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Education Programs: Families

Always free. Always fun.

Foster a natural curiosity in your family for science and the great outdoors with our programs for families with children aged 3-12. Experience the topic of the day through discovery hikes, stories, games, and nature art projects. Programs are led by environmental educators. Registration is not required unless designated otherwise. For groups larger than 10 people, please provide advance notice so we can plan accordingly. Programs take place both in the Bunker Interpretive Center, and out in the Ecosystem Preserve, so please come prepared for walking outside in a variety of weather conditions.

First Saturdays

Spots, Scales, Stripes & Skin
April 4, 2015 at 10:30 am - 12 pm
Educator: Emily Harrell, Program Leader

Discover the different types of body coverings that vertebrates have, and why they are so colorful. Then learn how spots, stripes, and spines protect these animals. Meet our live critters, feel feathers and soft fur, and play some exciting games to test your new knowledge! This program is recommended for families with children ages 4-12.

Spring Break 2015

Looking for something to do during spring break? Come visit us at the preserve! As always, you are invited to stop in the Bunker Interpretive Center at your leisure. Together, children and their parents/caregivers can read a storybook or two, star in their own puppet show, play a fun game of nature bingo together, and go on a hike through the preserve. We are open Monday - Friday at 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.

We also offer a variety of our favorite educational programs in which children and their parents/caregivers can participate at various times throughout the week. All programs are free; no pre-registration is required unless otherwise noted. An adult is required to accompany all children at all programs. Programs will take place in light rain, so dress for the weather and walking the trails.

Migration Madness!│Monday, April 6│10:30 a.m. - 12 p.m.
Spring is here and our feathered friends are returning from their winter homes. Discover why birds migrate and the dangers they face along their journeys, as we play some fun migration games and observe birds throughout the preserve.
This is a hands-on program recommended for families with children ages 3-12. Guest educator: "Miss Nancy" McIntyre, Naturalist.

Lost in the Woods Movie & Spring Scavenger Hunt│Monday, April 6│3 - 4:30 p.m.
Watch the delightful movie Lost in the Woods by Carl Sams II on our big screen, and learn more about the first days of a young fawn’s life in the spring. Then participate in a family scavenger hunt through the woods to see if you can spy the many creatures that are featured in the movie. This is a perfect program for families with children ages 3-12 years old.

Spring Discovery Hike│Tuesday, April 7│9 - 10:30 a.m.
The birds are singing and the sun is shining. Join us as we discover signs of spring on a walk through the Ecosystem Preserve. This program is great for families with children of all ages, and adventurous adults.

Beautiful Blooms Art Lab│Tuesday, April 7│3 - 5 p.m.
Throughout time, flowers have been painted, sculpted and photographed by artists and scientists alike. Come learn more about the science behind these beautiful blooms, and create your own flora art pieces to take home. We will learn how to create a variety of paper flowers and tissue paper flower collages. This family workshop is open to 3rd-8th grade students accompanied by an adult.

Animal Games│Wednesday, April 8│10:30 a.m. - 12 p.m.
From bats to deer to squirrels, we will learn about a variety of survival techniques that these animals use to both protect themselves and capture their prey as we play our favorite animal games. We will be outside, so dress for the weather and wear your running shoes. This is a perfect program for families with children ages 3-12 years old. Guest educator: "Miss Nancy" McIntyre, Naturalist.

Calling All Frogs: Frog Songs in the Spring│Wednesday, April 8│7 - 8:30 p.m.
Come learn about Michigan frogs and their special calls with Miss Jeanette. Become part of a frog chorus and spend time exploring some of the ponds on the preserve, listening for frog calls at dusk. Program will occur in light rain because frogs love the wet weather! Recommend for families with children aged 5-12 years.

Birding 101│Thursday, April 9│8:30 - 10 a.m.
Spring is here and the birds are singing.  Join us on a morning bird walk to search for birds throughout the preserve. We will start by learning how to use binoculars and field guides for identification, and then spend the rest of the morning in the preserve watching our feathered friends and listening to their beautiful songs. A limited number of binoculars and bird field guides will be available for use (first come, first served). This family workshop is open to 3rd-8th grade students accompanied by an adult.

Spots, Scales, Stripes & Skin│Thursday, April 9│3:30 - 5 p.m.
Discover the different types of body coverings that vertebrates have, and why they are so colorful. Then learn how spots, stripes, and spines protect these animals. Meet our live critters, feel feathers and soft fur, and play some exciting games to test your new knowledge! This program is recommended for families with children ages 4-12.

Michigan Mammals Hike│Friday, April 10│11 a.m. - 12 p.m.
This program has been canceled due to a scheduling conflict.

Nests & Eggs│Friday, April 10│2 - 3:30 p.m.
Participate in a variety of hands-on activities including listening to a story, and observing real nests and eggs to learn more about the types of animals that create nests and lay eggs. Have fun looking for nests in the preserve and creating your very own nest. Great for all ages acompanied by an adult.

making birdhouse

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