For Teachers

Educational Activities

The National Park Service offers a variety of free educational activities to legitimate schools and educational institutions. These may be classroom visits (within the local area) or visits by your class to the park. We recommend combining a classroom visit with a field trip for best retention of material. Please call us to arrange activities.

If you don't see what you need in the "menu" below, please call us anyway. We have staff knowledgeable about many subjects and can customize a program for you. Take a look at our program offerings for school districts below.

Current Educational Programs:

Alley Spring: Alley Mill Hamlet
Visit the Storys Creek School for a lesson in a one-room school, barter at the General Store, learn about the operation of a 19th century steel roller mill, and take a hike along the Alley Spring Branch Trail. To schedule a school group visit to Alley Spring call (573) 226-3945

Round Spring Cave

Visit Round Spring Cave (May Only!) with your school group to learn about karst, caves and the fascinating underground Ozarks. Tours are limited with a limited number of students allowed per tour. To learn more about visiting Round Spring Cave with your school group, call (573) 323-3397

Visit Missouri's largest spring at Big Spring
Learn about karst, springs, geology and hike around the largest spring in the state. To learn more about scheduling a group visit to Big Spring, call (573) 323-4236

Batty about Bats
Students will learn about the specialized structures and senses that help bats survive in a unique habitat. Discover this fascinating creature that benefits humans and learn how we can help save them, including construction of bat houses and habitat improvements.

Habitats of the Ozark National Scenic Riverways
Students will learn about the various habitats of the riverways and species that inhabit them. Discover rare, endangered and endemic species with specialized structures and mechanisms that help them reside in their select habitats. Students have the opportunity for a data collection field trip and culminating habitat activity.

Junior Ranger Day at Alley Spring (TBA)
This event brings grade school students together with educators from statewide natural resource agencies for a fun, active, and exciting day of outdoor educational activities.

Call Dena Matteson (573) 323-4814. These activities are popular and our staff is limited, so please call ahead! (E-mail "Ranger Dena")

Online educational activities!

A National Park Ranger stands in the water with students during a water program
Students enjoy a Stream Study Program with a ranger

We are never far from the lilt and swirl of living water. Whether to fish or swim or paddle, of only to stand and gaze, to glance as we cross a bridge, all of us are drawn to rivers, all of us happily submit to their spell. We need their familiar mystery. We need their fluent lives interflowing with our own." - (John Daniel, Oregon Rivers)

Last updated: December 22, 2023

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Contact Info

Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 490
Van Buren, MO 63965


573 323-4236

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