BBA has a staff of experienced teachers who welcome you and your students to explore a variety of environmental topics. We can also bring many of our programs to your school, organization or library.
“Animals Get Ready” Puppet Show
PreK-2nd gr. | 1 hour and up
This program animates the concepts of hibernation, adaptation and migration with a story about local wildlife in winter using our new puppet theater. This program can be combined with Discover Fall and Discover Winter (2 class minimum/ 1.5 hr program). NH Standards: SC 6.2.6s; 6.1.6s; SS 3.12.6; 6.2.6s.
Animal Adaptation Stations
3rd gr. & up | 1 – 2 hours
Students brainstorm survival techniques employed by native wildlife. They rotate through several inquiry ‘lab’ stations on insulation, hibernation, food sources, beaks and other special adaptations. Two hour class performs an animal ‘Antifreeze’ experiment in winter or learn about tracking animal signs outside. NH Standards: SC 6.2.6s; 6.1.6s; 3.2.6s
K-6th | 1-2 hours
Explore the pond ecosystem! Aquatic food chains, life cycles, and water quality will be highlighted. Students will visit an active pond habitat and using nets and hand lenses, identify the life within. Upper grade levels can assess water quality by making measurements and identifying indicator species for “clean” and “unhealthy” water systems. A watershed model is available for assessing human impact on water resources. NH Std: Science 3A, 3B, 3D
Bats and Owls
Gr. 2 & up | 1-1.5 hours
Bat myths are busted in this class! And owls are neatly examined. This is a great class to experience near Halloween when bats and owls are often showcased inaccurately. We’ll turn students into aficionados on these often misunderstood flying creatures. Take a hike to look for owl habitat and roosting trees. Owl pellet dissection is an optional activity too. NH Standards: SC 3.1.6s; 3.2.6s
Beavers as Architects & all their Wetland Friends
PreK -1st | 1 hour
Beavers are one of nature’s most industrious engineers. See and learn how these mammals alter the environment to meet their needs and in so doing benefit many other types of wildlife. Students will visit a nearby beaver lodge or dam. They will differentiate between old and new beaver activity and enjoy learning about other wetland organisms. NH Standards: Science 3a, 3b, 4c.
2nd & up | 1.5-2 hours
Beaver Brook’s meadows and woodlands are filled with a variety of spring wildflowers and shrubs. Students will learn basic identification techniques and the unique adaptations of plants, pollinators, and flowers. Using hand lenses and identification worksheets, we will head to the trails and gardens to sketch, identify and explore. Students will also have the opportunity to taste some wild spring foods and discuss their importance to the Native Americans and early settlers after a long, cold winter.
Bugs, Beetles & Butterflies
K-5th | 1-2 hours
Using nets and bug boxes, learn about these beneficial but sometimes pesky animals that outnumber us a million to one! Learn about the anatomy, adaptations, sometimes odd habitats and always interesting life cycles of insects. Do field and forest insect collection and examination. NH Std. Sci. 1a, 3a, 3b, 3c, 3d
2nd & up | 1 hour
The temperature drops, the sun is lower in the sky, and the daylight period is shorter. What happens to plants? In addition to conifers, we’ll look at other trees, examine winter weeds that produce many seeds to ensure next year’s growth, and which plants’ roots may survive underground through the winter. Learn about how evergreens and deciduous trees have adapted for winter conditions. Upper grades may learn to identify major trees without leaves by using twigs. NH std: LS 1.1; SPS 1.1, 2.1; ESS2.1; PS1.
K & up | 1 hour
In the air, on the ground, and in water, reptiles ruled millions of years ago. Students will use models to put dinosaurs into a timeline and handle an extensive fossil collection. Which were the plant-eaters (herbivores) and which were the meat-eaters (carnivores)? How can we tell? Examine and discuss the specialized features of various species and theories of extinction. NH std: LS 1.1; SPS 1.1, 2.1; ESS2.1; PS1.
