Student Field Trips

Student Field Trips

Make learning fun.

Meijer Gardens believes every educational experience should be creative, age-appropriate and relevant. By focusing on main ideas and hands-on learning, our educational offerings are both informative and engaging. Four field trip options are offered (details below). When you are ready to schedule your field trip, please fill out the Field Trip Registration Request Form available HERE.

Reduced Group Admission (Self-Led Tour)

  • Explore at your own pace.

Reduced Group Admission:
$4.00 / Student

A minimum of ten students and two weeks preregistration is required. 

Various materials are available to enhance your experience - please request the materials at the time you make your reservation. Choose from the following options for self-led tours:

Why do butterflies’ wings have bright colors and intricate patterns? Use this worksheet to explore Fred & Dorothy Fichter Butterflies Are Blooming and think critically about why butterflies have unique markings.

Using this worksheet as a guide, select one species of butterfly and make your own observations. Note flight patterns, wing speed, feeding preference, puddling behavior, camouflage techniques and more. Available during Fred & Dorothy Fichter Butterflies Are Blooming.

Take a journey through the life cycle of a butterfly. Learn about the different stages of metamorphosis with this fun activity. Print, assemble and bring it along for your visit to Fred & Dorothy Fichter Butterflies Are Blooming at Meijer Gardens. Show what you’ve learned to your friends and family! Download and print the Life Cycle Wheel here.

A set of imaginative, child-friendly Activity Cards will help chaperones navigate the ten distinct areas of the Lena Meijer Children’s Gardens. Cards provide suggestions for three age/difficulty levels.

Download Activity Cards PDF

Explore the Wetlands with our Wetlands Looking Guide. From dragonflies to cattails, students learn about this fascinating habitat as they try to find all the pictured features using this guide.

Download the Wetlands Looking Guide PDF

Search for intriguing sculptures using the visitor map and worksheet. After you find them, try the accompanying activity. Have fun!

Download and print the Family Sculpture Hunt!

Hunt for weird and wild plants in our indoor conservatories – from a plant that can trap a frog to a cactus covered in ‘hair.’ As they search for plants from around the world, students answer questions that prompt them to discover more. 

Download and print the Weird and Wild Plants Around the World PDF.

Have fun exploring Michigan's Farm Garden with this activity guide and map.

Download and print the Michigan's Farm Garden Activity Guide PDF.

The 1930's come alive at our Michigan’s Farm Garden. Discover how farming used to be done by trying our Tool Matching Challenge in the barn.

All sculpture gallery exhibitions offer a Gallery Guide describing the current exhibition, and many also have Family Looking Guides to provide additional, fun activities related to the artwork.

Sketching is welcomed throughout Meijer Gardens. There are clipboards as well as portable sketching stools for your use. Please request these materials at the time you make your reservation.

Guided Tour

  • 45 to 60-minutes, curriculum-based, interactive experience

Reduced Group Admission:
$4.00 / Student, Plus Additional $1.00 / Student

A minimum of ten students and two weeks preregistration is required. 

Led by trained volunteer docents. Limited tours are offered during our annual Metro Health Christmas & Holiday Traditions (mid-November through December) exhibition, and self-led tours are available during Fred & Dorothy Fichter Butterflies Are Blooming (March through April). Otherwise, all tours are offered year-round unless otherwise noted. Choose from the following:

Description: Learn colors, sizes, shapes and number skills while exploring plants in our conservatories. Children will participate in a variety of hands-on activities.

Availability: Available in September and October only.

Program Length: 45 minutes

Reservation Requirements: Minimum of 10 students and two weeks preregistration required

Capacity: Up to 30 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $1.00 per student per session with Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: Preschool

Objectives:

  • Students will practice sorting, counting and comparing leaves of different sizes, shapes and colors.
  • Students will learn facts about tropical and deciduous tree leaves.

Curriculum Connections:

Early Learning Expectation: Reasoning-Problem Solving-Reflection. Children demonstrate a growing capacity to make meaning, using one’s habits of mind to find a solution or figure something out.

Description: Pretending they are stranded on a tropical island, students are challenged to survive. They will develop life-saving skills as they search for hidden water sources, create a shelter, find food, and signal for help. Focusing on the many unique adaptations of plants found in the tropics, they will learn about typical rainforest plants and climate conditions.

