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Nature Reach Programs

Nature Reach offers both on-campus and off-campus programs. All of our outreach programs enhance the science education of your students, however many of our programs can also be directly correlated to your state’s science standards.

All programs are designed to be interactive. The presenter engages the group in numerous questions to get them thinking. We utilize many hands-on items including LIVE animals and animal artifacts.

Looking closely and touching is highly encouraged!

In order to keep the programs interactive, small group sizes are best. Most programs can accommodate up to 30 participants at a time. Program length varies depending on the age and attention span of the audience, but most are approximately 45-50 minutes in length.

Our programs can only be offered on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.

On-Campus Programs

On-Campus Live Animal Tour

This tour features our LIVE animal collection.  Each group is led by a Nature Reach staff member who is knowledgeable about the variety of animals and animal artifacts in our collection. We typically focus on animal classification and animal adaptations, but are quite happy to adjust to enhance what students are learning in their classroom. Looking closely and touching is encouraged in the presentation, which last about 50 minutes. The facility allows for a maximum of 30 students. Tours are $3.00 per student* (attending adults are free). 

Raptors, Birds of Prey Assembly Program

During this 45-50 minute program the presenter will use LIVE birds to demonstrate how these powerful hunters of the sky have intrigued humans for years. Students will be amazed as they get a close look at these predators, learn about their importance and learn why many are in need of our help.

This is meant for large groups up to 150 students. Availability and maximum group size will be dependent on the PSU room schedule. Cost is $100.*

Both the on-campus tour and raptor program can be scheduled in conjunction with the Planetarium or Chemistry programs. These programs are scheduled separately. Click here for more information about the Planetarium and Chemistry programs.

For scheduling On-Campus programs or tours, contact the Nature Reach office or call (620)235-4727.

* Thanks to a generous donation we are currently able to offer FREE programming to area schools! Contact us to find out if your school qualifies.

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Off-Campus Programs

Nature Reach offers "off-campus" Outreach Programs. There are several programs from which to choose. The programs are described further below. To schedule the Nature Reach Off-Campus Programs (we come to your school), use the contact information on this page to contact the Nature Reach office.

PSU Natural History Reserve and Raptor Tour (off campus site)

During this 50-60 minute tour your group will get a chance to see our famous raptors at home as well as meet our Bald Eagle, Apollo. We will talk about how these animals survive in the wild and their importance to the natural world. This tour will also include a brief introduction to strip mining, the history of the reserve itself, and wildlife common to the area.

Learn more about the PSU Natural History Reserve >>

Outreach Presentation - Nature Reach travels to your classroom!

Check out our menu of programs:

  • Where the Buffalo Roamed: Animals and plants have been used by humans as symbols for centuries. Students will learn about Kansas state symbols illustrated by live and preserved specimens. (If scheduling to coincide with Kansas Day, please submit requests early.)

  • Rainforest Adventure: The most diverse habitat on Earth is the tropical rainforest. Find out why this habitat is important globally, and learn more about the people and animals that call it home.

  • Life Cycles/Structures: (Growing up, digging down, standing out, and blending in) Here we discuss the life cycles of insects and other animals including amphibians as well as how their colors, limbs, and skeleton allow them to hide, stand out, hop, skip or jump!

  • Animals with Class: Animal classification is the emphasis here. This program will discuss the difference between vertebrates and invertebrates. Students will also learn the characteristics of the major vertebrate groups (mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish).

  • Creatures of the Night: This program focuses on those animals that are active at night. Using live animals (owl, snake etc...) we will discuss the special adaptations these animals have to help them survive a nocturnal existence.

  • Amazing Animals: Why do some animals have spots? Why do some animals hunt at night? It's called adaptation! Using live and preserved specimens, we will explain how diversity in color, size, shape and behavior help creatures survive. Hiders, fliers, stinkers and bluffers Insects probably affect humans more than any other group of animals. Learn more about these interesting animals as we discuss their anatomy, classification and behavior using live and preserved specimens. (This program includes a powerpoint presentation)

  • Hiders, fliers, stinkers, and bluffers: Insects probably affect humans more than any other group of animals. Learn more about these interesting animals as we discuss their anatomy, classification and behavior using live and preserved specimens. (This program includes a powerpoint presentation.)

