Science & Nature Education Programs

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To schedule your program

Field Trips

The Audubon Nature Center is located at the southwest corner of Chatfield State Park. From C-470 and Wadsworth, take Wadsworth south about 4.4 miles. Turn left on Waterton Road. Immediately turn left into the first parking lot at the Audubon Nature Center sign.

1. Bird Banding: Scientists In Action*

Downy Woodpecker in hand at RMBO bird banding research station

  • Kindergarten–Adults
  • 5- 30 participants maximum
  • Program available late April to early June 2017
  • Chaperones mandatory (1:5 ratio)
  • 3.5 hr.  program
  • $200 minimum

Most children – and adults – rarely have the opportunity to visit a research station and see wildlife up close. In this unique program, students visit the Bird Conservancy of the Rockies’ bird banding station at Chatfield and observe bird biologists (ornithologists) in action! They also learn about migration, nesting, conservation, and briefly explore the riparian habitat where birds live. Bird Banding Field Trip & Classroom Pre-visit Package: We introduce bird banding in your classroom in preparation for your field trip to the Audubon Nature Center. Choose “Migration Madness” or “Migration Mapping” for your classroom pre-visit. Pre-visits must occur in March or April. “Migration Madness” requires use of a gym space. $14/student plus trip fee for schools more than 10 miles from office address.

*This program fills quickly.  We recommend reserving your program the year prior.

Meets CAS:  Science 2.1 & 2.3, Math 4.1 and Social Studies 2.2

2. *NEW* Ecosystem Exploration

  • 2 hrs.
  • Chaperones are required (1: 10 ratio)

Everything is in an ecosystem! On this place-based experiential field-trip, learn about the 8 different ecosystems of Colorado, the interdependent parts of an ecosystem, and learn how to keep ecosystems healthy! Meets CAS:  Science 2.1, 2.2, & 2.3

3. Beaver Habitat Investigation

  • 2 hrs.
  • Chaperones are required (1:10 ratio)
  • Offered fall, winter, early spring, and summer

Beavers are not only part of the ecosystem at our nature center, but they are also habitat creators!  Learn about their habitat, their architectural skills, what they eat, and the adaptations that help them live both in aquatic and terrestrial environments.  Examine their fur, skull, and habitat up close.  Explore the ways in which their lives interconnect with and affect the South Platte Basin ecosystem.  Meets CAS:  Science 2.1  & 2.3 

4. Pond/River Exploration

  • 2-3 hrs.
  • Chaperones are required (1: 10 ratio)
  • Offered fall and spring only

Everything living and non-living in a pond and river is interconnected. Using nets and other scientific collection equipment, students sample the invertebrate and vertebrate wildlife found in the ponds and/or river at the Audubon Nature Center, while investigating food webs and the impacts of water quality on aquatic life. Meets CAS:  Science 2.1 & 2.3

Classroom Programs

Burrowing owl photo by Jerry Raskin


  • 1 hour/program
  • Offered any month except for May (school visits unavailable during Bird Banding season)
  • 5 – 30 students per class
  • Maximum of 3 programs per day
  • $6/student ($120 minimum) *Birds & Conservation (separate pricing)*
  • Trip fee applicable for schools more than 10 miles from ASGD office. Call for details.

1. Night Ninjas: Owls

How are ninjas and owls similar? What superpowers do owls have that allow them to hunt so efficiently at night? Students make predictions and examine the study skins of Great Horned Owls and dissect owl pellets to discover the answers and more. Add $3/owl pellet to the cost of the program.  Travel fees may apply. For an additional fee:  Bring a live Great Horned Owl into your classroom for a close-up experiential lesson about owls!   Call/email for specific live owl details. Meets CAS:  Science 2.1 & 2.3; Math 3.1

