Nature-based Field Trips (Virtual)
Mondays–Fridays, 10am, 11am or 1pm
Field trip length: approximately 40 minutes
Fee per Program: Tier A-$94 | Tier B-$75 | Tier C-$56
Group Size: up to 22 participants, including at least one teacher
These live-stream virtual field trips use Google Meets or Zoom to offer interactive, inquiry-based learning opportunities for school classrooms grades K-6. Upon registration, suggested activities and resources will be provided to help engage students in the learning activities prior to participating in the live-stream session.
All of our virtual field trips are synchronous. The classroom teacher must attend the field trip with their class. Here are some different options for meeting with your class:
- One 40-minute session
- Two 20-minute sessions
- We may also tailor our sessions to meet your class’s needs! Contact Helen Ann Sephton
When registering, choose your first and second date and time preference and one of the Virtual Nature-based Field Trips themes below:
NEW!!! Engineering Design: Modeling Solutions to Real World Problems
Grade Levels: 3 – 8
The Hitchcock Center’s Living Building is an exciting teaching tool for sustainability.
Our building demonstrates how natural systems can inform how we design and build for a healthy planet. In this virtual field trip, we will begin with a pre-recorded video tour of our building’s water system. We will learn how our system keeps our water use local, in a way that benefits people and the environment.
Students then participate in a hands-on design challenge to solve a human problem.
Choose one of the Engineering and Design Challenges appropriate for your students from the menu below. The STE standards are also given for each challenge:
- Rainwater Capture – Students are presented with a real world problem – a shortage of water. They are challenged to create a model of a roof to capture and store rainwater and snowmelt. They must meet certain criteria and work within the constraints of materials and time. Students will test and compare solutions, and discuss improvements to the model. Standards | Recommended Grades: 3-5
- Water Filtration – Students will be presented with a situation where a human practice has polluted drinking water. They will choose appropriate materials to design and build a water filtration system. Students will compare different systems and discuss improvements to their designs. Standards | Recommended Grades: 3-5
Mountains and Valleys
Ages 9–10 or Grade 4–5
Discover the stories in the stones around us! The Holyoke Range can tell us much about how the Earth’s crust is shaped. It is a geologically unique area, where we can find evidence of shifting tectonic plates, earthquakes, volcanoes, glaciers, and erosion, all in one place! In this virtual field trip, we will first learn how the everyday landscape provides intriguing clues to the past in a pre-recorded video. Together, we will then explore local geology through video, hands-on experimentation and a live stream video session. STEM standards
Ages 5–9 or Grades K–4
What makes an animal an insect? What role do insects play in our world and how are they important to people? In our pre-recorded video, we will become entomologists with a Hitchcock educator to adventure into the woods and search for insects. Learn how to identify an insect, where to find them, and the tools you’ll need to collect them. Plus, learn a ton of cool insect facts along the way! We will also come together in an interactive live-stream video session to share our experiences with insects, observe live teaching insects close up, learn about their complex life cycles, and participate in identification games and quizzes. STEM standards
Life in a Pond
Ages 5–10 or Grades K–5
A pond is much more than frogs and fish! In a pre-recorded video, we will demonstrate the beautiful web of pond life from algae and microscopic organisms to insect larvae and amphibians. We will learn how to make a simple pond net, read about what makes a pond a pond, and go on a virtual pond tour. You will be given a list of simple equipment to use to successfully collect pond animals, and will be shown how to safely collect and release these animals. Then we will share our experiences through an interactive live-stream session where we will get a close-up look at pond invertebrates (animals without backbones), do a scientific drawing, and experiment with the surface tension of water. STEM standards
Amazing Animal Adaptations
Ages 5–9 or Grades K–4
How do animals survive in the wild? We will focus on the amazing diversity of life on the planet and in our area. In our pre-recorded video, participants will be introduced to live teaching animals by tuning into the talk show “Good Morning Animals.” Students will learn about how biology and behavior helps animals survive in habitat in unique ways. In our interactive live-stream video session, we will come together to share our experiences with local animal adaptations in addition to observation of our teaching animals and stuffed mounts. We will also explore the concept of biomimicry and human adaptations through conversation and games. STEM standards
Given this time of financial hardship for our community and our organization, we are offering a new sliding scale fee structure aimed to provide greater flexibility in choosing a price that is right for you and your class.
- Tier A: The fee is set 25% higher than what it costs to run the program and helps to support those who cannot afford the full cost of the program.
- Tier B: The fee is set to cover 100% of the program costs.
- Tier C: The fee is set at 25% less than what it costs to run the program.