Availability: Available year-round except during Fred & Dorothy Fichter Butterflies Are Blooming (March and April) and Christmas and Holiday Traditions Around the World (end of November through first week of January).

Program Length: 45 minutes

Reservation Requirements: Minimum of 10 students and two weeks preregistration required

Capacity: Up to 30 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $1.00 per student per session after Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: 3rd – 8th Grade

Objectives:

  • Students will use problem solving and observation skills to roleplay searching for food and water, building a shelter, and signaling for help.
  • Students will learn about the uses of many tropical plants.

Curriculum Connections:

NGSS: 3-LS4-3: Biological Evolution: Unity and Diversity

Description: This 1-hour outdoor tour focuses on exploring the 8-acre Richard & Helen DeVos Japanese Garden. Students will learn about the traditional elements and structures used in a Japanese garden, and discover the thought-provoking contemporary sculptures that make our Japanese Garden so unique. Students should dress for the weather.

Availability: Available May through November.

Program Length: 60 minutes

Reservation Requirements: Minimum of 10 students and two weeks preregistration required

Capacity: Up to 30 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $1.00 per student per session with Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: 5th – 12th Grade

Objectives:

  • Students will learn about the traditional elements of a Japanese Garden, Zen-Style Garden and Bonsai Garden.
  • Students will describe and analyze contemporary sculptures.  

Curriculum Connections:

GLCE: Visual Art: Standard 3: Analyze, describe, and evaluate works of art.

Description: This tour focuses on biomes and plant adaptations. Students will compare a rainforest and a desert environment with Michigan’s own temperate deciduous forest. Students will ponder why cacti have spines and how plants in the tropics compete for sun.

Availability: Available year-round except during Fred & Dorothy Fichter Butterflies Are Blooming and Christmas and Holiday Traditions Around the World.

Program Length: 45 minutes

Reservation Requirements: Minimum of 10 students and two weeks preregistration required

Capacity: Up to 40 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $1.00 per student per session with Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: 1st – 12th Grade

Objectives:

  • Students will learn how adaptations help plants and animals to survive in different biomes.

Curriculum Connections:

NGSS: 3-LS4-3 Biological Evolution: Unity and Diversity

Description: This 1-hour outdoor tour uses the work of world-renowned sculptors to illustrate artistic concepts. Among the principles explained are scale, materials, placement, style (realistic, abstract and non-objective), surface treatment and setting. Students will appreciate what makes Meijer Gardens unique and understand why we enjoy an international reputation for our permanent sculpture collection. Students should dress for the weather.

Availability: Available May through November.

Program Length: 60 minutes

Reservation Requirements: Minimum of 10 students and two weeks preregistration required

Capacity: Up to 40 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $1.00 per student per session with Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: 1st – 12th Grade

Objectives:

  • Students will describe and analyze contemporary sculptures.  
  • Students will learn about sculpture making processes and materials.

Curriculum Connections:

GLCE: Visual Art: Standard 3: Analyze, describe, and evaluate works of art.

This overview tour focuses on the uniqueness of Meijer Gardens combining both horticultural and sculptural elements. The students will visit our indoor gardens and galleries and receive a brief introduction to each area. Highlights include grass that grows taller than a house, plants that can count and a sculpture with more than 1,500 pieces.

Description: This tour focuses on comparing nativity scenes from six countries or regions around the world.  Students will learn how each nativity is similar to the others, and yet distinct - they differ in their choice of materials and the elements of the story that they emphasize.  Each tells us something unique about the culture from which they came.

Availability: Available during our annual Metro Health Christmas & Holiday Traditions exhibition.

Program Length: 45 minutes

Reservation Requirements: Minimum of 10 students and two weeks preregistration required

Capacity: Up to 30 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $1.00 per student per session with Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: 1st – 12th Grade

Objectives:

  • Students will compare six different nativity scenes while learning about how their elements relate to their unique culture.

Curriculum Connections:

Social Studies Content Expectations: G4 Human Systems

Description: Students become globe-trotting explorers this season by investigating holiday traditions which span the globe. Students will learn how holidays vary by region and tradition as well as how many similarities the holidays share. Students use their observation skills to discover the meaning behind the displays and decorations.

Availability: Available during the Metro Health Christmas & Holiday Traditions exhibition.

