See, touch and feel nature at Virginia Living Museum

11/19/2010
nature field trip

Students of all ages see, touch and experience science like never before at the Virginia Living Museum, the mid-Atlantic region’s premier science education facility. The museum introduces students to more than 250 living species native to Virginia through exhibits, discovery centers and interactive hands-on activities. All of the museum’s exhibits correlate with and reinforce Virginia’s Standards of Learning for Science (SOLs) and national science standards. While taking a tour of the geographic regions of Virginia, students can observe: image

  • Live animals and plants in their natural habitats.
  • Plant and animal life cycles, food chains and food webs.
  • Animal survival adaptations for finding food and shelter, rearing young, avoiding predators and defense.
  • Animal migration, camouflage and hibernation.
  • Endangered and threatened species.
  • Vertebrates and invertebrates.
  • The importance of conserving Virginia’s animal, plant and mineral. resources.
  • Habitats of pond, forest, stream, Chesapeake Bay, cypress swamp, mountain cove, cave and more.
  • Virginia’s prehistoric past: rocks, minerals, fossils.
  • Phases of the moon, reasons for the seasons, earth’s revolution and rotation, planets in our solar system.

Each exhibit tells a story. There is the predator-prey relationship between the chipmunk and the corn snake; the defensive mechanisms of the porcupine fish, and the complex interrelationships of the animals and plants that inhabit a cypress swamp.

Not only is the museum a wonderful place for a school field trip, its professionally trained educators present enriching natural science curricula that are grade-level targeted and correlated to national standards. Students in grades six-12 can experience amphibians, fossils, minerals, weather or real-world environmental challenges in science labs.

In the museum planetarium, students visit the planets, travel to a black hole, observe spinning galaxies or study the earth from space. The state-of-the-art digital projection system can project a view of the skies from anywhere on Earth across a time period of 200,000 years, or as seen from any other known body in the universe. These SOL-correlated classes are offered in addition to public planetarium shows.

The museum also offers 20-minute small group and assembly-style programs that can be added to a self-guided visit. These fast-paced programs enable students to get up close and personal with wild animals and touch real museum specimens.

The museum is located between Williamsburg and Norfolk/Virginia Beach at 524 J. Clyde Morris Blvd., Newport News (I-64, exit 258-A).

For more information call 757-595-1900 or visit www.thevlm.org. Call 757-595-9135 for group reservations.

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