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School Field Trips

The Nature Discovery Center offers school-year “Nature at Your Doorstep” Field Trips and Summer Field Trips. This page details our school-year field trip program. Field Trips to the Nature Discovery Center are based on a curriculum of real world investigations that nurture the young scientist in every student! Download or print our School Programs flyer (PDF)

Field Trip Inquiry Form

More information

The Center is proud to partner with other area organizations as part of the Every Kid in a Park Initiative. 4th grade teachers from Title I schools are invited to apply for bus funding for environmental education based field trips. Apply here to have bus costs covered for your trip to the Center.

 

“Nature at Your Doorstep” Field Trip Program Overview

Who: Elementary and preschool groups. Some programs are appropriate for middle school groups. Call for details.
What: Nature At Your Doorstep is an interdisciplinary field study program for elementary and preschool aged students based on a curriculum guide developed by Center staff. Classes investigate nature outdoors using scientific methodology and explore the Discovery Rooms. The topics outlined below are available for nature investigation (click here for TEKS Correlates for each of our Field Trip Programs).
Where: Nature Discovery Center (7112 Newcastle, Bellaire, TX 77401) in Russ Pitman Park.
When: The program runs from 9:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. (programs with an * are two hours, Tuesday through Friday)
Cost: $7 per student. Title 1 Schools $5 per student.
Because field trip costs are based on the exact number of students participating, the NDC now invoices schools and organizations after an accurate headcount is submitted on the day of the trip. Invoices may be paid the day of the field trip by credit card, check, or with cash. Invoices may also be paid over the phone with a credit card or with a check submitted within 30 days of the field trip date (also the invoice date). Late payments will be assessed a 10% late fee over the total amount of the invoice.  Please be sure to include your Invoice # with your payment.
Size: Maximum 40 pre-K students or two K-6th grade classes. One adult chaperone is required per every 5 pre-K – K students and one adult chaperone per every 10 students 1st grade and up.

 

 

Program Topics by Grade Levels

4 years – 1st Grade
•  Awakening Senses – making discoveries with each of our senses.

1st Grade – 5th Grade
•  Animal Count – counting animals and sorting by class (mammal, bird, fish, etc.)
•  Trekking Around Trees – investigating tree characteristics.
•  Beginning Birdwatching – surveying bird locations or behaviors.
•  Seeking Out Squirrels – observing squirrel behavior and location.

2nd Grade – 5th Grade
•  Investigating Insects – distinguishing insects from non-insects (two hour program).
•  Homing In On Habitats – determining which animals can find a complete habitat in
Russ Pitman Park.

3rd Grade – 5th Grade
•  Delving Into Biodiversity – investigating biodiversity in several small sections of the
park (two hour program).

4th and 5th Grade
•  Finding Food Webs – discovering who eats what.
•  Connecting Communities – studying plant and animal interactions.

Inquiries, Scheduling, Confirmation, and Payment

**NEW**  Submit a School Field Trip Inquiry Form to let us know the program(s) you are interested in and your preferred dates. It also alerts our staff to any special needs your group may have or to questions you may have about our program. Our Program Coordinator will contact you about your inquiry as soon as possible.

  • Scheduling is on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • Reservations may be made by calling the Center at 713.667.6550.
  • Your organization will receive an invoice for your visit based on the number of students who participate.
  • If you must cancel or reschedule, notify the Center as early as possible so the date may be made available to another group.

Clothing, Conduct, and Chaperones

• Comfortable, weather appropriate clothing, including closed toe shoes, is recommended.
• Teachers and chaperones are responsible for the behavior and discipline of their group.
• Communicate to your chaperones that they can be most helpful by guiding students through activities in the Discovery Rooms and by modeling appropriate behavior throughout the visit.

Lunch Facilities

Covered picnic tables in the pavilion behind the Center can accommodate all students, teachers, and chaperones and are reserved for your group. In addition, there are a few picnic tables near the playground at the south end of the park available on a first-come, first-served basis.
Field Trip Inquiry Form

FAQs

  • Where should we park our buses? School buses may unload in the North lot but should park in the Evergreen pool parking lot at 4500 Evergreen Street. Be aware that long or full size buses will need to back out of the North parking lot after unloading as there is not enough space to turn around. In addition, large buses may find it difficult to make the tight turns into and out of the South parking lot. Parallel parking on Evergreen Street adjacent to the parking lot entrance is permitted.
  • Our organization has a big group. How many can you accommodate? Large groups will need to be split into smaller groups or across multiple days. We can accommodate up to 50 students in one session or 100 students in two sessions. Group size limits are necessary to match the space limitations of our facilities and also benefit the quality of the field trip experience for the kids.
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