Program Length: 45 minutes

Reservation Requirements: Minimum of 10 students and two weeks preregistration required

Capacity: Up to 40 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $1.00 per student per session with Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: 1st – 12th Grade

Objectives:

  • Students will learn about holiday decorations, rituals and practices from eight different countries and traditions around the world.

Curriculum Connections:

Social Studies Content Expectations: G4 Human Systems

Classroom Activity

  • 45-60 minute curriculum-based classroom activity

Reduced Group Admission:
$4.00 / Student Plus Additional $1.00 / Student

A minimum of ten students and two weeks preregistration is required. 

Classroom activities allow a teacher to reinforce concepts learned on one of our guided tours with a related classroom lesson.  Groups may also participate in classroom activities independently of a guided tour.  Cost includes room rental, materials, and instruction fees. 

Choose from the following:

Description: Let’s go out on a limb and think about plants like we never have before! In this program, students will first review the function of roots, stems, leaves, flowers and fruits through a presentation on an interactive learning display. Students then learn about the nutritional value of different plant parts that we eat and use what they have learned to create their own yummy fantasy plant.

Availability: Available days & times: Monday through Friday; times based on availability of classroom space

Program Length: 45 minutes

Reservation Requirements: Minimum of 10 students and two weeks preregistration required

Capacity: Up to 40 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $1.00 per student per session after Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: Grades K-2; materials and instructional techniques are adapted to grade level

Objectives:

  • Students will learn about plant parts and their structure and functions by connecting with analogies to everyday objects.
  • Students will use what they have learned about the nutritional value of various plant parts to design their own yummy fantasy plant.

Curriculum Connections:

  • NGSS: 1-LS1A Structure and Function

Students will discover that butterfly wings are not just beautiful—they’re critical to survival. Students will learn how butterflies fly and how their wings help to keep them safe from predators. Students will also observe pinned specimens and discover wings that are perfectly clear (providing camouflage) and wings that advertise they’re poisonous through bright colors. Those who look closely will discover what else wings can reveal—from a butterfly’s gender to its age. Participants will engage in a student-directed critical thinking activity using iPads and their observation skills to become butterfly detectives.

This program pairs well with a self-led tour during Fred & Dorothy Fichter Butterflies Are Blooming (March through April) but can be scheduled any time during the year.

Availability: Available days & times: Monday through Friday; times based on availability of classroom space

Program Length: 45 minutes

Reservation Requirements: Minimum of 10 students and two weeks preregistration required

Capacity: Up to 40 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $1.00 per student per session after Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: Grades 3-12; materials and instructional techniques are adapted to grade level

Objectives:

  • Students will learn about the structure and function of butterfly wings and how different species use their wings to survive.
  • Students will use what they have learned about butterfly wings to critically examine butterfly specimens and draw conclusions in a “butterfly detective” style activity.

Curriculum Connections:

Michigan Next Generation Science Standards:

  • 3-Ls3-1 Heredity: Inheritance and Variation of Traits
  • 3-Ls4-2 Biological Evolution: Unity and Diversity

Become an engineer, fabricator and artist while working with a team to create a sculpture using scrap metal pieces. Students will be led on a tour in the Sculpture Park to explore 3 different creative methods of sculpture (additive, subtractive, and fabrication or assemblage) and discuss what an artist needs in order to create each piece. Students are then challenged to work cooperatively in small groups to build a sculpture that creatively incorporates the design principles they’ve discussed. Students title their sculptures and display them in a mock exhibition. This program pairs well with the Sculpture Park Tour but can be scheduled independently.

Availability: Available days & times: Monday through Friday; times based on availability of classroom space

Program Length: 60 minutes

Reservation Requirements: Minimum of 10 students and two weeks preregistration required

Capacity: Up to 40 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $1.00 per student per session after Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: Grades 4-12; materials and instructional techniques are adapted to grade level

Objectives:

  • Students will explore structure and balance to cooperatively create an assemblage using the principles of additive design
  • Students will work cooperatively to problem-solve and include a kinetic component in their finished sculpture

Curriculum Connections:

Michigan Merit Curriculum: Standards for Visual Arts:

  • Standard 1: Apply skills and knowledge to perform in the arts
  • Standard 2: Apply skills and knowledge to create in the arts
  • Standard 3: Analyze, describe and evaluate works of art

Did you know that butterflies taste with their feet? How much does a monarch caterpillar grow in 2 weeks? In this program, students learn about metamorphosis while creating a multi-media diagram using pasta to portray the four stages of the butterfly life cycle. Fascinating factoids about each stage are shared. Concepts discussed include insect anatomy, camouflage and other amazing defensive and adaptation strategies. This program pairs well with a self-led tour during Fred & Dorothy Fichter Butterflies Are Blooming (March through April) but can be scheduled any time during the year.

