Afternoon Activities/Home School Programs

Thu Sep 29 2022 at 01:00 pm to 02:15 pm

Wissahickon Environmental Center (Tree House) | Philadelphia

This is a series of nature themed mostly outdoor activities and lessons aimed at elementary school aged children. Topic changes weekly.
About this Event

Afternoon Activities/ Homeschool Lessons

Join us for weekly themed, 1-1.5 hour activities and lessons on most Tuesday and Thursday afternoons. We can accommodate requests for other times and dates by appointment for your group. Equipment and materials are provided. These programs are geared for elementary school aged children with caregivers. We can adapt programs to the needs of your group. Must RSVP $5 per child.

Insect Sweep

We will use sweep nets to collect insects and spiders to identify and release.

Tuesday 9/6 and Thursday 9/8 at 1 p.m.

Wissahickon Warblers

Lets see how many of these feathered gems we can find during the peak of songbird migration. We will walk and talk about bird migration. This program requires the use of binoculars.

Tuesday 9/13 and Thursday 9/15 at 1 p.m.

Creek Study

Lets learn about biodiversity and bioindicators. We will pick up rocks in the shallows to see what critters live underneath. Kids with water shoes can help use the kick net in knee-high water. If we have a few adventurous adults we can even use a seine to catch minnows!

Tuesday 9/27 and Thursday 9/29 at 1 p.m.


We will set up a mobile classroom in Andorra Meadow to teach kids about raptor migration. We will also be keeping an eye on the sky to see some of these majestic birds as they pass over on their journey south. Additionally will learn how birds use weather and physics to migrate using the least amount of energy possible.

Tuesday 10/4 and Thursday 10/6 at 1 p.m.

How Plants Move

Plants don’t have legs, wings, or fins; so how do they expand their range? We will walk and talk through the forest and meadow learning about seed dispersal.

Tuesday 10/11 and Thursday 10/13 at 1 p.m.

Meadow Magic

Andorra Meadow becomes our outdoor classroom as we observe leaves changing color while goldenrod and other aster species are in bloom. We will also discuss plant ecology and physiology along the way.

Tuesday 10/18 and Thursday 10/20 at 1 p.m.

Squirrels and Nuts

How many species of squirrel live in Philadelphia? Lets try to see as many as we can while we learn how they prepare for winter. We will learn how trees have adapted to both defend against and benefit from squirrels.

Tuesday 10/25 and Thursday 10/27 at 1 p.m.

Eaters of the Dead

What happens to animals and plants when they die? Which animals specialize in scavenging? We will walk, talk, look around, and flip logs to answer these questions about nutrient cycling.

Tuesday 11/1 and Thursday 11/3 at 1 p.m.

Crabapple Feast

Andorra Meadow has dozens of crabapple and dogwood trees whose berries attract thousands of birds that eat them when they ripen in cooler weather. Let’s learn why these trees are giving away free carbs!

Tuesday 11/6 and Thursday 11/18 at 1 p.m.

Cha-Cha-Changes (Adaptations to Winter)

Why do trees drop their leaves? Which animals change color or grow fluffer coats? How do cold blooded animals not freeze? This indoor/outdoor lesson will address these burning questions.

Tuesday 11/13 and Thursday 11/15 at 1 p.m.

Better National Bird

This mostly indoor lesson will be a little history lesson on why the Bald Eagle may not have been a unanimous choice for our national bird; and why the Wild Turkey might have been a better choice. We will learn how both of these species have rebounded in the USA. Children must be able to endure a long winded but lively lecture.

Monday 11/20 and Tuesday 11/22 at 1 p.m.

Mammal Show and Tell and Track Casting

Learn what mammals live in the Wissahickon with this mostly indoor and mostly hands-on lesson featuring mammal artifacts. We will take a short but silent walk to try and spot some local mammals and make casts of their tracks.

Tuesday 12/6 and Thursday 12/8 at 1 p.m.

Oh Deer

Tuesday 12/13 and Thursday 12/15 at 1 p.m.

Lets learn about Pennsylvian’s state mammal, and the other species of deer that do or did occur here. This activity features some artifacts and a craft.

Happy Holly Day

Tuesday 12/19 and Wednesday 12/21 at 1 p.m.

The Wissahickon has at least 5 species of holly growing in the park. Let's learn which ones are native, and why some are evergreen and spikey and some are not.


Event Venue & Nearby Stays

Wissahickon Environmental Center (Tree House), 300 West Northwestern Avenue, Philadelphia, United States


USD 5.00

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