[ 8511 Greeley Blvd. ] [ Springfield, VA 22152 ] [ 703-451-9588 ]
School Programs are full for the season. Please check back in August for our School Year 2015-2016 offerings.
Located in West Springfield, Hidden Pond Nature Center and Park feature a pond, streams, and vernal pools surrounded by a mixed hardwood forest. The nature center has an exhibit area featuring native aquatic reptile, amphibian, and invertebrate species that can be found in Fairfax County. The center also features a classroom for the indoor parts of our interpretive programs. Hidden Pond has ample picnic area for groups wishing to have lunch or snack on site. Listed below are our programs for grades K-7. Any program can be tailored to meet the Science Standards of Learning categories listed. Some of our programs may be brought to your school, subject to staff availability. If you have any questions please call 703-451-9588.
Hidden Pond’s most requested program utilizes the pond and wetlands to teach several science SOL topics for many grade levels. Students gain memorable experience from several study stations including netting at the pond’s edge with identification, wetland exploration hike, live animal adaptations presentation, and a macro and microscopic life of wetlands nature center visit. Several educational slideshows are also offered with the program, featuring local Virginia flora and fauna, including Web of Life which deals with the pond food chain, and Croakers which introduces students to native frogs and toads and their life histories. Stream study of the Pohick Creek and exploration of the peeper swamp are also offered This program meets the 7th grade Meaningful Watershed Educational Experience requirements as it ties in our wetlands' influence on the Chesapeake Watershed. SOLs: K.5, K.6, K.7, K.9 b,c, 1.4, 1.5, 1.7, 2.4A, 2.5 a-c , 2.8 c,d, 3.4, 3.5, 3.6a, 3.8B, 3.9, 3.10, 4.5 a, d, 4.9 a,b,c, 5.5c, 6.7c,d, 6.9a, L.S 4, L.S 7, L.S 8, 9, L.S 10, and L.S 11 b-e
Students relate changes in the seasons and the weather to their direct observations of the natural world. Learning activities include guided woodland exploration and live animal adaptations presentation. SOLs: K.6, K.7, K.9, 1.5, 1.6, 1.7, 2.4, 2.5a,b, 2.7a, 2.8c, 3.4, 3.8, 3.10a
Field, Forest and Edges
Students learn more about the life cycles and life processes of their local trees, woody and herbaceous plant species. Topics range from reproduction, pollination, seeds , and seed dispersal to the role of trees and the impacts of plants on other species and the carbon cycle. This program includes habitat study, plant and tree id, group design a plant activity, and live animal presentation on the role of plants in the lives of wildlife. SOLs: 1.4, 1.7, 2.4B, 2.5 a-c, 2.8, 3.5, 3.7a, 3.8c, 3.10, 4.4, 4.5a, 4.9b, LS.11 b-e
Hidden Pond’s wetlands and woodlands are the perfect place to build an understanding of ecosystems. Naturalist educators support your unit of study by leading students in wildlife observation, animal tracking, searching for den sites and more. This program may include pond exploration, animal presentations, interactive slideshows, or any other learning activities listed. SOLs: 4.5, 4.9
Rocks, Minerals and
Students have an interactive discussion with rock and mineral samples, learn how earth materials are used in daily life, and how geology has influenced human civilization. Outdoor learning activities range from gold panning to rock hunting or soil study. Students are given rock and mineral samples to start their own collection. SOLs: 2.7b, 2.8d, 3.7, 4.9c,d, and 5.7
Insects and other
Students get to know invertebrates up close and personal as they view an interactive slide show and then catch them in either the pond, stream, forest or meadow. Students may also search for invertebrates inside rotting logs by request. Animals caught will be identified and released. SOLs: K.6, K.7a,c,d, 1.5, 1.7a, 2.4a, 2.5, 2.7a, 3.4, 3.5, and 3.8b
Hidden Pond Nature Center has one of the largest collections of live exhibits in Fairfax County. Students discover the wonders of animal adaptations as they interact with these members of their local Virginia wildlife. Students search for these animals in their natural habitats as they explore the wetlands or forest areas, check some survey sites, or visit likely reptile locales. SOLs: K.6, K.7a, 1.5, 2.4a, 2.5, 3.4, 3.5, and 3.8B
The forests are alive, even as animals hide from us. Naturalists teach students what signs and tracks to look for, and students practice their observation skills and draw conclusions as they hike through the forest and other wild habitats. SOLs: K.6, 1.5, 2.5, 3.4, 3.5, 3.8B, 3.10, 4.8B and 5.6c