2. Birds Vs Humans:  Skeletal System*NEW*

Did you know birds and humans have many of the same exact bones?!  Build skeletons and play games to learn how skeletal systems protect internal organs, give animals’ bodies a specific shape, and are adapted to help each animal to survive.  Meets CAS:  Science 2.1 & 2.2

 3. Birds & Conservation*NEW*

Healthy watersheds are critical to birds and their habitats. Through a combination of hands-on activities, games, models, videos, dissections and discussions learn about water pollutants, Albatross, gyres, bolus’, how our actions can positively impact this vital Colorado resource through daily conservation practices. Embedded in this program, is the creation of a conservation action project. Using the Earth Force framework, you and your students  democratically choose and work towards resolving an environmental issue within your community/school.  3- or 4-Part Series (includes additional project consultation sessions)   

Meets CAS:  Science 2.1, 2.2, 2.3, 3.1, 3.2, 3.3, & 3.5

4. Migration Madness/ Migration Mapping

Every spring, birds embark on a risky journey to their breeding grounds. Students discover how and why birds travel from southern regions to Colorado and back each spring and fall and learn about the importance of healthy habitats. Choose one: Migration Madness (grades K-5) where children play 2 games illustrating why birds migrate; or Migration Mapping (grades 4-6) where students use maps to examine the pathways and perils birds encounter on their trip.  Meets CAS:  Science 2.1 & 2.3, Math 3.1 and Social Studies 2.2

5. Bird Adaptations

Through a series of hands-on activities and games, students learn about adaptations, field marks, calls, habitat, and other characteristics to identify birds. Through either a game or use of study skins and a field guide, the students practice their new skills. Meets CAS:  Science 2.1 

6. Bird Series

Practice observation skills, the scientific method, and use of scientific tools to observe and think about birds, their adaptations, habitats, and behaviors. Includes Bird Adaptations, Birding, and Migration Madness/Mapping activity of choice. $18/student for the three part series ($180 minimum). Additional trip fee for schools more than 10 miles from our office.

**Any of the programs above may also be scheduled at the Audubon Nature Center as a 90 minute field trip.**


Partner Programs

Ecosystems Embodied: Nature’s Choreography

3rd– 5th grade

In this partnership between Colorado Ballet and the  Denver Audubon you will dance your way through an ecosystem! In this workshop students will learn about the different components of an ecosystem and how they are interconnected before creating their own unique dance to embody the various parts of an ecosystem. Students will utilize kinesthetic learning in order to better understand how each component fits into an ecosystem like a puzzle.

Meets CAS: Science 1.0, Science 2.0, Science 3.1, Science 3.4,  Dance 1.2, Dance 2.1, & Dance 2.2

$200/1.5 hours


To make a reservation please call 303-973-9530

  • To hold your reservation, a credit card number with a valid expiration date will be required.
  • Program payment will be charged to your credit card the day of the program. If you need to pay by check, please contact our office manager, Rhonda, to talk about your options.


To cancel your field trip or school visit please call 303-973-9530.

  • A $25 administrative fee will be automatically be charged for any programs that are cancelled/changed.
  • Reservations must be cancelled at least 4 weeks before the scheduled program. If a reservation is NOT cancelled 4 weeks before the program, the credit card on file will be charged the full amount of the program + the administrative fee.
  • Bird Banding reservations must be cancelled 6 months in advance. Bird Banding Program reservations that are cancelled less than 6 months before the scheduled program will be charged the full amount of the program + the administrative fee.

Late Fee:

  • If we do not receive your full payment by the program date, $10 per day will be added to your bill until it is paid in full.

Inclement  Weather:

  • In the case of inclement weather, please contact us at 303-973-9530. If ASGD has to cancel the program due to inclement weather, we will attempt to reschedule your program (*note: not all programs can be rescheduled).
  • Any program that is cancelled due to inclement weather will still be charged a $25 administrative fee.

Thank You to the SCFD,  Xcel Energy, and the George L. Shields Foundation for their support of  our education programs, including Healthy Waters Healthy Birds