Student Groups & Teachers
“Everyone was very welcoming. The grounds are so well marked, we could figure things out easily. It is a very special place.”
-Portland Arts and Technology High School
Cultivating Curiosity–a field trip program at Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens–offers school groups three types of experiences. Choose the option that best suits your group:
Formal Guided Tours are designed for teachers who want to make their visit part of an overall curricular unit. Free downloadable pre- and post-visit activities help to prepare for the visit and reinforce concepts back in the classroom. Options currently include Timber Cruisers for 6th-8th grades, Pollinators for 3rd-5th grades, and Birds at the Gardens for k-2nd grades. Price: $50 per class (not to exceed 25 students per class; does not include Gardens admission).
Informal Guided Tours are 60-90 minute walks led by Gardens Guides that explore different ares of our Gardens. 2013 offerings include a Timber Trail Walk to celebrate our Timbers, Trees, and Traditions theme; Sense of Wonder Trail Walk in the spirit of Rachel Carson; and a Central Gardens Walk that introduces our Garden of the Five Senses and Children’s Garden (ideal for younger students). Price: $25 per class (not to exceed 25 students per class; does not include Gardens admission).
Self-Guided Tours begin with a warm welcome upon arrival and offer a home base for visitor orientation and lunch. Children explore the gardens under the supervision of their own teachers and chaperones. Price: Free with Gardens admission.
New for 2014! Check out a Discovery Backpack for your students during your field trip visit! Our Discovery Backpacks add more structure to your visit while giving your students the opportunity to use the Gardens as a place for investigation and discovery. Choose from our themed backpacks, including Birds at the Gardens, Flowers and Pollinators, and Trees of the Maine Woods. Each backpack, which is ideal for two students to share, contains field guides, scavenger hunts, games, binoculars, a field journal, and materials to perform more in-depth studies. Ten backpacks may be checked out at any given time for a fee of $2/backpack. Please contact Erika Huber at 633-4333, ext. 151 to reserve our Discovery Backpacks for your field trip visit. More details to come!
The season for field trips is April 15 to October 31. School groups receive a special admission rate, and visits must be booked in advance through the Education Department. To ensure a quality experience for all guests, there is a limit of one school group per day; therefore, please make your reservations early. Call Erika Huber, Youth and Family Program Coordinator at (207) 633-4333 ext. 151.
We also offer a fun Gardens photo scavenger hunt that encourages creative interpretation and discovery.
We are always looking for ways to integrate the Gardens into Maine curriculum. Please contact our Education Department if you have additional suggestions, comments, or ideas.