Ecosystem Architects


What is an ecosystem? Ecosystems are the complex interaction of all the living and nonliving aspects of a particular area. The plants, animals, micro-organisms, water, nutrients, energy and air are … Read more

To Zone or Not to Zone

land use map

There are many issues involved when we are deciding how to utilize the land and our natural resources. How do we decide where to build new housing developments? How do … Read more

Citizen Science

testing o2 levels

Citizen science projects in the classroom combine useful observation or data collection with an opportunity for students to learn more about scientific principles, problems, and processes as well as helping … Read more

Citizen Science is for the Birds

chickadee at feeder

Watching birds, feeding birds, and learning about birds is a great way to get students excited! These activities can carry over to family time as well. Feeder birds (song birds) … Read more

Wild about Winter Wildlife


Hibernation is one of many adaptations to the cold and decreased food supplies of Iowa winters. Most mammals, including people, tend to slow down a little during the winter. True … Read more

Let’s Talk Turkey


Let’s talk turkey. Fall is the season for this noble animal, an historic bird and Benjamin Franklin’s pick for national bird. Turkeys have run wild through the United States for … Read more

Signs of Fall

oak tree

Lead students on a walk through a wooded area, schoolyard, local park, or neighborhood sidewalk to look for signs of fall and investigate why leaves of deciduous trees change color. … Read more

The Very Last Passenger Pigeon

passenger pigeon

“There will always be pigeons in books and museums, but these are effigies and images, dead to all hardships and all delights. They know no urge of the seasons, they … Read more

Phenomena and Authentic Data

cricket frog

All ages of students can prepare to be our next generation of biologists and scientists. Collecting, analyzing, and interpreting authentic (real-world) data is an important piece in all scientific investigations. … Read more

Things to do in your backyard!

shelter building

Share these ideas with your own children, the neighborhood group, your childcare provider, and think about adapting some of these ideas for the schoolyard playground and classroom! The loose-parts of … Read more

Get out! Go Camping!


Join other families all across the country stepping outside to go camping – whether out in their backyards or at a campground – as part of the Great American Campout. … Read more