School Programs : Grade Specific Field Trips and Mini-Hikes
The Arboretum at Flagstaff offers grade-specific curricula in the natural sciences for students pre-school through high school. All field trips are experiential and place-based and led by trained environmental educators.
All lessons are aligned with state and national scientific education standards, take place in an outdoor classroom, and are designed to connect students to the nature around them.
And don't forget about our Raptor Program! Twice daily except Tuesdays, at noon and 2pm, experience native species of birds of prey up close with wildlife educators from Airborne Raptors.
- Fee: $5 per participant (includes Arboretum admission)
- Length: 1.5-2 hours (1.5 grade-specific program plus optional mini-hike through arboretum)
- Minimum participants: 10
To reserve a date for your class, call (928) 774-1442, ext.110. If you leave a message, please include your phone number and e-mail, the date and time you would like to visit, and your group’s size and grade level.
Photo by Haley Nishida
All Grades: Mini-Hike. The 30 minute mini-hike will take place in the areas of the arboretum not covered in the field trip portion. These areas include the greenhouse, the pond, the herb garden, and the trails connecting these areas. Mini-hikes will be tailored individually for each group.
Preschool / Kindergarten: The Five-Alive Senses. Students will be led through the Arboretum grounds where they will explore all of their five senses. Highlights include listening to the frogs and birds by the pond, smelling plants in the Herb Garden, and feeling different types of conifers on the woodland path.
Grade 1: Life in the Trees. This program introduces students to the concept of habitat and explores the relationships between Abert's Squirrels, birds, insects and the Ponderosa Pine. Students will spend their time in the forest looking for clues about animal-plant interactions taking place above them and right beneath their feet.
Grade 2: Riparian Rascals. Students will learn about and compare the different stages in the development of a Western Chorus Frog and a Dragonfly/Damselfly. They will spend their time at the pond investigating the lives of these creatures, playing games and looking for signs of life in the pond.
Grade 3: Water Bug Naturalist. Students will learn about the importance of riparian areas to plants and wildlife in Arizona as well as the adaptations needed for living in the water. They will explore and identify aquatic invertebrates in the Arboretum's riparian areas. They will share their findings with classmates and will have the opportunity to use a micro-camera.
Grade 4: Hardy Adaptations. Students find out how plants are able to thrive in our arid, high-elevation ecosystem. They will identify the characteristics of plants and trees that help them survive the elements. This program includes hands-on activities that help build observation skills and promote critical thinking about the plant world. A trip to the greenhouse will further assist in learning about plant adaptations.
Grade 5: Fifth Grade Foresters. Students will learn about forest health and will be able to recognize indicators of healthy and unhealthy forests. Students will be asked to be foresters for a day, and in doing so, they will evaluate certain sections of the forest and offer solutions about how to improve the health of the forest.
Middle and High School Programs: Please contact the Director of Education at (928) 774-1442 ext. 110 for information.