Availability: Available days & times: Monday through Friday; times based on availability of classroom space

Program Length: 45 minutes

Reservation Requirements: Minimum of 10 students and two weeks preregistration required

Capacity: Up to 40 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $1.00 per student per session after Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: Grades K-3; materials and instructional techniques are adapted to grade level

Objectives:

  • Students will be able to define, describe and represent the four stages of butterfly metamorphosis.
  • Students will compare and contrast similarities and differences in traits among butterfly species.
  • Students will be able to provide examples of adaptations and defensive strategies used by butterflies to survive in their habitats.

Curriculum Connections:

  • NGSS: 1-LS3-1 Heredity: Inheritance and Variation of Traits
  • NGSS: 1-LS1-1 From Molecules to Organisms: Structures and Processes

Extend the learning with a special classroom activity where students will discover the fascinating history of the Polish szopka.  Dating back to medieval times, szopki are brightly-colored, gleaming architectural displays combined with a traditional nativity scene.  These magnificent creations were originally designed as puppet theaters and used as educational tools during the Christmas season.  Using recycled materials, the class will create a group szopka which can be displayed at school. This program pairs well with the Nativities Around The World: A Cultural Comparison Tour.

Availability: Featured during Metro Health Christmas & Holiday Traditions: Monday through Friday, November 26. 2019 through January 5, 2020

Program Length: 45 minutes

Reservation Requirements: Minimum of 10 students and two weeks preregistration required

Capacity: Up to 30 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $1.00 per student per session after Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: Grades K-12; materials and instructional techniques are adapted to grade level

Objective:

  • Students will apply the cultural traditions and inspirations they have learned about szopka to work collaboratively to create a class szopka using recycled materials.

Curriculum Connections:

Michigan Merit Curriculum Standards for Visual Arts:

  • ART.VA.IV.K.2 Identify and talk about artwork found around the world.
  • ART.VA.I.5.4 Participate in the process and delivery of a final product for exhibition or presentation.
  • ART.VA.IV.6.1 Recognize and describe how art contributes to and reflects all societies and cultures.
  • ART.VA.IV.HS.1 Observe and describe artwork with respect to history and culture.

Michigan Social Studies Grade Level Content Expectations:

  • 1 – G4.0.1: Human Systems

Students can try their hand at the art of rangoli: the custom of decorating the threshold of the home with colorful designs using natural materials during Diwali.  These geometric patterns create a special welcome for guests visiting during the holidays.  Students will learn more about the Hindu Festival of Light, Diwali, the culture of India, and the tradition of rangoli. Students will create individual rangoli using lentils and beans or other natural materials to take home.  This program pairs well with the Holiday Traditions Around the World Tour.

Availability: Featured during Metro Health Christmas & Holiday Traditions: Monday through Friday, November 26. 2019 through January 5, 2020

Program Length: 45 minutes

Reservation Requirements: Minimum of 10 students and two weeks preregistration required

Capacity: Up to 40 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $1.00 per student per session after Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: Grades K-12; materials and instructional techniques are adapted to grade level

Objective: Students will apply the cultural traditions and techniques they have learned to create a rangoli to take home using natural materials.

Curriculum Connections:

Michigan Merit Curriculum Standards for Visual Arts:

  • ART.VA.IV.K.2 Identify and talk about artwork found around the world.
  • ART.VA.I.5.4 Participate in the process and delivery of a final product for exhibition or presentation.
  • ART.VA.IV.6.1 Recognize and describe how art contributes to and reflects all societies and cultures.
  • ART.VA.IV.HS.1 Observe and describe artwork with respect to history and culture.

Michigan Social Studies Grade Level Content Expectations:

  • 1 – G4.0.1: Human Systems

Allow the ephemeral art works of Andy Goldsworthy to inspire students to create their own art with natural materials in the Sculpture Park. Students will explore and apply the principles of line, color, and form as they work cooperatively to construct temporary works of art using natural found materials. This program is offered year-round and is adapted to grade level and season.

