Field Trips

 
Acadia National Park offers free ranger-guided, curriculum-based programs for grades K-8 that directly support the Maine Learning Results, the Common Core curriculum and the Next Generation Science Standards. Most programs involve a field trip to visit the park; however classroom-based programs are offered as well.

Program reservations are required in advance. To receive a reservation request form or for questions about program offerings contact us:
207-288-8823
e-mail

Schools visiting the park for a ranger-guided program will be provided with an educational fee waiver for park access. Click here for more information about planning your visit and educational fee waivers.
 

Spring Programs

Offered in the park:

 
Animals of Acadia: CSI

Small and slimey or giant and graceful, students explore the animals of Acadia.

NPS

Animals of Acadia: CSI
Fifth Grade
Salamanders, dragonflies, and peregrine falcons all call Acadia home and all of them are threatened by toxins in the environment. Education rangers help students explore the habits and habitats of these amphibians, insects, and birds. Students will collect data in the field and have a chance to handle salamanders and dragonfly larvae.

 
A ranger helps point out a bull frog in the marsh to a student.

A ranger helps point out a bull frog in the marsh to a student.

NPS/Bob Thayer

At Home in Acadia
Kindergarten–Second Grade
Life abounds in Acadia, and each creature has a story to tell. Through guided exploration and activity stations, kindergarteners learn about specific wildlife habitats, first graders learn about animal adaptations, and second graders investigate plant and animal interactions. Students come away with an understanding of some of the wonderful plants and animals that call Acadia home.

 
Carroll Homestead

A fourth grade class uses the Carroll Homestead as an outdoor classroom.

NPS/Cynthia Ocel

Carroll Homestead - Four Generations in Maine
Fourth–Sixth Grade
Students take a walk back in time as they explore the Carroll family homestead and discover what life was like on a subsistence farm at the turn of the century. The Carroll family history is preserved by Acadia as an example of the lifestyle of ordinary people of the 19th century in hopes that people of the 21st century and beyond can learn from the past, to appreciate the present, and protect the future.

 
Studying dragonflies.

Citizen scientists inspect dragonfly nymphs.

NPS

Dragonfly Discovery
Fourth–Eighth Grade
What can dragonfly nymphs from park lakes and ponds tell us about the health of our ecosystems? Become a citizen scientist by participating in a nationwide study of mercury pollution. Students will collect aquatic dragonflies for mercury analysis in a laboratory, and learn about the variety of interesting aquatic creatures we encounter. Requires a willingness to get wet.

 
Fire and Ice

Exploring the shatter zone, dive deep into geologic history to discover where magma and bedrock meet.

NPS

Fire and Ice: Discovering Acadia's Geologic Past
Sixth–Eighth Grade
Acadia contains evidence of spectacular geologic events. Even though many of the events that shaped this region occurred millions of years ago, clues have been left behind for us to unravel if we learn to read what is written in the rocks. On this field trip, we ask questions, make observations, and piece information together to decipher Acadia's geologic story.

 
Shoreline Discovery

Two students in tidepool school bend over to look at intertidal creatures closer.

NPS/Cynthia Ocel

Shoreline Discovery
Third Grade
Students take a close look at the variety of life in the intertidal areas, both rock shore and mudflats. To understand the wonders of Acadia's shoreline one should first understand the factors that influence them. By learning more about the intertidal zone, students will better understand the threats to Maine's shore and Acadia's role in protecting the coastline.

 

Offered in classrooms:

 
Explorers at Saint Croix Island International Historic Site.

Explorers at Saint Croix Island International Historic Site.

NPS/Francis Back

Age of Exploration
Fifth Grade
This classroom presentation on the pre-Revolution history of Maine explores the perspectives of various groups of people in relation to historical events. Students will use maps and analytical reading skills, and gain a deeper understanding of the importance of Maine's natural resources to its early explorers and inhabitants.

 
Brown Bat White Nose Syndrome

A brown bat with white-nose syndrome.

