Science in the schoolyard

by Ana Maria Caballero, Nature Education Specialist
May 28, 2019

Science in the schoolyard

Mission Hill playground

More than a dozen Boston Public School teachers and area educators participated in a two-day professional development institute hosted by the Arnold Arboretum and the Museum of Science, in collaboration with the Friends of the Boston Schoolyards. Science in the Schoolyard—Teaching Science Standards With Outdoor Spaces aimed to help teachers see the power of outdoor […]

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Learning Through Flower Dissections

by Ana Maria Caballero, Nature Education Specialist
April 11, 2019

Learning Through Flower Dissections

pussy willow examination

Last Saturday teachers participated in the Flower Dissection program of the Arboretum for Educators, a monthly program aimed at helping teachers learn more about using the natural world for purposeful science learning. This particular class followed the 5E Instructional Model, both as a way to learn new teaching strategies and to experience what it is […]

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Learning About Conifers

by Ana Maria Caballero, Nature Education Specialist
February 8, 2019

Learning About Conifers

Teachers examine conifers outdoors

The brutal cold brought on by the polar vortex lingered long enough to make it almost impossible to enjoy the Conifer Collection up close on Saturday, Feb 2. Instead, teachers attending the monthly Arboretum for Educators to learn about conifer adaptations spent time indoors with collected plant material. The program began with a general introduction […]

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Impressions from a visiting professor

by Ana Maria Caballero, Nature Education Specialist
May 17, 2018

Impressions from a visiting professor

Olga Mayoral

Recently, the Arnold Arboretum hosted a six week visit by Olga Mayoral, a professor from the Department of Experimental and Social Sciences (Faculty of Teacher Training) of the Universitat de València in Spain. She is also a researcher at the Botanic Garden of the Universitat de València. Olga’s stay in March and April 2018 was […]

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Spring marches on, despite snow

by Ana Maria Caballero, Nature Education Specialist
March 14, 2018

Spring marches on, despite snow

spring under snow

Boston educators entered the landscape this past Saturday (March 10) searching for signs of spring, and boy, were there many! Among chirping birds, the red-winged blackbird made an appearance, as did a few woodpeckers. Pairs of red-breasted robins hunted for nesting materials while evading a juvenile red-tailed hawk overhead. Teachers were fascinated by the large, […]

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Teachers learn about conifers

by Ana Maria Caballero, Nature Education Specialist
February 7, 2018

Teachers learn about conifers

fir close observation

On Saturday, February 3, Boston area educators gathered in the Hunnewell Building Lecture Hall for this month’s Arboretum for Educators event highlighting conifer adaptations. Hands-on exploratory activities and a short walk near the Hunnewell Building allowed teachers to discover ways to identify four members of the Pinaceae, or pine family: fir (Abies spp.), spruce (Picea […]

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Tree Architecture Primer

by Ana Maria Caballero, Nature Education Specialist
January 10, 2018

Tree Architecture Primer

silver maple drawing

Despite the bitter cold on Saturday, January 6, the Arboretum for Educators program “Examining Tree Architecture” went ahead (almost) as planned. Andrew Gapinsky, Manager of Horticulture, used photographs to show attending educators the many factors behind a tree’s shape, and why it looks the way it does. Teachers also experimented with documenting tree shape through […]

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Teachers search for tree bark

by Ana Maria Caballero, Nature Education Specialist
December 5, 2017

Teachers search for tree bark

Teacher examines paperbark maple

On Saturday, December 2, a group of Boston area teachers searched for trees whose bark resembled string cheese, camo pants, saggy socks, or peeling paint! They found seven son flower (Heptacodium miconioides 1549-80*B), Japanese stewartia (Stewartia pseudocamellia 8-43*A), purple European beech (Fagus sylvatica ‘Atropunicea‘ 452-51*A), and paperbark maple (Acer griseum 279-62*A), among many other examples of trees with […]

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Investigating Winged Seeds

by Ana Maria Caballero, Nature Education Specialist
November 8, 2017

Investigating Winged Seeds

dropping samaras

In Massachusetts, engineering and technology curricula standards for Kindergarten through second grade require that students be taught how to test and compare the strengths and weaknesses of different objects intended to solve the same design problem. At the Arnold Arboretum, teachers from Boston area schools gathered on Saturday, November 4 to do just that, using […]

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Teachers Study Flowers and Pollinators

by Ana Maria Caballero, Nature Education Specialist
June 6, 2017

Teachers Study Flowers and Pollinators

Educators examine azalea flowers

The Arboretum for Educators group took advantage of the spectacular blooms along Meadow Road for this month’s session. Teachers were tasked with carefully observing the flowers of a cluster of azaleas found next to the centenarian cork tree (phellodendron amurense var. Lavellei 7544-B) and sketching a perfect open flower in the center of their paper. […]

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