Flexibility for weather conditions, bus problems, etc…is essential to having an enjoyable visit to the park. No two school programs are exactly alike, but the following schedule represents a typical trip at Apgar. (Classes visiting St. Mary will have some different activities).
8:30 a.m. - 9:30 a.m. Travel to the Park
Simple assignments can be completed by seatmates or individuals during this time. Point out sights along the way that relate to habitat types that will be seen in the park such as lush valleys, mountain passes, forests, river crossings, and canyon formations. You may also want to review vocabulary words or ecological concepts.
9:30 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. Meet Park Rangers
After a brief welcome by the park rangers to Glacier National Park, the ranger(s) will talk with the chaperones and teacher(s) about the schedule for the day, and then the students will take a quick snack and bathroom break.
10:00 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. Walk to Lake and Puppet Show
Rangers will review the importance of national parks and the natural resources they protect. Then students will identify "un-natural" items on the trail to the puppet show. After the puppet show, the group will discuss ways to protect the resources while they are visiting today.
10:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. Classes Break into 2 Smaller Groups for Ranger-Led Activities
Group A - Students hike with a ranger to a beaver lodge. Along the trail, they learn how wildlife has special body parts or behaviors in order to live in the natural world around them.
Group B - Students participate in stations at the Apgar Nature Center or hands-on activities at the 1913 Ranger Station and play games focusing on structures that plants and animals have to help them to survive.
11:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Lunch
12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. Groups A and B switch
This allows students to have an opportunity to participate in every activity.
1:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. Conclusion
Ranger(s) review the educational objectives for the day and engage students in a fun activity to assess their learning. "Who Am I?" is a game that is similar to twenty questions, in which students ask yes and no questions that allow them to use deductive reasoning to determine what organism they are. A simple food-web will be created after the students have correctly guessed their identity.
1:30 p.m. - 1:45 p.m. Bus Leaves the Park