ABNC Wetlands Science Experiments

Nature Discovery

Using Senses to Explore the ABNC Forest

Grades: K & 1st

Time: 1 hour


  • Be able to define habitat.
  • Use their senses to explore the forest.
  • Be introduced to some plants and animals that live at the Nature Center.


  • Adaptation: a body part or behavior that aids in surviving in a specific environment.
  • Camouflage: a means of blending in with the surroundings.
  • Decomposing: the physical and chemical breakdown of organic material as in a dead tree being broken down into soil with the help of insects and fungus.
  • Forest: a habitat made up of mostly trees.
  • Food chain: the transfer of energy from the source in plants through a series of animals, with repeated eating and being eaten.
  • Habitat: the space where an organism lives and finds food, water, shelter and space.
  • Predator: an animal that hunts and eats other animals.
  • Prey: an animal that is hunted and eaten.


  • magnifying hand lens - 1 / student
  • pictures of animals that live in the forest

Procedure Outline:

5 min.Intro: Welcome everyone, introduce yourself and explain what a volunteer is. Discuss any rules or safety issues. As you walk to your class location explain what ABNC is and what is the purpose of the Nature Center.

10 min.Focus: Introduce the concept of habitat. Observe different habitats as you walk to your class location.

5 min.Show students pictures of animals that live in the forest.

25 min.Take a hike into the forest. Define a forest. Encourage students to look in all directions for animal shelters. Give each student a hand lens and guide them to interesting things to look at. Find a dead log on the ground that is decomposing. Let students touch and smell the decaying wood (try to find one that is already turning into soil). Ask students if it smells like dirt. Help students notice all the insects on the log. Explain decomposing.

10 min.Give students the opportunity to use their sense of hearing and sight by doing "Sounds and Colors"

5 min.Closure: review and walk to the lobby in the education building.