New York Department of Environmental Conservation

Bats in Your Backyard
Fourth–Eighth Grade
Bats play a very important role the environment, but unfortunately many bat species in the Eastern US are facing extreme stresses and population declines with the recent spread of the disease called white-nose syndrome. This classroom program sheds light on the ecology, lifestyle, and adaptations of these unique, valuable animals, and suggestions for how to help protect them from their many threats.
 
Beavers swimming.

Beavers swimming.

NPS/Kent Miller

Wildlife and Their Habitats
First–Third Grade
Learn how Acadia's animals are able to survive in their specific habitats. An introduction to some of the common animals of the park, this hands-on "show and tell" presentation in your classroom includes the use of puppets, imagery, skulls, shells, and more!
 


 

Fall Programs

Offered in the park:

 
Fire and Ice

Exploring the shatter zone, dive deep into geologic history to discover where magma and bedrock meet.

NPS

Fire and Ice: Discovering Acadia's Geologic Past
Sixth–Eighth Grade
Acadia contains evidence of spectacular geologic events. Even though many of the events that shaped this region occurred millions of years ago, clues have been left behind for us to unravel if we learn to read what is written in the rocks. On this field trip, we ask questions, make observations, and piece information together to decipher Acadia's geologic story.

 
Sand Beach group

Students explore Sand Beach with a ranger.

NPS

Sedimentary Sleuths
Designed to embrace the Next Generation Science Standards, participants learn science by doing science. This hands-on program is an exploration of on-going geological processes such as weathering and erosion on and around Sand Beach. Students observe evidence of physical in action and changes to the landscape. They also learn to interpret various types of maps including geologic and topographic.
 
What do Rangers do

A proud new Junior Ranger shows off her official patch.

NPS/Bob Thayer

Junior Ranger Day
Third Grade
Girls and boys learn how they can help rangers take care of national parks and earn a cool Junior Ranger patch. A ranger visits the classroom for a fun introduction to the different jobs in national parks. Kids work on activities in their Junior Ranger Activity Book. Ranger training culminates with a trip to Acadia for a fun-filled morning full of nature exploration and a service project. The final step is taking the Junior Ranger pledge!

 

Offered in classrooms:

 
Explorers

Explorers at Saint Croix Island International Historic Site.

NPS/Francis Back

Age of Exploration
Fifth Grade
This classroom presentation on the pre-Revolution history of Maine explores the perspectives of various groups of people in relation to historical events. Students will use maps and analytical reading skills, and gain a deeper understanding of the importance of Maine's natural resources to its early explorers and inhabitants.

 
Brown Bat White Nose Syndrome

A brown bat with White-Nose Syndrome.

New York Department of Environmental Conservation

Bats in Your Backyard
Fourth–Eighth Grade
Bats play a very important role the environment, but unfortunately many bat species in the Eastern US are facing extreme stresses and population declines with the recent spread of the disease called white-nose syndrome. This classroom program sheds light on the ecology, lifestyle, and adaptations of these unique, valuable animals, and suggestions for how to help protect them from their many threats.
 
What do Rangers do

A proud new Junior Ranger shows off her official patch.

NPS/Bob Thayer

What do Rangers do?
Third Grade
Girls and boys learn how they can help rangers take care of national parks and earn a cool Junior Ranger patch. A ranger visits the classroom for a fun introduction to the different jobs in national parks. Kids work on activities in their Junior Ranger Activity Book. Ranger training culminates with a trip to Acadia for a fun-filled morning full of nature exploration and a service project. The final step is taking the Junior Ranger pledge!

 
beaver

Beavers swimming.

NPS/Kent Miller

Wildlife and Their Habitats
First–Third Grade
Learn how Acadia's animals are able to survive in their specific habitats. An introduction to some of the common animals of the park, this hands-on "show and tell" presentation in your classroom includes the use of puppets, imagery, skulls, shells, and more!

Did You Know?