Availability: Available days & times: Monday through Friday; times based on availability of classroom space

Program Length: 60 minutes

Reservation Requirements: Minimum of 10 students and two weeks preregistration required

Capacity: Up to 40 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $1.00 per student per session after Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: Grades K-12; materials and instructional techniques are adapted to grade level

Objectives: Students will explore line, color and form while working cooperatively to create an ephemeral art work using found materials in the sculpture park.

Curriculum Connections:

Michigan Merit Curriculum: Standards for Visual Arts:

Standard 1: Apply skills and knowledge to perform in the arts
Standard 2: Apply skills and knowledge to create in the arts
Standard 3: Analyze, describe and evaluate works of art

School Program

  • 90-minute, curriculum-based
    interactive experience
  • A minimum of 20 students and
    two weeks pre-registration is required. 

Reduced Group Admission:
$4.00 / Student, Plus Additional $2.00 / Student

School programs are curriculum-based, hands-on educational activities led by experienced teachers. While most programs are offered year-round, when planning your trip, please note that most take place out-of-doors.  Choose from the following:

Description: In this program, students will learn how the food they eat starts at a farm. They will explore what plants need to grow by planting a seed and engaging in fun farm chores to experience the work needed to grow it. They will discuss the variety of food grown on a farm and learn about the parts of a plant and why those parts are important for plant growth.  Students will discuss why eating a variety of food is important and will have the opportunity to taste a root, stem, leaf and flower. 

  Good summer program

Availability: Available days & times: Monday through Friday; times based on availability of program space

Program Length: 1 hour 30 minutes

Reservation Requirements: minimum of 20 students (or program fee) and two weeks preregistration required

($120 program fee if less than 20 students)

Capacity: Up to 45 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $2.00 per student per session with Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: Preschool-1st grade: materials and instructional techniques are adapted to grade level

Objectives:

  • Students will learn that farms produce many kinds of food. 
  • Students will learn what plants need to grow. 
  • Students will learn the purpose of different parts of plants. 

Curriculum Connections:

NGSS: K-LS1-1 From Molecules to Organisms: Structures and Processes

Description: Did you know that we didn’t always have computers or grocery stores full of produce?  In the past, we would have had to find our own entertainment and grow our own food!  In this program, students will compare past and present by participating in a variety of activities at our 1930s-era farm.  Students will participate in discussions about meal preparation in the past and experience it first-hand by making real butter.  They will play old-fashioned games and compare them to contemporary pastimes, as well as discover how chores from the past compare to those in the present.

  Good summer program

Availability: Available days & times: Monday through Friday; times based on availability of program space

Program Length: 1 hour 30 minutes

Reservation Requirements: minimum of 20 students (or program fee) and two weeks preregistration required

($120 program fee if less than 20 students)

Capacity: Up to 45 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $2.00 per student per session with Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: Preschool-Kindergarten; materials and instructional techniques are adapted to grade level

Objectives:

  • Students will explore the concepts of past, present and future. 
  • Students will compare/contrast past and present forms of entertainment and aspects of farm life.

Curriculum Connections:

Social Studies GLCE’s: K – H2.0.4 Describe ways people learn about the past

Description: Students will explore the Farm Garden and practice language and literacy skills in a fun play-based way!  Farm chores will come to life as children practice sequencing by sorting out what happens first, next and last and then by acting them out using real farm props. They will explore Farm animal sculptures by learning about word families and creating a fun farm poem. Students will also participate in a unique scavenger hunt by listening to letter sounds and searching the Farm for the corresponding item.   

Availability: Available days & times: Monday through Friday; times based on availability of program space

Program Length: 1 hour 30 minutes

Reservation Requirements: minimum of 20 students and two weeks preregistration required

($120 program fee if less than 20 students)

Capacity: up to 45 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $2.00 per student per session with Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: Preschool-1st grade; materials and instructional techniques are adapted to grade level.

Objectives:

  • Students will learn letter recognition and sound discrimination skills. 
  • Students will practice sequencing skills.   
  • Students will explore simple word families and practice rhyming skills. 

Curriculum Connections:

  • Common CORE ELA: CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RF.K.2
  • Demonstrate understanding of spoken words, syllables, and sounds (phonemes).

