Elementary School Programs at Genovesi Environmental Study Center

Who Lives There? (Pre-K)

Explore different animal habitats and discover who calls these habitats home. Young learners will investigate different animal habitats, characteristics and adaptations. Through hands-on activities learners will create a craft they can take home. Meet some of the animals at GESC and learn up close their adaptations.


Our Five Senses (Pre-K, K)

Through a series of hands on activities, young learners will uncover the five senses. Learners will meet some of the animals at GESC to learn how they use their senses to survive and thrive.


Sweet Peas (Pre-K, K)

Young scientists will learn the importance of plants by engaging in a series of hands-on activities. Learners will discover that plants are living things that need air, water, nutrients and light in order to live and thrive. Learners will begin to identify plant parts by creating a craft which they can take home. Learners will identify the differences between fruits and vegetables and discover where their food comes from.


Amazing Amphibians (Grades K-2)

Examine LIVE species of amphibians! Identify physical characteristics of frogs and toads and compare them to other animals at GESC to understand their anatomy. Learners will practice observation skills, engage in sensory experiences, and explore adaptations that allow amphibians to survive and thrive in the wild.


Incredible Insects (Grades K-2)

Identify the physical characteristics of insects and discover their various forms, colors and adaptations. Encounter a variety of insects both indoors and outdoors, observe insect behaviors and discover the life stages from eggs to adults. Learners will be introduced to the features that distinguish an insect from other invertebrates and will explore real world scenarios regarding insect management and control to maintain the health of an ecosystem.

Plants, Pollinators, and Me! (Grades K-2) 

Plants, pollinators, and people depend on each other in many ways! Students will investigate these relationships by exploring plant parts, learning about different types of pollinators, observing plants and pollinators in our urban farm, and learning the importance of pollinators through a craft. Young scientists will see firsthand how we are all interconnected! (SEASONAL CLASS – not available during December, January, February, and March)

And in case anyone was wondering….the bees are getting their own class Spring 2020.


Plant Power Jr. (Grades 1, 2)

Junior scientists will learn about plant parts and how they help with growth, survival and reproduction. Through hands-on learning, they will create a craft that helps them identify the plant parts. Learners will discover that plants are living things and will continue their learning back in the classroom by observing the growth of a seed as it sprouts and grows into a bean plant.


Tools of the Trade: Introduction to Scientific Instruments (Grades 3, 4)

Get a jump start on the skills needed to become a great scientist. Learners will rotate through a series of stations to practice science process skills using GESC’s resources.


Plant Power (Grades 3-5)

Young scientists will investigate how humans rely on plants in their everyday lives. They will learn how the structures of plant parts support growth, survival and reproduction. Through observation with a series of different plants, students will identify plant adaptations and defense mechanisms for plant survival. The learning will continue back in your classroom with the observation of seed germination, sprouting and development of a mature plant.


Eat or be Eaten (Grades 3-5)

Investigate the predator/prey relationships within an ecosystem. Deconstruct an owl pellet, construct an interactive Muir Web and observe live predator/prey relationships at GESC. Learners will be introduced to the fundamentals of energy transfer as it relates to the food chain and delve into the complicated connections within the food web.

Wonderful World of Water (Grades 3-5)

New York City’s urban ecosystem includes many different kinds of aquatic habitats, such as freshwater ponds, brackish wetlands, and marine coastline, each of which supports unique organisms. Young scientists will explore many of these aquatic habitats here at GESC. Students will view microorganisms using microscopes, learn about NYC’s drinking water supply, and learn how they can conserve water. (SEASONAL CLASS – not available during December, January, February, and March)

Elementary Hydroponics (Grades 4-5)

In small groups, students will set up, maintain, monitor, and harvest leafy greens and herbs in their own mini hydroponic system. Students will learn about water chemistry, plant nutrients, healthy eating, data collection, and photosynthesis in action.

Zoom into Microbiology (Grade 5)

Observe the hidden world of microorganisms. Learners will investigate the micro-world by learning to prepare slides and observe protozoa and algae. Uncover the secret lives of these tiny creatures and how they support plant life. Using microscopes to view organisms harvested at GESC, learners will discover how to harvest their own, be introduced to inquiry-based process skills and tools such as microscopes and slide preparation, and explore the unseen kingdoms of life.


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