Onsite School Programs: Registration

Garden Explorers

Grades: Pre-K, K

During this 1½-hour lesson, students will use all five senses to explore Shangri La Gardens. Students will plant a seed to take home, experience a veggie tasting, enjoy story time, identify animal sounds, and play a game! This program DOES NOT include a boat tour.

Tiny Treasures

Grade Levels: K,1,2

During this 2-hour lesson, students will discover several of the tiny treasures that Shangri La Gardens holds. Students will go on a nature exploration hike to investigate and collect treasures for their own ‘nature bank’. Wildlife Curator, Robert Morgan, will showcase several of Shangri La Gardens’ tiny inhabitants such as rollie pollies, snails, worms, and caterpillars. We will create mini habitats, or ‘fairy homes’, and end our day with a game. Join us to discover all of Shangri La Gardens’ tiny treasures! This lesson DOES include a boat tour.

Creature Coverings

Grade Levels: 3,4,5

During this 2-hour hands on lesson, we will explore how animal body coverings help them to survive in unique environments. We will investigate a variety of animal adaptations and meet a few live animals. Students will use what they learn to complete a STEM challenge in which they will design, build, and test their very own armored creations. This lesson DOES NOT include a boat tour.

Art for Conservation

Grade Levels: 5,6,7,8

Discover what you can do to be an environmental conservationist during this 4 1/2 hour program!  At Shangri La Gardens, students will explore the swamp, forests, and wetland habitats that birds and other critters call home. We will discuss migration and the importance of habitat conservation. At the Stark Museum of Art, students will go on a western expedition and learn how artists and explorers have helped protect animals, land, and water. After visiting the galleries, students will visit the studio to create their own conservation collage. Students will spend approximately 2 hours at Shangri La Gardens and 2 hours at the Stark Museum Art. Students should bring a sack lunch; there will be a 1/2 hour lunch break at Shangri La Gardens. The bus driver should be prepared to shuttle students between Shangri La Gardens and the Stark Museum of Art during this lesson. This lesson DOES include a boat tour.

The Scoop on Soil

Grade Levels: All Special Education Grades

During this 1-hour lesson, students will learn what plants need to grow and about what is happening in the soil beneath! Through hands-on exploration, we will delve into the dynamics of soil and develop an understanding of the valuable contributions made by decomposers such as earthworms and pill bugs (rollie pollies). Each student will make a special terrarium garden to take home.

*Teachers, this lesson can be facilitated onsite at Shangri La Gardens, or in your classroom as an outreach program. Whatever is easiest for you and your students!*

Please contact Wendy Elliott at (409) 670-9113 or welliott@shangrilagardens.org to schedule this class.

Garden Explorers

Grades: Pre-K, K

During this 1½-hour lesson, students will use all five senses to explore Shangri La Gardens. Students will plant a seed to take home, experience a veggie tasting, enjoy story time, identify animal sounds, and play a game! This program DOES NOT include a boat tour.

Squid Dissection

Grade Levels: 4,5,6,7,8

In this 2-hour lesson, students will practice safe lab procedures as we introduce them to the wonders of dissection. Students will learn external and internal anatomy, focusing on what makes squid unique. Students will extract the beak, the “pen,” and lenses from the eyes. They will use the ink in the ink sac to write their name on a card that they get to keep! This is an indoor lesson and DOES NOT include a boat tour.

Beneficial Bugs

Grade Levels: K,1,2

During this 2-hour lesson, students will discover that humans cannot live without bugs! Students will discover the relationship between plants and pollinators as they collect insects, sample different types of honey, release beneficial insects into our Children’s Garden, and more! This lesson DOES NOT include a boat tour.

Habitats Unfolded

Grade Levels: 1,2,3,4

Experience the best of the Stark Museum of Art and Shangri La Gardens! At Shangri La Botanical Gardens, students will embark on an adventure to investigate the natural habitats that Southeast Texans call home. We will venture onto the forest trails, traverse the swampy terrain, drift along the bayou, and completely engage with the habitats that make Southeast Texas unique. We will end our journey with a hands-on activity that will help us describe, and document our homes.  At the Stark Museum of Art, students will explore how artists depict the habitats of animals and people, as well as how they use materials from their natural habitat to create unique works of art. This program includes a visit to the special exhibition Black Pioneers: Legacy in the American West. During the studio art program, students will create a work of art inspired by their own habitat. Students will spend approximately 2 hours at Shangri La Gardens and 2 hours at the Stark Museum Art. Students should bring a sack lunch; there will be a 1/2 hour lunch break at Shangri La Gardens. The bus driver should be prepared to shuttle students between Shangri La Gardens and the Stark Museum of Art during this lesson. This lesson DOES include a boat tour.