Description: Students will practice a variety of money counting skills by pretending to buy and sell at a produce stand using colorful fruits and vegetables and using play coins and currency.  Students will use a clock to time farm chores like gathering eggs or hanging laundry and will play a giant board game that requires the children to actively explore the Farm while solving math word problems.  

Availability: Available days & times: Monday through Friday; times based on availability of program space

Program Length: 1 hour 30 minutes

Reservation Requirements: minimum of 20 students and two weeks preregistration required

($120 program fee if less than 20 students)

Capacity: up to 45 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $2.00 per student per session with Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: Grades 1st-3rd; materials and instructional techniques are adapted to grade level.

Objectives:

  • Students will solve math word problems. 
  • Students will practice counting with coins. 
  • Students will learn about telling time and clocks. 

Curriculum Connections:

Mathematics: 2.MD.Work with time and money

Description: Water, water everywhere! In this program, students will learn which animals and insects live in, on, near or under water. They will explore different states of water and all about the water cycle through hands-on experiments and discover why water is such a valuable resource by participating in a variety of water-based activities.  

Availability: Monday through Friday; times based on availability of program space

Program Length: 1 hour 30 minutes

Reservation Requirements: minimum of 20 students and two weeks preregistration required

($120 program fee if less than 20 students)

Capacity: up to 45 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $2.00 per student per session with Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: Grades 3-5; materials and instructional techniques are adapted to grade level

Objectives:

  • Students will learn that all living things depend on water. 
  • Students will learn that water is part of a cycle and exists in three states. 
  • Students will learn that water is a valuable resource. 

Curriculum Connections:

NGSS: 5-PS1-1 Matter and Its Interactions

Description: Students will participate in a variety of activities to discover the different properties of rocks by simple testing and getting a closer look with microscopes. They will experiment with the power of glaciers and learn how rocks helped form our landscape. Students will also explore the rock cycle with hands-on investigations. Come and learn why rocks rock! 

Availability: Available days & times: Monday through Friday; times based on availability of program space

Program Length: 1 hour 30 minutes

Reservation Requirements: minimum of 20 students and two weeks preregistration required

($120 program fee if less than 20 students)

Capacity: up to 45 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $2.00 per student per session with Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: Grades 3-5; materials and instructional techniques adapted to grade level

Objectives:

  • Students will learn that the earth has many rock and mineral resources.  
  • Students will learn that rocks are part of a rock cycle and formed by various processes. 
  • Students will learn how to classify rocks through observation and simple testing. 

Curriculum Connections:

NGSS: 4-ESS1-1 Earth’s Place in the Universe

Description: Students will learn about the history of lumbering in this program by pretending to become a lumberjack. They will unlock the secret to tree identification using a special identification “key.” They will also discover the many ways Native Americans, settlers and wildlife all used white pines—our State Tree. A Michigan Tree Expedition journal included. 

Availability: Available days & times: Monday through Friday; times based on availability of program space

Program Length: 1 hour 30 minutes

Reservation Requirements: minimum of 20 students and two weeks preregistration required

($120 program fee if less than 20 students)

Capacity: up to 45 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $2.00 per student per session with Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: Grades 3-5; materials and instructional techniques are adapted to grade level

Objectives:

  • Students will learn that Michigan has rich lumber resources and a lumbering history. 
  • Students will learn about the importance of the white pine. 
  • Students will learn simple methods of identifying Michigan trees. 

Curriculum Connections:

Social Studies GLCE’s: H3 History of Michigan (Through Statehood) Use historical thinking to understand the past.

Description: Armed with sketch pads and pencils, students will practice their observation skills as they explore a variety of unique plants and intriguing sculptures. Students will be introduced to art and science related terms and then use the new vocabulary in each area they explore. They will record their findings with quick sketches and simple notes in a unique Art & Science of Observation journal.

  Good summer program

Availability: Available days & times: Monday through Friday; times based on availability of program space

Program Length: 1 hour 30 minutes

Reservation Requirements: minimum of 20 students and two weeks preregistration required

($120 program fee if less than 20 students)

Capacity: up to 60 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $2.00 per student per session with Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: Grades 3-5; materials and instructional techniques are adapted to grade level.

Objectives:

  • Students will learn that scientists and artist are keen observers.  
  • Students will learn that sketching and note taking are helpful tools in learning. 
  • Students will learn art and science–related vocabulary terms. 

