Field Studies

Field studies coupled with classroom activities are an integral part of Meaningful Watershed Educational Experiences. Find a field study program that gets your students' feet wet and hands dirty.

Find a Program Near You

Begin by choosing the criteria for your search. Matching field study programs will be displayed as pin-points on the map below. Click on a pin-point for details about each program. Be sure to scroll through all your results using the "next" button at the bottom of the page.

If you know of a great field study not included in the Bay Backpack let us know by suggesting a field study.

Create Your Own Field Study

Learn how to create your own field study at a local park or on your school grounds.

All Studies by Location
Records: 163

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Field Studies > Day Trips   > habitat and niche  
1 - 25 of 163

Growing Up Green: Exploring the Life Cycles of Plants and Animals

In this exciting outdoor environmental education program, kindergarteners compare and contrast the life cycles of four plants and animals through hands-on investigation. Activities include using dip nets and buckets in the Arboretum’s wetland to see what frogs look like at each stage of the life cycle, searching for caterpillars and eggs in the butterfly garden, and exploring the Arboretum’s woodlands in a tree life cycle scavenger hunt. The program is aligned with MSDE standards LS4a–d, LS6a–b, and EN15a–b.

Organization(s): Adkins Arboretum
Location: 12610 Eveland Road Ridgely, MD 21660 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters
Level(s): Early Learning
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: food web, habitat and niche, wildlife
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Day Trips to Fairview

Programs focus on animal studies, astronomy, campfire, canoeing, challenge course, fishing, geology, hiking, orienteering, weather study, stream study and adventure activities.

Organization(s): Fairview Outdoor Education Center Facilities
Location: 12808 Draper Road Clear Spring, MD 21722 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters, Pollution and Pressures, Land Use and Agriculture
Level(s): Early Learning, High School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: water cycle and movement, wetland, habitat and niche, orienteering, predator prey relationships, stream study, water testing, wildlife
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School Year Programs at Clearwater

Located within Cosca Regional Park, Clearwater Nature Center offers a variety of interpretive programs hosted by park naturalists. Environmental education is strongly supported at this facility through interesting exhibits, displays, programs, special events, clubs, trips, and volunteer opportunities. The nature center features a small indoor pond, live animal exhibits, a lapidary laboratory, and seasonal herb and butterfly gardens.

Organization(s): Clearwater Nature Center
Location: 11000 Thrift Road Clinton, MD 20736 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters
Level(s): Early Learning, High School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: ecosystem and biomes, habitat and niche, wildlife
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Ecology Cruise

In this ecology-based program, students learn about the diverse animals, plants, and environment of the Chesapeake through hands-on activities onboard the Mister Jim, our replica buy boat. Students explore the Bay watershed from large to small, starting with maps of the Chesapeake’s waterways and populations, moving to water quality testing, dredging for oysters, and finishing by examining the animals and organisms that call an oyster reef home.

Organization(s): Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum
Location: 213 N. Talbot Street St. Michaels, MD 21663 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters, History and Culture, Pollution and Pressures
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: oyster, blue crab, culture and watermen, habitat and niche, wildlife, fish
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Stanley Norman Skipjack Program in St. Michaels

The Stanley Norman, one of the last of the Chesapeake's famous fleet of skipjacks, provides an authentic setting to study the Bay's resources. Originally built in 1902, the Stanley Norman is an unforgettable venue for participants to dredge for oysters, test water quality, and imagine what it was like to work on a 65 wooden sailing vessel. CBF instructors utilize activities to deepen participants’ understanding of local ecosystems and give relevance and depth to the classroom curriculum. Our goal is to actively engage students and promote higher order thinking skills by learning through active experience.

Organization(s): Chesapeake Bay Foundation
Location: 213 North Talbot St. St. Michaels, MD 21663 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters, History and Culture, Pollution and Pressures, Land Use and Agriculture
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: boats, canoes and kayaks, pollution, land use, oyster, blue crab, culture and watermen, habitat and niche, water quality, water testing
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Rotten Log Scavenger Hunt

Discover the importance of invertebrates in our pine forest ecosystem by participating in a scavenger hunt. Students will observe the role played by invertebrates in breaking down rotten logs and returning nutrients to the soil.

