Drop-in Discovery Booths for All Ages

Kids doing crafts at a table
Photo by Katie Knapp

Drop-in between 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Thursdays and Sundays, May 2 through Oct. 27, for free family-friendly activities!

Staff and volunteers will facilitate a 5-15 minute activity at the Discovery Booth to explore a specific topic, including plant-related exercises like testing soil, planting a seed or nature journaling. Although geared toward children and families, all are welcome to participate. Each theme will feature two different activities within the month. 

From pollinators and urban trees, to ecosystems and everyday plant uses, Discovery Booths are sure to spark curiosity and inspire an appreciation for nature — at the Arboretum and elsewhere. 

May

What do we notice about nature when we observe?

Nature Journal

Make Nature Journals

Time and Dates: 10 a.m.-1 p.m. May 2, 5, 9, 12, 16 and 19
Location: Woodland Azalea Garden
Explore nature through your senses by making your own nature journal. 

Make Bark & Leaf Rubbings

Time and Dates: 10 a.m.-1 p.m. May 23, 26, 30 and June 2
Location: Woodland Azalea Garden
Explore nature through your senses by making your own bark and leaf rubbings.

June

What makes color present in nature?

Color wheel of fabrics

Create a Painting from Flower Dye

Time and Dates: 10 a.m.-1 p.m. June 6, 9, 13 and 16
Location: Perennial Garden
Explore the many colors of flowers by smashing plants to make a flower print.

Go on a Color Scavenger Hunt

Time and Dates: 10 a.m.-1 p.m. June 20, 23, 27 and 30
Location: Perennial Garden
Explore how flowers and pollinators influence each other by going on a color-matching scavenger hunt.

 

July

Why do ecosystems differ in their plant life?

Soil testing kit

Become a Soil Scientist

Time and Dates: 10 a.m.-1 p.m. July 4, 7, 11, and 14
Location: Lilac Walk Green Space
Conduct soil testing on Arboretum soils using various testing methods.

Explore Plant Habitats

Time and Dates: 10 a.m.-1 p.m. July 18, 21, 25, and 28
Location: Lilac Walk Green Space
Explore how habitats influence plants by solving matching puzzles.

August

How do plant life cycles support other forms of life?

Kids looking through a microscope

Explore the Life of a Log

Time and Dates: 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Aug. 1, 4, 8, 11, 15, and 18
Location: Home Demonstration Garden
Explore the decomposition of a log through magiscopes and bingo.

Go on a Garden Scavenger Hunt

Time and Dates: 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Aug. 22, 25, 29, and Sept. 1 
Location: Home Demonstration Garden
Explore the impacts of plant growth through a garden scavenger hunt and plant flower seeds to watch them grow.

September

How can trees help us create a more sustainable future? 

Green tree in summer

Become an Environmental Scientist

Time and Dates: 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Sept. 5, 8, 12, and 15
Location: Ordway Picnic Shelter
Conduct an experiment to find out the impact trees have on rainfall by measuring water on different landscapes.

Become a Tree Scientist

Time and Dates: 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Sept. 19, 22, 26, and 29
Location: Ordway Picnic Shelter
Discover the impacts trees have in local temperatures by using thermometers around the gardens.

October

How are plants used in our everyday lives?

Handmade cookbook with scissors

Make a Fiber Craft

Time and Dates: 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Oct. 3, 6, 10, and 13
Location: Cloistered Herb Garden
Explore objects made from plants and create a craft using plant fibers.

Make a Cookbook

Time and Dates: 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Oct. 17, 20, 24, and 27
Location: Cloistered Herb Garden
See how plants are the foundation of our food systems and create a cookbook to highlight unique, edible plants.