Curriculum Connections:

  • NGSS: K-LS1-1. Use observations to describe patterns of what plants and animals (including humans) need to survive.
  • Common CORE ELA: CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.3.2: Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas and information clearly

Description: Work around a farm is certainly hard work. Fortunately, there are simple machines to make this work easier! The concepts of simple machines come to life as students move large rocks using levers, lift heavy weights with pulley systems and carve into wood using wedges. Then they will go on a scavenger hunt to find many other farm implements made up of simple machines. This is a wonderful program for making sense out of science. 

Availability: Monday through Friday; times based on availability of program space

Program Length: 1 hour 30 minutes

Reservation Requirements: minimum of 20 students and two weeks preregistration required

($120 program fee if less than 20 students)

Capacity: up to 45 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $2.00 per student per session with Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: Grades 4-5; materials and instructional techniques are adapted to grade level

Objectives:

  • Students will learn how simple machines made some work easier. 
  • Students will learn the mechanics, parts and vocabulary of a variety of simple machines. 
  • Students will learn that simple machines form the basis for many other mechanical devices. 

Curriculum Connections:

NGSS 3-PS2: Motion and Stability: Forces and Interactions

Description: Students will explore the important role that wetlands play in the environment. They will learn the differences between a wetland and a “swamp” by taking an observational walk and conduct scientific experiments about the essential functions of a wetland. A wetlands journal is included. 

Availability: Available days & times: Monday through Friday; times based on availability of program space

Program Length: 1 hour 30 minutes

Reservation Requirements: Minimum of 20 students and two weeks preregistration required

($120 program fee if less than 20 students)

Capacity: Up to 45 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $2.00 per student per session with Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: Grades 3-8; materials and instructional techniques are adapted to grade level

Objectives:

  • Students will learn that wetlands are home to many plants and animals. 
  • Students will learn that wetlands absorb water and help prevent flooding. 
  • Students will learn that wetlands help filter sediments and break down pollutants.

Curriculum Connections:

NGSS: ES: Earths Systems

MS: Human Impacts

Description: Participants will stretch, lunge, squat, jump, lift and dance their way to fitness by using world-renowned sculptures as inspiration. They will walk the mile-long Sculpture Park path stopping at various pieces to participate in fitness activities. A truly unique combination of art education and exercise.

  Good summer program

Availability: Monday through Friday; times based on availability of program space

Program Length: 1 hour 30 minutes

Reservation Requirements: minimum of 20 students and two weeks preregistration required

($120 program fee if less than 20 students)

Capacity: up to 60 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $2.00 per student per session with Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: Grades 5-8; materials and instructional techniques are adapted to grade level

Objectives:

  • Students will learn the importance of physical exercise. 
  • Students will practice critical thinking skills. 
  • Students will learn art-related vocabulary. 

Curriculum Connections:

GLCE Health Education: 6.3.1.8 Demonstrate the ability to support others to choose healthy foods and be physically active.

Description: In this unique program, students will discover how The Richard & Helen DeVos Japanese Garden is both traditional and innovative by using all their senses.  They will explore themes such as water, plants, rocks, tranquility and sculpture, through hands-on activities, observations and kid-friendly discussions.  An Exploring the Japanese Garden journal included. 

Availability: Available days & times: Monday through Friday; times based on availability of program space

Program Length: 1 hour 30 minutes

Reservation Requirements: minimum of 20 students and two weeks preregistration required

($120 program fee if less than 20 students)

Capacity: up to 60 students per session (multiple sessions may be scheduled for larger groups)

Cost: Additional $2.00 per student per session with Reduced Group Admission

Recommended age level: Grades 1-5; materials and instructional techniques are adapted to grade level

Objectives:

  • Students will discover components of a Japanese Garden, and their meaning. 
  • Students will use their senses to explore the Japanese Garden. 
  • Students will learn vocabulary associated with Japanese Gardens. 

Curriculum Connections:

Common CORE ELA: CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.3.2.A
Introduce a topic and group related information together; include illustrations when useful to aiding comprehension.
GLCE: Visual Art: Standard 3: Analyze, describe, and evaluate works of art.

Kids’ Tram Program

  • 45-minute, curriculum-based 
    interactive experience.
  • Minimum of 20 students
    and two weeks preregistration
    is required.