  • Creepers, Slimers, and Things That Slither: You either hate them or you love them, but either way, reptiles and amphibians are very important to our world. With the aid of live specimens, we will compare and contrast amphibians and reptiles and discuss their role in nature.

  • Raptors, Birds of Prey: These powerful hunters of the sky have intrigued humans for years. Students will be amazed as they get a close look at these live predators, learn about their importance and learn why many are in need of our help. (Also available as an on-campus assembly program.)

  • The Web of Life: Where do living things get their energy to survive? Learn about animal food habits by looking at live specimens, skulls and teeth of carnivores, herbivores and omnivores, and explore how every living thing is dependent on food chains.

If you would like to see another presentation topic, don’t hesitate to ask. We can usually accommodate special topics.

Nature Reach Off-Campus Schedule & Fees

Fees:

Nature Reach is supported by program fees, grants, and donations.

  • $90.00 per program plus transportation (50 cents per mile, round trip).

  • Four programs per day, maximum.

  • Please remember in order to keep our outreach programs interactive, we can only accommodate 30 participants per program.

  • Thanks to a generous donation we are currently able to offer FREE programming to area schools! Contact us to find out if your school qualifies.

Scheduling:

Please schedule programs as soon as possible.

  • The spring becomes very busy, thus we encourage scheduling programs in the fall.

  • We want to make sure that you receive exactly the programs you request.

Please Organize:

  • Please consult with all personnel at your school or site who wish to schedule an outreach program.

  • Please schedule the individual presentations on a given day as close together as possible to help us maximize our time.

  • Each grade, except kindergarten, may schedule up to 50 minutes per presentation. Kindergarten programs generally run for 30 to 40 minutes.

  • Requests will be filled on a first-come first-served basis.

  • To schedule a program, contact the Nature Reach Director.

Days:

  • This year we are scheduling outreach programs Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

  • Each grade should list their top three choices for dates, and we will do our best to schedule on one of these dates.

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Summer Day Camp Program and Reading Program

Pre-K Summer Reading Program

During these 30 minute sessions, 3-5 year olds are invited to join us in reading a story featuring an animal or group of animals. After the story, children are introduced to a LIVE animal and other animal artifacts featured in the story. With any time remaining the children are free to see the rest of our live animal collection.

  • Sessions are held in 329 Heckert-Wells. Sessions are capped at 15 and fill very quickly.

  • Online registration coming soon.

Summer Day Camp

Currently we offer a camp for students who have completed 1st-3rd grade. This hands-on camp will cover a little bit of everything in nature from plants to pollinators, reptiles to birds, mammal tracks and scat to our amphibian friends. 

  • Day Camp runs for 1 week during the summer (Monday-Friday) 9am-12pm, and is held at the PSU Natural History Reserve.

  • There is a parent open house the from 11:30 a.m. - 12 p.m. on Friday.

  • We typically try to announce the camp date in early to mid-Spring.

  • Our camp is limited to 15 students and typically fills very quickly. Online registration coming soon.

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Teacher Workshops and Resources

Teacher Workshops

Working closely with the Kansas Association for Conservation and Environmental Education (KACEE) we conduct teacher in-service workshops using nationally recognized materials from Project WILD, Project WILD Aquatic, Project Learning Tree, and Project WET. We can also customize a workshop for your group or site. Visit http://www.kacee.org/workshops to find upcoming workshops. They are held all over the state, but we co-sponsor at least one per year. 

Resources for Teaching

Professional Resources

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Contact the Nature Reach Office

Delia Lister
Department of Biology
328 Heckert-Wells
Pittsburg State University
1701 South Broadway
Pittsburg KS 66762

Phone: 620-235-4727

Contact Nature Reach

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