Discover Fall Sept-Nov
Discover Winter Dec-Mar | PreK-up
This is a sensory walk with emphasis on developing awareness of the interconnections of nature. Children will observe with sight, smell, touch, and sound, the changes around them that are signaling nature’s adaptations and transitions from fall to winter. Discover Fall highlights the process of plants and animals preparing for winter. Seeds, nuts, preparing winter homes, and migration are important themes. Discover Winter highlights the various survival techniques employed by plants and animals in the snowy woods and ice covered ponds.
PreK-K | 1-1.5 hours
This is a multi-sensory walk for young people, emphasizing the interconnections of nature. Children will practice some observation-sharpening skills. While walking they will use their sight, smell, touch and hearing to observe the changes around them. Highlight includes insects and pollination; NH Std: Science 3a, 3b, 3c
Fine Feathered Friends
K & up | 1.5-2 hours
Learn about the ways of birds, who they are, and how they endure the cold & snow of winter. Learn how differentiated they are for their special niches and for significant travel. Topics covered include: flight, feathers, and adaptations. Visit our Bird Observation Center where feeding stations attract our winter resident birds. NH Standards: Science 3a, 3b, 3c, 3d, Math 1, Language Arts 5
Gr. 4th& up | 1-3 hours
New England lands have changed dramatically over the last 400 years. Students will learn about land use changes and forest succession from the 1600s through the present. We will follow a trail from an old farm and its fields observing the various stages of natural reforestation that occurs. Along the way they will look for wildlife signs and explore predator/prey relationships through games and activities. Each student will receive a study book to take home. NH Standards: SC. 3.2.6s; 3.3.6, 6.1.6s; 6.2.6s; SS 3.12. 6s; 3.14.6s; 3.15.6s
Gr. 4th& up | 1-1.5 hours
This questing activity employs maps, compasses and clues for students to seek out the habitat needs of several different mammals: an omnivore, a carnivore, an insectivore and an herbivore. As with letterboxing, they will find hidden boxes in the woods with teeth, skulls, and food items that they bring back and share with the group which synthesizes the animal’s habitat needs. NH Standards: SC 3.1.6.s; 3.4.6s; 6.1.6; 3.2.6s SS3.10.6s; 3.14.6
2nd & up | 1-1.5 hours
Investigate the elusive owls in this hands-on interactive program. Delve into the winter cycle of the owls and defy some hibernation myths! Owl pellet dissection costs $4 extra per pellet. You might find a few rodents or a bird skeleton! NH std; CS 3.1 6s; 3.2.6s
K & up | 1-1.5 hours
Visit Beaver Brook’s sugar bush and learn about one of New Hampshire’s most famous industries and attractions. Learn the history and process of turning maple tree sap into syrup. Students will be guided through a sugaring demonstration area, and they will have the opportunity to set taps, empty sap buckets into the wood-fired evaporator and sample syrup made from Beaver Brook’s own trees! For K-2nd grade, this program includes an optional puppet show- “Wake Up Sugar! “ Available late February to early April. NH Std: PS 1; ESS 1; LS , 2; SS HI 2; SS:GE3; SS:HI 3.
Native Americans of the Woodlands
K & up | 1-4 hours
This program focuses on the vast knowledge Native Woodland people possessed of their environment in order to live compatibly with nature. Students will hike to our new wigwam and handle and discuss implements of Woodland Indian daily life. Students have the opportunity to play games that originated with Native American children, discuss the “Three Sisters,” identify some wild edibles and medicinal plants, and grind corn with a stone pestle. Learn how these people depended on the land, plants, and animals for their survival and the impact that winter had on their survival. NH standards: SS 3.14.6s; 3.15.6s SC 4.16.6s; 3.2.6s
Nature Sleuths: Who Goes There?
