Teacher Resources

Image of UC Davis Arboretum and Public Garden staff leading a field trip.

Teacher Resources

Elementary school classes from throughout the Sacramento Valley come to the UC Davis Arboretum and Public Garden to learn about the natural history of the region.

Classes can visit the Arboretum independently and tour the gardens at any time. See below for some self-led activities you can do to prepare for your visit. 

Second Grade Activities on Life Cycles

Second Grade Activities on Life Cycles

 

What is the Arboretum? Students will learn what an arboretum is, where it is located and why it is important.

A Coat For a Seed Students will learn concepts connected to the life cycles of plants via the exploration of the parts of a bean. (Estimated activity time: 30 minutes.)

Plant Parts This activity helps students learn about plant structures by letting them identify which parts of plants some familiar foods represent. For example, is broccoli a fruit, a stem, a bunch of leaves, or flowers? (Estimated activity time: 30-45 minutes.)

Seed Need This activity helps students see how some plants use animals to carry their seeds and disperse them. (Estimated activity time: 40 minutes.)

Odes to Plants In this activity, students will communicate information about plants through creative poetry, which can incorporate personal values as well as facts. (Estimated activity time: 30 minutes.)

Fourth Grade Activities on Adaptations

Fourth Grade Activities on Adaptations

 

What is the Arboretum? Students will learn what an arboretum is, where it is located and why it is important.

Butterfly Camouflage This activity simulates a butterfly’s adaptation to its habitat through means of camouflage and the role adaptations play in predation. The goal of this activity is to introduce or re-emphasize the idea of adaptation by looking at an example of camouflage. (Estimated activity time: 15-30 minutes.)

Bird Beaks This activity introduces the concept of adaptation to students. They will use different kinds of everyday household tools to develop an understanding about how different shapes of bird beaks help birds eat specific kinds of foods. (Estimated activity time: 30-45 minutes.)

Odes to Plants In this activity, students will communicate information about plants through creative poetry, which can incorporate personal values as well as facts. (Estimated activity time: 30 minutes.)