Over the past few years, we have developed a wide range of programming for homeschool students. These programs are taught by our naturalists and are held once a month throughout the school year. Every month brings new and interesting subjects inspired by the season and the land at Schlitz Audubon. Our homeschool program has fostered a sense of community between the families who participate, and our Center. We are happy to see them return outside of scheduled programming to hike and engage in other Center activities.
Lessons Influenced by the Season
In October, our homeschool students were able to take full advantage of the beautiful fall weather, calm water, and sunny skies. The lessons focused on water and were geared toward each age group.
The junior elementary students learned about how the water on our planet runs through a never-ending cycle. We climbed to the top of the tower and took in the view of the changing leaves and then visited the most valuable water source that we have–Lake Michigan!
Our senior elementary students learned about all the different processes that go into shaping the land as we know it. We learned about the glaciers receding and leaving behind moraines, hills, lakes, and kettles. We also studied the ravines leading down to Lake Michigan, created our own land forms in the sand, and replicated erosion with buckets of Lake Michigan’s water.
There is myriad of life that can be found in our ponds. Our secondary homeschool students explored Mystery Lake in October. They used scoop nets to carefully extract and identify Dragonfly and Damselfly Nymphs, Pouch Snails, Leeches, Backswimmers, and other macroinvertebrates. By recording the creatures they discovered, the students participated in a partial Citizen Science survey, monitoring wetlands.
A Year of Nature to Discover
As the year progresses and the seasons change, our homeschool students have so much to discover on our land. We’re proud of this program and the connections that each student makes with their peers and the naturalists. It’s our hope that through these monthly programs, a bond with nature forms, one that will last well into the future.