2nd-7th | 1.5-2 hours
A number of interesting clues have been found in the woods at Maple Hill Farm! Who left them? What do they tell us? Using their detective skills, students will observe these clues and document their findings in an effort to identify the creatures that left them behind. Once their observational skills are sharpened, students will receive special assignments and head out onto the trails to count, measure, collect, and observe wildlife signs. NH stds: SC 6.1.6s ; 3.2.6s; SS 3.14.6s
Orienteering: Using Map & Compass
4th & up | 1-4 hours
Learning map reading is very empowering and a valuable life-long skill. In this class, participants will learn how to read maps, use compasses and navigate on trails in search of an orienteering marker on our permanent course. The challenge increases the longer you stay! You always see and learn about new things along the trail. NH standards: SS 3.10.6s
Rocks, Minerals, and Gemstones
1st & up | 1-2 hours
This program provides an opportunity for hands-on investigation of the physical properties of rocks, minerals, and gemstones. Students will sort and identify rocks based on their specific characteristics and will classify them into three major types- igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic. We will also cover plate tectonics and the most recent ice age. The 2 hour class includes a hike to the Silver Lake fault.
2nd & up
BBA has a classroom set of beginner snowshoes that your class can rent when the snow is at least 4 inches deep! Get to know your students better and enjoy winter’s offerings by leading your class on a winter walk or scavenger hunt. A BBA staff member will join your group long enough to show you how to use the snowshoes. We can also provide you with scavenger hunt materials. Snowshoe rental is a discounted price of $4 per pair.
Snowschool–Snowshoeing & Winter Ecology
Beaver Brook Nature Center is the only sanctioned Snowschool site in NH! We are a parnter with Winter Wildlands Alliance.
Tracking Wildlife 2nd & up | 1.5 hours
A number of interesting clues have been found at Maple Hill Farm! Who left them? What do they tell us? Using their detective skills, students will examine these clues in an effort to identify the creatures that left them behind. Learn how to key out tracks of NE wildlife then take your skills outside to hunt for their stories. If conditions allow, BBA snowshoes can be used. NH Standards: PS 1.1, 1.4, 1.5; LS 1, 2, 4; SS:GE 3.1
Wetlands and Vernal Pools
2nd & up | 1-2 hours
Come to appreciate the amazing values of wetlands, and in the right season, explore vernal pools looking for spotted salamanders, wood frogs, fairy shrimp and egg masses. Identify different insects that you discover. Learn about the different kinds of wetlands and plants that love having “wet feet”.
Which way to the Lodge? Beavers and their wetland friends
2nd-6th | 1.5-2 hours
Why do beavers have red teeth? How is a beaver’s tail like a canoe paddle? How can they survive under the ice during winter? Beavers are incredibly well adapted creatures. While observing a beaver mount, skull, and various other items, students will learn about the beaver’s amazing adaptations. Students will visit a nearby beaver lodge and dam, learn how these mammals alter their environments to suit their own needs, and see how these changes benefit other types of wildlife. NH Standards: SC 6.1.6s; 6.2.6
Wild about Wildlife
K-6th | 1-1.5 hours
It may come as some surprise just how many kinds of wildlife there is in our own backyard. Come investigate the categories of wildlife in New England: mammals, birds, reptiles, invertebrates, amphibians and fish; where they live, and when they are busiest. We will examine animal mounts, skins, scat, skulls and other signs in preparation for a hike along Beaver Brook’s trails in search of New England wildlife. NH Standards: SC 6.2.6s; 6.1.6s; 3.2.6s
Wildlife in Winter & Their Adaptations
K –1st | 1 hour
2nd & up | 2 hrs
Sleeping, travelling or busy staying warm? What do wild animals in New England do to survive the winter? Discuss migration, dormancy, and the high calorie demand of remaining active in the cold. Examine and discuss animal skins, mounts, feathers, scat and tracks in preparation for a brief hike along Beaver Brook’s trails in search of signs of overwintering New England wildlife.
K-2nd: Woodchuck’s Dilemma —a puppet show about hibernation, migration and winter adaptations.
3rd grade-up 2 Hr. option includes outdoor animal antifreeze experiment and looking for signs of wildlife activity. NH Stds: PS 1,2; LS 1, 2, 3, 4; ESS 1, 2,3