Bidwell Park provides an excellent and accessible opportunity to teach valuable lessons of the natural world. For over thirty years, the Chico Creek Nature Center has provided quality educational programs on the natural systems of Bidwell Park to elementary school students, using the park as a classroom.
2023-2024 Offerings Include:
- 30 Minute Field Trip $125/per class
- 60 Minute Field Trip $160/per class
- 90 Minute Field Trip $200/per class
Fall field trips are available between September 5th-November 16th, 2023. Spring field trips are available between March 5th-May 31st, 2024. Start times are between the hours of 9:00 AM and 12:00 PM.
Following the Chico Unified School District calendar:
- Fall registration opens the first day back from winter break in January
- Spring registration opens the first day of school in August
Please complete the field trip reservation form. Once submitted, a staff member will reach out to you to complete your reservation. If you have any questions, please reach out to (530)895-4711 ext. 120 or email email@example.com.
Lower Park Discovery Walk
30 or 60 minutes - Grades K-2
Students are introduced to some of nature's wonders in our very own Bidwell Park. Join our Naturalists for a 30 or 60 minute tour through our World of Trees. Through interactive games, group discussion and observation, students learn about the history of the area and focus on plant and animal adaptations. This hike has a big emphasis on utilizing our senses and observation skills to discover and learn about our surroundings.Students are introduced to some of nature's wonders in our very own Bidwell Park. Join our Naturalists for a 30 or 60 minute tour through our World of Trees. Through interactive games, group discussion and observation, students learn about the history of the area and focus on plant and animal adaptations. This hike has a big emphasis on utilizing our senses and observation skills to discover and learn about our surroundings.
Meet Our Animals
30 or 60 minutes - Grades K-2
Students are introduced to some of the Nature Center’s animal friends. Join our Naturalists as they bring out various animals and discuss adaptations and survival skills in the wild. Students will have the opportunity to gently touch each animal including snakes, rabbits, toads, a tortoise and so much more!
Topography and Erosion Lab
60 or 90 minutes - Grades 2-5
On this field trip, students will explore how the landscape is shaped by water. Students are divided into two groups. One group participates in the topographical map station (learning to identify the natural features of the local watersheds) while the other group is engaged at the stream table (observing the creation of valleys, cliffs and deltas while learning about erosion, deposition, meandering, undercuts, head-cuts, sandbars and more!) After 20 minutes the groups switch stations. For the final 20 minutes the groups are combined and take a short hike to Big Chico Creek to observe and discuss erosion/deposition in action!
30 or 60 minutes - Grades K-4
Students are introduced to animal scat identification and its importance. Join our Naturalists as they bring out scat replicas to observe and touch, and discuss why scat is so important. Students will complete interactive worksheets and use Fact Cards to try and ID the scat. If time, students will go on a guided walk around the Nature Center to hunt for scat.
Skulls and Pelts Lab
30 minutes - Grades K-4
Students are introduced to animal skull identification while discussing carnivores, herbivores, omnivores, predators and prey. Join our Naturalists as they bring out and review characteristics of three different skulls. Students will use observation skills to complete interactive worksheets and determine what the animal is. If time, students can challenge themselves in small groups to figure out our three mystery skulls.
60 minutes - Grades 2-4
Take our Skulls Lab a step farther by adding pelts! During the pelts portion of this lab students are introduced to animals of Bidwell Park, their pelts and how they are equipped to survive. Through interactive games, worksheets and observation students touch, identify and learn about different animals skins and their varying purposes.
90 minutes - Grades 3-5
Students are introduced to macroinvertebrates and water ecology while enjoying beautiful Big Chico Creek. Join our Naturalists for a brief discussion before heading down to the creek for hands on learning. Students will use nets, hand lenses and ID charts to collect and identify macroinvertebrates, and determine what the presence of different species indicates for the health of the stream. **Students will be walking in the creek and must have closed-toed shoes that can get wet. A towel and a change of clothes/ shoes is recommended.