Organization(s): Chesapeake Bay Environmental Center
Location: 600 Discovery Lane Grasonville, MD 21638 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters
Level(s): Early Learning, Elementary School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: habitat and niche, wildlife
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Catch a Bay Critter

After hiking down a scenic nature trail, participants will use seining and dip nets, while wading in the bay and tidal pools (depending on tide, students may be walking through water up to their knees). They will catch and identify many different species of animal life to determine the health of the Chesapeake Bay and learn the importance of this spectacular estuary and the surrounding wetland ecosystem!

Organization(s): Chesapeake Bay Environmental Center
Location: 600 Discovery Lane Grasonville, MD 21638 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: habitat and niche, wildlife
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Birds of Prey Program

During this program, participants will meet several different species of raptors, and discover the special adaptations of these birds of prey. Through up-close observations and discussions, the participants will learn about the unique visual and auditory adaptations, as well as other features that put these hunters at the pinnacle of the food chain. Special attention will be given to the importance of raptors to an ecosystem, especially the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. Finally, participants will conduct a pellet dissection and use identification materials to determine the diet of an owl.

Organization(s): Chesapeake Bay Environmental Center
Location: 600 Discovery Lane Grasonville, MD 21638 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters
Level(s): Early Learning, Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: adaptation, habitat and niche, predator prey relationships, wildlife
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The Remarkable Oyster Program

Discover the amazing filtering ability of this important mollusk and its effects on Chesapeake Bay water quality. Participants will learn about the life cycle of an oyster and the process of restoring the oyster population that many restoration organizations are currently engaged in. Participants will also explore the importance of oyster reefs so vital to the Bay’s biodiversity by learning different reef structures and configurations and the success of these artificial habitats.

Organization(s): Chesapeake Bay Environmental Center
Location: 600 Discovery Lane Grasonville, MD 21638 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters, Restoration
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: oyster, biodiversity, ecosystem and biomes, habitat and niche, restoration
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Hashawha Environmental Center Education Program

Carroll County Outdoor School provides sixth grade students with a unique opportunity for intensive study in a "living laboratory." Each sixth grader has the opportunity to attend a week-long residential environmental education program at the Hashawha Environmental Center. Instruction and supervision are provided by the Outdoor School team, high school student counselors, and visiting classroom teachers.

Organization(s): Carroll County Outdoor School
Location: 300 John Owings Road Westminster, MD 21158 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters, Pollution and Pressures, Land Use and Agriculture
Level(s): Middle School
Program Length(s): Day Trips Multi-Day Trips
Keywords: pollution, land use, watershed, habitat and niche, water quality, wildlife
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Marsh Walk & Otter Habitat

This program is recommended March through October. Explore the relationship between marsh creatures both above and below the water. This outdoor exhibit is a living study of the plant and animal communities that inhabit saltwater, freshwater, and upland marshes. Includes a visit to our otter habitat where students interact with these most social of animals. Students learn the critical role the marsh plays in protecting the environment and investigate the clues animals leave behind to identify inhabitants in the marsh. Our Maritime Exhibit explores over 400 years of life on the Patuxent River, touching on Native Americans, colonists, boat builders, watermen, military training, recreation and research. We offer three different field trips in this area.

Organization(s): Calvert Marine Museum
Location: 14200 Solomons Island Rd Solomons, MD 20688 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: wetland, ecosystem and biomes, habitat and niche, Native American, wildlife, fish
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Distance Learning Programs

If you can't come to the museum, we can come to you through our Distance Learning Programs. We are very excited to offer these programs to people in our region, across the country and around the globe.

Organization(s): Calvert Marine Museum
Location: 14200 Solomons Island Rd Solomons, MD 20688 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters, History and Culture, Pollution and Pressures, Land Use and Agriculture
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: pollution, wetland, land use, watershed, culture and watermen, ecosystem and biomes, erosion, forest, habitat and niche, John Smith and colonial times, Native American, sediment, soil and rocks, wildlife, fish, economics
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Visit Blackwater National Wildlife Refugee

The Refuge includes over 25,000 acres, composed mainly of rich tidal marsh. At the Refuge, visitors will find a beautiful Visitor Center, a Wildlife Drive, four hiking trails, three paddling trails, miles of cycling roads, hunting/fishing/crabbing opportunities, and adventures in environmental education.

