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Educational and School Year Programs

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Mount Rainier Nature & Recreation Center Curriculum-Based Programs

Mount Rainier Nature & Recreation Center offers specific curriculum based programs for elementary school groups. Most programs generally last about 45 minutes. All programs are by reservation only. A limited number of adult chaperones and teachers will be admitted free, additional adults will be charged the same rate as students. Some of the programs may include a craft, game, hike, or story. Call for reservations. Listed below are the program titles, descriptions, and grade levels.

Educational Programs

Program Requests
Mount Rainier Nature Center offers curriculum-related programs for school groups as well as Community Outreach programs held at your location. For program reservations, please call the nature center. Our multipurpose room can hold 100 people. Larger group can be divided. We have a playground and places to eat lunch outside. There is no fee for walk-in visitors and self guided tours except during special events. Walk-in groups are encouraged to call first.
Programs presented at Mount Rainier Nature Center (minimum 10 people)
Prince George's and Montgomery County Schools $2 per person
Schools in all other counties
$3 per person

Programs presented at your location (minimum 10 people)
Prince George's and Montgomery County Schools $3 per person
Schools in all other counties
$4 per person

Educational Programs Offered

Most of our programs can be modified for all grade levels.

Live Animal Show (Pre-K & up)
Using a variety of live animals, students will enjoy a hands-on learning experience as they discover where the animals live, what they eat, how they move, how they adapt to survive, and much more.

Animal Homes (Grades Pre-K-2nd)
Learn about the habitats and homes of animals. Fun interactive activities, Multimedia visuals, and nature items will help the students learn about their natural world.

Sense of Nature (Grades Pre-k & K)
Students will use their five senses to learn about their natural environment. They will also learn about the different shapes found in nature. Fun interactive activities, visuals, and nature items will help the students learn about their natural world.

Dinosaurs and Fossils (K & 5th)
Travel back in time to discover the secrets of prehistoric life. Investigate prehistoric plans and animals using visual aids, fossils, games and hands-on activities.

Creepy Crawlers (Grades 2-8)
Explore the world of insects and how they benefit the environment with a special focus on life cycles and metamorphosis of butterflies, moths, and amphibians. Make scientific observations using multimedia, visual aids, and specimens.

Geology & Rocks (Grades 2-8)
Classify rocks by their properties: size, weight, color, texture, and shape. A hands-on presentation examines nature's building blocks and explores how these natural resources are used.

Vertebrates (Grades 2-8)
Using multimedia, visual aids, and live animals, explore the characteristics and habitats of vertebrates: mammals, reptiles, birds, fish, and amphibians. Focus will be on the adaptations for survival: locomotion, diet, body coverings, communications, reproduction, migration, hibernation, and dormancy.

Wetlands and the Bay (Grades 2-8)
Focus on various wetlands, their functions and their importance to the health of the Chesapeake Bay. Hike along the creek or lake and discuss the water cycle, watersheds, pollution, erosion, and other factors affecting wetlands. Use charts, nets, and trays to study live aquatic animals and plants. Students should wear old clothes and shoes that can get wet.

Plants & Photosynthesis (Grades 2-8)
This is a grade appropriate exploration program with an emphasis on plant structure, functions, characteristics, and reproduction. Learn the importance of green plants and energy flow, the process of photosynthesis, and the respiration cycle. For an additional fee, students can create a plan of their own. Students will hike to an area to study biotic and abiotic features of forest ecosystems using visual aids, multimedia, and measuring tools. Team up and play a competitive game.

Indians of Southern Maryland (Grades 4-8)
Examine artifacts and tools to learn about historical Eastern Woodland Indian cultures and how they used natural resources. Multimedia and outdoor activities included.