ROCK-star Science

Grade Levels: 3,4

During this 2-hour lesson, students will become ROCK-star Scientists as we explore what happens underneath the Earth’s crust. We will take an adventure through the layers of the Earth, explore the rock cycle, and practice simple lab procedures to investigate the properties of rocks. We will get into the nitty gritty of geology so students can discover different rock characteristics and experience the journey rocks take during formation. This lesson DOES NOT include a boat tour.

Mind, Body, and Soil

Grade Levels: 3,4,5,6,7,8

Studies show that experiences in the natural world reduce stress and anxiety while boosting emotional wellness, productivity and creativity. During this 2-hour lesson, join us as we seek to promote Mental Health Awareness Month through a variety of activities that offer students the opportunity to unwind and recharge in nature. Students will explore the gardens, forest, swamp, and bayou while practicing healthy habits to unwind with Mother Nature. This lesson DOES include a boat tour.

Mighty, Mighty Nature

Grade Levels: 5,6,7,8

In this 3-hour lesson, we’ll travel along Adams Bayou where the Survivor tree stands tall. The Survivor tree has been casting its shadow across the water for generations. It could tell many stories of the oldest predators – like of alligators and gar fish lurking around the swamp. On this excursion, we’ll discover the history and strength of this old friend and get a chance to count the age of another tree. Then, we’ll dig deeper into the surrounding ecosystem by dissecting powerful invasive plant species, and conducting an experiment to check the strength of a very mighty insect. We’ll study the Alligator mississipiensis to reveal its power and finesse, and hike along Ruby Lake to explore the plants and animals who live there. This lesson DOES include a boat tour.

The Scoop on Soil

Grade Levels: All Special Education Grades

During this 1-hour lesson, students will learn what plants need to grow and about what is happening in the soil beneath! Through hands-on exploration, we will delve into the dynamics of soil and develop an understanding of the valuable contributions made by decomposers such as earthworms and pill bugs (rollie pollies). Each student will make a special terrarium garden to take home.

*Teachers, this lesson can be facilitated onsite at Shangri La Gardens, or in your classroom as an outreach program. Whatever is easiest for you and your students!*

Please contact Wendy Elliott at (409) 670-9113 or welliott@shangrilagardens.org to schedule this class.

Onsite School Program Registration 23-24

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  • For safety reasons, Shangri La Gardens requires 1 adult for every 10 students, plus one extra. For example, if you have 20 students in your class, you should bring 3 adults, including teachers and parents. Exception: one-on-one aides.
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  • BY RESERVING ANY SHANGRI LA BOTANICAL GARDENS AND NATURE CENTER SCHOOL PROGRAM, INCLUDING ONSITE FIELD TRIP, VIRTUAL FIELD TRIP, OR OUTREACH PROGRAM (COLLECTIVELY “SCHOOL PROGRAM”), THE SCHOOL AND/OR HOMESCHOOL PARENT ASSUMES ALL RISK INCIDENT TO THE SCHOOL PROGRAM INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO PROPERTY DAMAGE AND PERSONAL INJURY OR ILLNESS, AND BY RESERVING THIS SCHOOL PROGRAM NOW AGREES TO RELEASE SHANGRI LA BOTANICAL GARDENS AND NATURE CENTER AND THE NELDA C. AND H. J. LUTCHER STARK FOUNDATION, OUR AGENTS, AND RELATED ENTITIES FROM ALL LIABILITY FOR ANY LOSS, INJURY, ILLNESS, OR DAMAGE THAT YOU MAY SUSTAIN, EVEN IF THE LOSS, INJURY, ILLNESS, OR DAMAGE IS CAUSED BY OUR SOLE NEGLIGENCE OR FAULT.
  • Shangri La Garden’s Field Trip programs are reserved on a first-come-first-served basis. Reservations are not complete until it is confirmed by a Shangri La Gardens Education Staff Member.
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