Organization(s): Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge
Location: 2145 Key Wallace Drive Cambridge, MD 21613 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: boats, canoes and kayaks, invasive species, wetland, ecosystem and biomes, habitat and niche, wildlife
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Explore the Education Center

Blackbird State Forest is a free site for outdoor recreation - open all year long with trails. The Education Center, features interactive displays and outdoor trails on Delaware's forests.

Organization(s): Blackbird State Forest Education Center
Location: 502 Blackbird Forest Road Smyrna, DE 19977 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters, Pollution and Pressures, Land Use and Agriculture
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: forest, habitat and niche, wildlife
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Naturalist Guided Hike

Explore the outdoors with a park naturalist and learn interesting facts about local plants and animals. Hike the grounds around the nature facility, or meet the naturalist in a park or outdoor area near you. This program is appropriate for all ages and is popular with scout and afterschool groups.

Organization(s): Black Hill Nature Center
Location: 8787 Georgia Avenue Silver Spring, MD 20910 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters
Level(s): Early Learning, Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: habitat and niche
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How about Habitat

Experience and compare firsthand the variety of habitats Maryland has to offer. Explore stream, lake, wetland, meadow, and forest habitats and examine their inhabitants, structure, and ecological role in the greater environment. Available throughout the year. Offered as a single lesson or a series of lessons. We can also come to your school to do a pre-lesson to better prepare students for their field experience. Age range is Kindergarten to 5th grade. Location is Black Hill Visitor Center or can be flexible. Curriculum support for: skills and processes, earth/space, life, and environmental.

Organization(s): Black Hill Nature Center
Location: 8787 Georgia Avenue Silver Spring, MD 20910 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters
Level(s): Elementary School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: wetland, forest, habitat and niche
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Insightful Insects

Discover the fascinating life cycle of insects from beetles to dragonflies. Investigate a native plant garden and meadow habitat to see how they helps butterflies and other pollinators. Activities include catch and release, explorations, and data analysis. Available all year depending on the species of interest. Offered as a single lesson or a series of lessons. We can also come to your school to do a pre-lesson to better prepare students for their field experience or to assist a schoolyard butterfly habitat. Age range is Elementary to Middle School. Location is flexible. Curriculum support for: skills and processes, earth/space, life, physics, environmental.

Organization(s): Black Hill Nature Center
Location: 8787 Georgia Avenue Silver Spring, MD 20910 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: habitat and niche, schoolyard habitat, wildlife
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Story time on the Lake

All aboard! Take a pontoon boat ride around Little Seneca Lake and hear a story on a variety of topics such as dragonflies, beavers, bats, autumn leaves, or eagles! A craft activity is also included. Available mid-April thru September. Can be offered as a single lesson or as a series. Age range is Pre-K to 5th grade. Curriculum support for: Reading ( informational, literary, and listening), earth/space, life, and environmental.

Organization(s): Black Hill Nature Center
Location: 8787 Georgia Avenue Silver Spring, MD 20910 (Map It)
Theme(s): History and Culture
Level(s): Early Learning, Elementary School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: beaver, habitat and niche, wildlife
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Survival Skills 101

Ever wondered how humans survived before the days of smartphones, microwaves, and television? Gain firsthand knowledge and experience in securing shelter, water, and food. Learn historic techniques for making containers, tools, and fire. An excellent tie-in to any geography or early civilization lesson block. Available in all seasons. Can be offered as a single lesson or as a series. We can also come to your school to do a pre-lesson to better prepare students for their field experience. Age range middle to high school. Curriculum support for: earth/space, environmental, social studies, skills and processes for geography.

Organization(s): Black Hill Nature Center
Location: 8787 Georgia Avenue Silver Spring, MD 20910 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters, Pollution and Pressures, Land Use and Agriculture
Level(s): Middle School, High School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: habitat and niche, John Smith and colonial times, Native American
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Lake/ Stream Ecology:

Learn how water, living creatures, and natural processes are all connected. Explore lake or stream habitats to see what lives there and why. Collect and analyze data on water quality and living indicators such as macro-invertebrates. Available mid-April thru September. Available in the winter as a winter birding program that utilizes the Black Hill Visitor Center and lake shore viewing areas. Can be offered as a single lesson or as a series. We can also come to your school to do a pre-lesson to better prepare students for their field experience. Age range is 5th grade to high school. Location is flexible. Curriculum support for: skills and processes, earth/space, life, chemistry, and environmental.

