ALNC UPDATES

Welcome! Our facility is open on weekdays from 9am to 4pm and on weekends from 10am to 2pm.

Wearing a face mask indoors is optional. Because we are a childcare facility and follow public health protocols, we have limited access to some public offerings and areas of our facility. We appreciate your patience as we work to find a healthy balance of access and safety for our community.

As always, our grounds and trails featuring self-guided tours are free and open daily from dawn until dusk.

Grades K-2

Field Trips are offered in Fall, Winter, and Spring!

Learning occurs naturally during our environmental education programs! Most programs fit well into a 90-minute program, but some can be adjusted to allow for longer exploration, additional activities, or more in-depth investigation. Click here for Field Trip program fees and logistics.

Please contact our School Program Coordinator at schools@aldoleopoldnaturecenter.org or
(608) 216-9378 with questions and to reserve a day and time for your field trip.


 

Food Chains

Worms recycle, groundhogs conserve energy and plants convert sunlight into sugar! Students are introduced to the principles of energy at work all around them as we turn over logs, dig into the soil, and dip nets in the pond. A hike through ALNC’s habitats will give students up close observations of the interconnectedness of Wisconsin’s plants and animals.

 

Habitats

Discover the integral part habitats play in the way organisms meet their basic needs in order to survive. In this program, students will investigate the prairie, pond, and forest habitats of the Nature Center, compare and contrast animals and plants, and recognize the diversity of life that supports the health of each ecosystem.

 

Incredible Insects

Students will take a hike through the ALNC prairie in search of pollinators and roll over logs to discover the hidden insects of the soil. Pond exploration may reveal aquatic insects at various stages of their life cycles. A puppet show illustrating insect metamorphosis will round out this exciting discovery of some of Wisconsin’s incredible insects!

 

Maple Syrup

Aligned with 4th grade curriculum objectives, but adaptable for grades K-2.
Early spring in Wisconsin! Students will experience the magic of maple syruping and why Wisconsin has the perfect climate “recipe” for sugaring! Students will learn basic tree identification, the science of sap flow, try tools to “tap a tree,” and learn the history of maple syruping in Wisconsin. The students will watch sap cook down to gain a greater understanding of why the Sugar Maple is the top tree to tap!

 

Seasonal Discovery

The seasons of Wisconsin will determine hands-on exploration as students learn how plants and animals adapt to change. Students may be watching birds migrate south as the Autumn leaves fall, animal tracks on the Winter landscape could lead students to discover a shelter in the pines, or as Spring awakens students might hear the songs of returning birds, awakening frogs, or witness woodland wildflowers bursting with color. Seasonal weather patterns help predict the adventure!

 

Snowshoe Science

Snowshoeing is a great way to experience the sights and sounds of nature in Winter. After introducing the history of snowshoeing and learning about various styles, each student will have the opportunity to hike the ALNC grounds in snowshoes! We’ll head out across the snow-covered landscape and practice basic snowshoeing skills and techniques. Along the hike, we’ll search for animal tracks and discuss the science and nature of snowshoeing.
Sit ski available for students with physical disabilities, giving them an opportunity to get outside and explore the snow packed trails alongside their classmates!

 

Sustainable Living

Recommended for Grades 2nd and up.
ALNC is located on land with a rich cultural history of people living in concert with nature. Students will learn about life before modern conveniences; challenges faced, problems solved and lessons learned. Hands-on activities will include seasonal harvest, food preparation, household chores, and games.
This program provides an opportunity for discussion on the importance of staying in touch with the natural world as each generation faces their own challenges, solves problems, and learns lessons.

 

Wetland Wonders

Swimming insects, calling frogs, silent turtles, and nesting birds are all possible discoveries in this wetland adventure. Students will be introduced to ALNC’s interconnected-wetland community through hands-on activities as they explore and learn why wetlands are referred to as one of the most biologically diverse and productive ecosystems in the world.

 

The World of Plants

Welcome to the diverse world of plants found in ALNC’s woodlands, wetlands, and prairie! Through habitat exploration and investigation, students will learn how specialized structures help plants to survive. Students will also see the results of Land Stewards and Citizen Scientists who work together to prevent the spread of invasive species and support plant health and habitat diversity.

Aldo Leopold Nature Center