Programs and Field Trips

eastman pond K

2019-2020 Programs
and Field Trip Offerings

All Grades
Live Animal Program  (30 minutes)
Animals in Winter (60 minutes)
Live Hedgehog program relating to The Mitten (45 minutes)

 Oaks of Eastman (60 minutes)
Town Forest (75 minutes)
Vermicomposting (75 minutes)
Mystery Fossil (75 minutes)
Bees Program (70 minutes)
Geology Tour (100-120 minutes)
Stream Tables (90 minutes)
StarLab (40 minutes)

Pond Trip (new version!) (3.5 hours including lunch)
Simple Machines (60 minutes)
What is a Watershed? (60-75 minutes)

   Length: 30 minutes
   Location: Your classroom

Teachers can request a variety of live animals for students to observe.
For example:
Captivate your students with a visit from Tort, our oldest (63 years) and largest resident. This yellow-footed tortoise comes from the Amazon. A Science Center staffer will bring the animal, describe how we keep her healthy and safe, and answer student questions. 

squirrel in snow

   Animals in Winter Program
   Length: 60 minutes
   Location: Your classroom and your schoolyard

How do wild animals survive a Massachusetts winter? Students explore three different animal adaptations - hibernation, migration, and staying active. We spend most of the program outdoors looking for evidence of animal behavior. This includes searching for tracks, nests, and live animals. Students are guaranteed to find something - prior to the exploration, the Science Center places animal artifacts where students will find them.

Hedgehog program 

     Live Hedgehog Program
     Length: 45 minutes
     Location:  Your classroom

What do different animals eat?  Using pictures of teeth and claws students will predict if an animal is an herbivore or a carnivore.  Then we observe a live omnivore (Shrek, our hedgehog).  Teachers are encouraged to read Jan Brett's The Mitten prior to the program.

Grade 1

Oaks of Eastman
Length: 60 minutes                             
Location: Newman, Eastman Area

This program works best in fall and spring when trees have leaves. We focus on acorns and oak trees as part of the life cycle unit. We'll start off with a play that allows all students to act out the life cycle of an oak tree. From there, we observe oak trees in various life cycle stages. We will use Eastman's outdoor classroom to open up acorns and observe the root and stem.

Vermiculture Soil Composting Program                    
Length: 75 minutes
Location: Your school (outdoors preferred, indoor possible)

What happens to a leaf once it falls from a tree? What happens to food we don't eat? What exactly is a vermicomposter? Working in small groups, students follow a "recipe" to create their own vermicomposter. They make predictions about what will happen over time, then make obserations to see if their predictions came true.

Length: 75 minutes
Location: Town Forest, Needham

eastman forest trip

This trip works best if the classroom teacher can find at least 3 adult helpers to accompany us. Learn how to "read a forest" by looking for evidence such as felled trees, bird nests, and rotten logs. Working in teams, we'll go on a forest scavenger hunt to learn more about reading the forest. Figure out creative ways to measure the girth of trees, and use a tool called "slice of silence" to help focus your observation skills. (Trip to town forest requires a 2 hour bus reservation.)

Mystery Fossildino dig
Length: 75 minutes
Location: your classroom

Students act as paleontologists and investigate and identify characteristics of a mystery animal that lived millions of years ago.

Evidence of an ancient volcano!
Students examine volcanic tuff at Claxton field in Needham.

Geology Bus Tour
Length: 2 Hours.
Location:  Needham and Wellesley.
Can be a standalone tour or done same day as Stream Table Activity

As part of the Changing Earth Unit, students visit natural formations and try to figure out what types of events created the structures they will observe. We'll start off in Wellesley where we will find a Volcanic plug (remains of an actual volcano). Next, we make several stops in Needham: The Eliot School rock (created by a river), Claxton Field (volcanic evidence), Rosemary Lake (created by a glacier).

Length: 75 minutes 
Location: Science Center.
Can be a standalone tour or done same day as Geology Bus Tour
As part of the Changing Earth Unit, students explore the creation of rivers and streams by using models called Stream Tables. Working in small groups, students first observe how a river forms. Once the river has established its path, students build a town and try to protect it from flooding.

StarLab Portable Planetariumstarlab dome
Length: 40 minutes
Location: Your school auditorium or cafeteria
Students observe the night sky inside an inflatable dome.  The class predicts and observes changes in the sky such as sunrise and sunset, moon rise, movement of the stars and constellations.

Queen bee
  Bees Program
  Length: 70 minutes
  Location: Your classroom.

As part of the Insects Unit, students use microscopes to examine parts of a honey bee and figure out how these parts help determine a honey bee's behavior and survival. Even within the same hive, honey bees have different jobs such as the queen, drones, and worker bees. Students also discuss how honey bees help plants, other animals, and humans survive.
Pond Trip (new version)
Length: 3.5 hours including lunch
Location: Eastman Area, Newman School and Science Center

Students collect data and organisms from a pond and learn about the ecosystem by identifying clues through observation.


eastman microscopes
In the Science Center Discovery Room, a Science Center staffer guides the students in discovering the diversity of living organisms within a drop of pond water. Students use magnification tools, classification keys to reveal and identify the microscopic invertebrates of the Eastman pond.

Length: 60 minutes
Location: Your classroom or your performance center
Demonstration that shows a variety of large scale simple machines and how they work.

What is a watershed? 
Length: 60-75 minutes
Location: Your classroom
Students observe large-scale 3D model of a watershed and experiment with ways to prevent water pollution.  (Lesson 8 of new Weather & Water unit)

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