top of page



Amazing Animals

Discover the similarities and differences between amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals as we look at  (and possibly touch) some of the amazing animals with which we share our planet.  What do they need to survive?  Which ones live in North Carolina and how can we protect them?

1.L.1.1, 1.L.1.2, 1.L.1.3, 1.L.2.1, EX 1.L.1

Animal Tracks

Become a field biologist and learn how to look for the clues that animals leave behind. We will discover what creatures live here at Chestnut Ridge by identifying animal tracks left in the track traps located throughout the forest. Then we will make track casts that the students will be able to take home with them. 

1.L.1.1, 1.L.1.2, 1.L.1.3, 1.L.2.1, EX 1.L.1

Aquatic Plants and Animals

This is our most popular program. We will use nets and buckets to collect, and charts to identify, the various insects, crustaceans and other small creatures that inhabit our lake.  1st graders will learn all about the animals that live in a North Carolina pond ecosystem, what they need to survive and what we can do to keep the pond water clean.  2nd graders will focus on the various life cycles of the pond creatures as they catch tadpoles, frogs, insect larvae (and adults) and an assortment of other pond animals.

1.L.1.1, 1.L.1.2, 1.L.1.3, 1.L.2.2, EX 1.L.1

2.L.1.1, 2.L.1.2, 2.L.2.1, 2.L.2.2, EX 2.L.1, EX 2.L.1.1, EX 2.L.1.2

Changes in Properties

What is matter? How can it change? These questions & more will be answered as we investigate the properties of solids, liquids, and gases. We’ll figure out what Gak really is and experience liquids turning into solids by either making candles or making (and eating) ice cream.  Some changes are oh, so sweet!


2.P.2.1, 2.P.2.2, 2.P.2.3, EX. 2.P.2

Compost Crazy

At Chestnut Ridge we try to reduce, reuse, and recycle, and one way we do this is by composting our food waste. Students will visit our compost bins, get an up-close look at who’s at work in there, and build their own compost pile. They’ll learn what goes in a compost bin (and what doesn’t), the role of temperature in composting, and how compost helps gardens, plants, and the planet. Take home instructions for how to start your own compost at home or school

1.L.1.1, 1.L.1.2, 1.L.1.3, 1.L.2.2, EX 1.L.1

2.L.1.1, 2.L.1.2, 2.L.2.1, 2.L.2.2, EX 2.L.1, EX 2.L.1.1, EX 2.L.1.2

Force and Motion

We’ll push, We’ll pull We’ll use the forces of magnetism and gravity to make things move without even touching them. We’ll make a catapult (to take home) and see how the energy in a rubber band can make marshmallows move. Then we’ll head to the lake to watch how gravity can make rocks “fly”

1.P.1.1, 1.P.1.2, 1.P.1.3, EX 1.P.1

Herp Encounters

Did you know that North Carolina has more species of salamanders then anywhere else in the United States? In this program we focus on reptiles and amphibians. Students will meet (and possibly touch) different species of reptiles and amphibians most of which can be found right here in North Carolina!  Students will discover how these creatures are alike and different, what they need to survive and ways in which we can protect them. 2nd graders will also compare their life cycles.

1.L.1.1, 1.L.1.2, 1.L.1.3, 1.L.2.2, EX 1.L.1

2.L.1.1, 2.L.1.2, 2.L.2.1, 2.L.2.2, EX 2.L.1, EX 2.L.1.1, EX 2.L.1.2

The Hive and the Honeybee

Chestnut Ridge is home to several colonies of honeybees, one of which lives in an observation hive (late April-early October). Come out to see the bees at their work. Can you find the queen bee? Learn about the different types of honeybees, the symbiotic relationship between bees and fruit-producing plants, and how humans need honeybees and the life cycle of the bee. Taste some honey and make a beeswax candle to take home!

1.L.1.1, 1.L.1.2, 1.L.1.3, 1.L.2.2, Ex 1.L.1

2.L.1.1, 2.L.1.2, 2.L.2.1, 2.L.2.2, EX 2.L.1, EX 2.L.1.1, EX 2.L.1.2

Chestnut Ridge is home to chickens, goats, cows, pigs, and horses! It’s the perfect place to learn about animal life cycles. Students will get hands-on experience with our farm animals and play games to learn about how animals grow and change.

2.L.1.1, 2.L.1.2, 2.L.2.1, 2.L.2.2, EX 2.L.1, EX 2.L.1.1, EX 2.L.1.2

Rock On

We will become geologists and investigate, identify, and classify several different types of rocks and soils including some found in North Carolina. Each student will begin their own rock collection and take home a sample of four different kinds of rocks.

1.E.2 1, 1.E.2.2, EX 1.E.2

The Wonder of Worms

Yes, they are wiggly and squirmy, but do you know how important worms are? Learn about worm anatomy, life cycle, and just what makes worms so wonderful. Expect to examine (and touch) worms and determine if they prefer dry or wet environments, light or dark and rough or smooth surfaces.

1.L.1.1, 1.L.1.2, 1.L.1.3, 1.L.2.2, EX 1.L.1

2.L.1.1, 2.L.1.2, 2.L.2.1, 2.L.2.2, EX 2.L.1, EX 2.L.1.1, EX 2.L.1.2

Whatever the Weather

At Chestnut Ridge we are open all four seasons and experience a variety of weather phenomena. Come visit us in any season and become Jr. Meteorologists as we investigate the components of weather, discover the importance of the water cycle, and learn about the tools used to measure the weather

2.E.1.1, 2.E.1.2, 2.E.1.3, 2.E.1.4, EX 2.E.1, EX 2.E.1.2

bottom of page