The Big Backyard Program is a series of nature walks on school property and adjacent lands that enhances the existing science and social studies curriculum in each grade.
Observation, learning to ask good questions, problem solving, and respect for the natural environment are emphasized throughout the program.
The subject for each season for each grade is:
- Kindergarten [Kindergarten Volunteer Online Sign Up]
Fall, Winter and Spring: Focus is on the senses and seasonal changes in plants
- Grade 1 [Grade 1 Volunteer Online Sign Up]
Fall, Winter and Spring: Focus is on animals, what they need to live and grow and how they cope with seasonal changes, especially bugs and birds
- Grade 2
[Grade 2 Volunteer Online Sign Up]
Fall: Soil composition
Winter: Using thermometers and exploring snow
Spring: A place for butterflies
- Grade 3 [Grade 3 Volunteer Online Sign Up]
Fall: Colonial plant usage
Spring: Food Chains: who lives in the stream?
- Grade 4 [Grade 4 Volunteer Online Sign Up]
Fall or Spring: The Geology of Whipple Hill
- Grade 5 [Grade 5 Volunteer Online Sign Up]
Fall: Plant Parts and Photosynthesis
Spring: Ecosystems and Food Chains
All parents are invited to participate in Bowman’s Big Backyard, a nature education program, by leading small groups of children on seasonal explorations of Bowman’s natural environment. The program supplements the science curriculum in each grade and is a wonderful chance for you to share in your child’s education. NO experience necessary! Training will be provided prior to each walk, as well as general training on conducting nature education/exploration walks with children. Contact your classroom Room Parent or the Bowman PTA Big Backyard Coordinators at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The walks are written to be self explanatory, but for those who are interested, there are some training courses that are well worth attending:
- Overview Training
Karen McCarthy, School wide program coordinator and Science curriculum specialist, presents the general philosophy behind the program. Dates and location are announced in the Broadside, on the listserv and to the right side of this page.
- Walk Review Training by Grade Level
Volunteers should plan to attend a 45-minute pre-walk training that is provided for each walk. This training will review the information in the walk guide and help familiarize volunteers with key locations to visit.
Walk Guides and other documentation
Use the links to the right to find the walk guides and other documents for each walk. Every document is in PDF format so you will need Acrobat Reader to access them. You may then print them off or simply review them online as you wish.
Please read the walk guides before the day of the walk to ensure you are acquainted with the topic and walk objectives. For some walks, an online video is also available at http://lps.lexingtonma.org//site/Default.aspx?PageID=2612
We hope to see you in Bowman’s Big Backyard this year!
BBY PTA Coordinators
Christina Lin, Victoria Moule, Ming Tregay, Danielle Olivier, Lori Wright, Gary VanDeurse, Monika Manocha, Shannon Jamieson at email@example.com
Grade K-3 and Gr 5:
To be scheduled for October – mid November. BBY classroom coordinator to contact teacher to arrange suitable walk and rain date.
Parent Volunteer Training
Grades K-3 and Gr 5:
Training to be provided 30-45 mins immediately prior to walk so volunteers do not need to come separately for training and actual walk. Please read walk guides prior to training so you’re prepared to lead student groups.