Reduced Group Admission:
$4 / Student,
Plus Additional $2.00 / Student

Kids’ Tram programs are an interactive, engaging and unique educational experience, and themes can be adapted for a variety of age levels.  Please note that Kids’ Tram programs can be scheduled for late spring, summer and early fall, however, are weather dependent.  Choose from the following:

We’ll be Comin’ Round the Gardens on this sing-sational Kids’ Tram tour.  Students will have the opportunity to participate in rhythms, rounds, rhymes and raps as they roll along; learning about sculptures through fun and familiar songs such as The Wheels on the Tram and Did you Ever See a Spider.  

In Let’s Get Moving, students will learn about sculpture through movement and fun. They will practice balance next to Galileo’s Wedge, move geometrically like Five Lines and learn the best ways to get their heart pumping a la Scarlatti. Students will strengthen their muscles, their heart and their brain! All activities can also be done seated as well.

During this tram program, students will journey around the Sculpture Park and discover who needs water and why. Along the way, they will have the opportunity to move like a fish, imitate a bird, and become part of a “frog chorus.” They will also learn about the many sources of water and why water is an important resource.

This tram program will take students on an incredible journey around the Sculpture Park – learning about sculptures and plants, and using their imaginations. Riders will imagine they are a mountain stream, flowing swiftly around rocks and boulders, then pretend to sprout roots, and grow branches like a great White Pine tree – Michigan’s state tree. Follow up this unique tram ride with a special Imagination Looking Guide to use in the Children’s Garden.

By traveling through the Sculpture Park students will learn a variety of tree-mendous tree facts.  Which trees are used to make baseball bats, musical instruments and Popsicle sticks? Students will also use puppets to identify the creatures that live in trees and learn why leaves change color. 

Registration

  • Please fill out the Field Trip Registration Form available HERE.

 

To schedule a field trip, complete a Registration Request Form. All field trips must be scheduled a minimum of two weeks in advance. If scheduling during our Butterflies Are Blooming exhibition, please register early. Please note: once our Education Assistant has confirmed your field trip date and time via confirmation email, then you may consider your field trip scheduled. If applying for a scholarship, groups must first have a confirmed field trip scheduled. 

Please make note of the Meijer Gardens Field Trip Policies HERE.

Scholarships

If you are interested in a scholarship, please complete the form available HERE

Scholarship funds and transportation assistance is available to groups with a confirmed field trip. Scholarships are awarded to Title I schools in which 40% or more of students meet the federal guidelines & qualifications for additional supportive services. Scholarships are awarded on a first-come, first-served basis. Two scholarships are available for eligible applicants. The transportation scholarship helps defray bus costs while the admissions scholarship reduces the entrance fee. Download the scholarship application and email completed applications to fieldtrips@meijergardens.org 
Please note, teachers may be granted only one Meijer Gardens scholarship award per fiscal year (October 1- September 30).

Please see our field trip policies for further details.

Eating Options

There are several eating options for field trips including boxed lunches from our Balk Café, a rented classroom, and outdoor public eating area.

Eating Outdoors
  • Please note that our outdoor picnic pavilions are currently unavailable due to our expansion project and the ongoing construction of our new Welcome Center. Limited lunchroom rentals may be available. Please inquire about eating options at fieldtrips@meijergardens.org.
  • Sack lunches are not permitted in any other outdoor area.
  • For your convenience, your lunches may be unloaded and left in the Bus Buddy Nook in our temporary entrance. Please package your lunches in large containers labeled with the name of the school as well as the teacher. A greeter will be available to help unload your lunches.
Eating Indoors
  • If space is available, a classroom may be reserved for your use. Please email fieldtrips@meijergardens.org for rental fee pricing. A deposit is necessary. Groups are requested to leave the room in a tidy condition. Because Meijer Gardens is a popular corporate meeting site, it is recommended that you reserve your room in advance.
  • Indoor public eating space can be found in our Covenant Learning Center. This eating area is first-come, first-served and is not reservable.
Balk Café
  • The café does not take reservations.
  • Because of Health Department regulations, food from home cannot be brought into the café.
  • Hot food and daily specials are served until 3:00 pm; cold foods are served until closing.
  • Boxed lunches are available. Please email fieldtrips@meijergardens.org for pricing and availability. 
  • If ordering lunches from the cafe, fax the request 10 days prior to the field trip. The outdoor patio is for café customers only.