reading one of these books and you have specific requests for related activities, please contact a naturalist directly. Duration: 2 hours

Summer

Learning doesn’t stop in the summer! In fact, the Nature Center is brimming with insect and animal activity. Summer Group Experiences take place June through August.

Fee: $5 per student. No fee for chaperones.

Insect Safari & Nature Center Explore | Grades K-5
Wetland Exploration | Grades K-5
Critters and Jaunt | Grades K-5
Insect Safari & Nature Center Explore | Grades K-5

Hike the trails though the prairies of Indian Creek Nature Center to see what kind of insects you can find.  Insects will be collected, viewed and returned to nature.  A brief tour through the nature center and a quick look at the pond will round out this fun adventure.

Wetland Exploration | Grades K-5

Search the wetland to see what kind of critters you can capture with dip nets. Get a first-hand look at life cycles and have fun using magnifiers to help identify the unique ones.

Critters and Jaunt | Grades K-5

Get an up close look at the animals that call the Indian Creek Nature Center home.  A variety of animals will be shown and touched before heading outside for a short hike on the trails.

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