6th-8th Grade

All of the programs described for younger students can be modified for middle school and high school. However, for older groups, we prefer to discuss program options and create custom programs that compliment classroom curriculum. Please contact the Naturalist staff to discuss how we can best serve your group's curriculum needs.

Call 612-861-9365 for more information.

Next Gen Standards and Wood Lake Curriculum 

image1Birds Around Us (All Seasons) 
Look at birds' amazing adaptations for survival in various habitats. Study real bird parts, learn bird behavior and identification skills, and see what kind of birds can be seen at Wood Lake Nature Center. (Lesson adapted for age groups)

Cross-Country Skiing (Winter) 
Learn the basics of cross-country skiing with an indoor demonstration followed by practice outdoors. Snow conditions permitting. 

Endangered Species (All Seasons) 
Discover the major causes of why animals become endangered due to habitat loss, human impact, and climate change. Understand how humans can help these animals from becoming endangered. Then go on a hike to learn about animals and their need in the habitats around Wood Lake.

Flight (Spring, Summer, Fall) 
Discuss and see examples of the four types of flight and go outside to experiment with boomerangs and water rockets.

Human Impacts on Earth’s Resources (Fall) 
Identify the many ways that humans impact earth’s natural resources such as energy, material, renewable and nonrenewable resources. Learn the key elements of conservation and sustainability to protect biodiversity.

Insect Study (Spring, Summer, Fall) 
Using sweep nets and magnifying ‘bug boxes’ to find and observe insects and other invertebrates in the prairie and forest. Use classification key to understand the unique adaptations of these mini beasts.

Invasive Species (Fall) 
Learn what an invasive species is and how they decrease biodiversity in an ecosystem. Help us restore our native species at Wood Lake through a service project by safely removing Buckthorn trees from our forest.

Light and Energy (All Seasons) 
Observe properties of light and energy through hands-on experimentation and a fun game to test vocabulary knowledge.

Maple Syruping (March) 
Learn about the natural and cultural history of maple syruping. Identify and tap maple trees, collect sap, and turn syrup into a maple sugar treat. (Lessons adapted for age group)

Marsh Explorers (Spring, Summer, Fall) 
Discover the incredible variety of animals, insects, and plants that live in the marsh. Dip into the marsh with a collection cup to explore the hidden depths of this diverse wetland. (Lessons adapted for age group. Older students will examine caught specimens under microscopes).
deer browse survey
Predator/Prey (All Seasons) Compare the adaptations of predators and prey by looking at skulls of herbivores, carnivores, and omnivores. Play a game to simulate predator/prey relationships and watch a video of predators in action. 

Experience the joy of walking on top of snow, conditions permitting.

Soil, Rocks, & Minerals (Spring, Summer, Fall) Learn the difference between igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic rocks and compare their characteristics. Discover how they turn into a key component of soil and explore soil’s other ingredients.(Lesson adapted for age group).

Survival Shelters (All Seasons) 
Learn about the basics of survival and then test survival skills by making a shelter out of natural materials.

Water Cycle (All Seasons)
Learn how water moves around the planet by becoming a water molecule and going on an incredible journey around the globe. Discuss how human
s affect water supply and what actions we can take to protect our water close to home using a ground water model.

Water Quality (Spring, Summer, Fall) 
Test the quality of water at Wood Lake with testing kits and an up-close look at living water quality indicators.

Weather (All Seasons) 
What is weather and where does it come from? You students will be able to answer these questions and learn to predict a weather forecast using thermometers, anemometers, compasses, and identify cloud types. 

Wild Edible Plants (Spring, Summer, Fall) 
Discuss how to identify, collect, and prepare wild edible plants. Sample some of Wood Lake’s wild edibles and prepare a simple wild edible recipe.