Organization(s): Black Hill Nature Center
Location: 8787 Georgia Avenue Silver Spring, MD 20910 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters, Pollution and Pressures
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: food web, habitat and niche, water quality, water testing, wildlife
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MD-DC-VA Audubon School Programs

At the Audubon Naturalist Society we offer a wide variety of educational programs that foster an appreciation, understanding and stewardship of the natural environment. Our programs are open to public schools, private schools, homeschool groups, and scouts in preschool through Grade 5. For programs with middle and high school students, please contact us to learn how we can tailor a program for your students. We can accommodate children with varied needs and are happy to work with teachers to meet their academic goals. We give teachers the convenient choice of taking a field trip to one of our beautiful nature sanctuaries in Chevy Chase, Maryland or Leesburg, Virginia OR having a naturalist come to your school with our Naturalist in Your Classroom program. We provide multilevel programs that meet state standards as well as developmental milestones in Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia.

Organization(s): Audubon Naturalist Society
Location: 802 Children's Center Road Leesburg, VA 20175 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters, Pollution and Pressures, Restoration, Land Use and Agriculture
Level(s): Early Learning, Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: food web, forest, habitat and niche, schoolyard habitat, wildlife
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MD-DC-VA Audubon School Programs

At the Audubon Naturalist Society we offer a wide variety of educational programs that foster an appreciation, understanding and stewardship of the natural environment. Our programs are open to public schools, private schools, homeschool groups, and scouts in preschool through Grade 5. For programs with middle and high school students, please contact us to learn how we can tailor a program for your students. We can accommodate children with varied needs and are happy to work with teachers to meet their academic goals. We give teachers the convenient choice of taking a field trip to one of our beautiful nature sanctuaries in Chevy Chase, Maryland or Leesburg, Virginia OR having a naturalist come to your school with our Naturalist in Your Classroom program. We provide multilevel programs that meet state standards as well as developmental milestones in Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia.

Organization(s): Audubon Naturalist Society
Location: 8940 Jones Mill Road Chevy Chase, MD 20815 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters, Pollution and Pressures, Land Use and Agriculture
Level(s): Early Learning, Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: food web, forest, habitat and niche, schoolyard habitat, wildlife
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Fish and Aquatic Resources Education Lessons

Students discover interesting facts about a variety of local fish and aquatic species and communities. The Aquatic Resources Education Center (AREC) houses a living collection of local fish species and other aquatic wildlife in 20-1,500 gallon display tanks. Scheduled programs include hands-on demonstrations and activities on the following topics: Fish Biology – learn basic fish anatomy and identification of local species Chesapeake Bay watershed – discover how individual actions impact our local habitats and wildlife Water as a Resource - investigate the importance of water for humans and animals Wetlands – explore local wetland habitats and how they function Teachers acquire additional activities to use with their students after a visit to the AREC. Teachers will be given support and assistance to answer any scientific questions relevant to our local urban fish and aquatic species.

Organization(s): Aquatic Resources Education Center
Location: Anacostia Park Washington, DC 20020 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters, Pollution and Pressures
Level(s): Early Learning, Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: water cycle and movement, wetland, watershed, ecosystem and biomes, habitat and niche, wildlife, fish
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Educational Tool Boxes

Students learn about aquatic ecology, frogs and water properties with hands-on activities that incorporate the FOSS Water Kit, microscopes, and more. Teachers complete a pre- requisite training in the use of the educational tool boxes from staff at our Aquatic Education Center. Teachers are then permitted to check out the tool boxes for use in their classroom or at our Center.

Organization(s): Aquatic Resources Education Center
Location: Anacostia Park Washington, DC 20020 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters
Level(s): Early Learning, Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: water cycle and movement, ecosystem and biomes, habitat and niche, water testing, wildlife
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Audacious Adaptations Program

An in-depth exploration of the behavioral and physical adaptations of plants and animals in both the woods and the water.

Organization(s): Apple Ridge Farm
Location: 541 Luck Avenue Roanoke, VA 24016 (Map It)
Theme(s): Habitats and Critters
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Program Length(s): Day Trips
Keywords: adaptation, habitat and niche, wildlife
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