Nature is the greatest and gentlest of all teachers.
Hands-on, out-of-classroom learning adds educational options and greatly enhances comprehension. Virginia's widespread and numerous state parks are ideal settings for such learning, and the system’s SOL-referencedYour Backyard Classroom program offers easy, fun and exciting ways for teachers to help students learn about the natural world.
TheVirginia’s State Parks… Your Backyard Classroomsguide is a set of K-12 science and social studies activities tailored to the parks. There are three editions: Chesapeake, Mountain and Piedmont. Each contains activities directly related to the natural environment in the region.
- is correlated to the Virginia Standards of Learning (SOL).
- has clearly stated objectives.
- has background information and step-by-step instructions.
- includes pre- and post-visit classroom elements.
- includes a list of enriching suggestions and resources.
DCR, which manages Virginia’s state parks, distributesYour Backyard Classroomsduring on-site workshops conducted by park staff. At workshops, instructors learn to use the guide to cover lessons suitable for students’ interests and abilities. Teachers also get to know friendly, professional park staffers, the park and its resources.
Teachers interested inVirginia State Parks… Your Backyard Classroomsshould contact the state park nearest their school to set up a workshop.Click herefor a map of Virginia’s state parks.
Click here(PDF) to download theGoing… Goingactivity pages covering weathering and erosion.
Please share this information with your child's teacher, Virginia State Parks make great field trips, we'll look forward to seeing the kids outside!!