School Programs at Plains Conservation Center

Plains Conservation Center, with programs managed by Denver Botanic Gardens in cooperation with the City of Aurora, is situated on a natural prairie ecosystem located in Aurora. Students explore the natural and human history on this unique landscape. A Spanish speaking bilingual instructor may be available upon request.

School group tours are available Tuesday-Friday. 

Plains Conservation Center Location: 
21901 E. Hampden Avenue, Aurora, CO 80013

 

  • Programs are cross-curricular, align with Colorado Academic Standards and emphasize student-led discovery through a variety of hands-on activities and guided explorations. All programs may be modified in the event of inclement weather. Cancellations due to extreme weather may be rescheduled.
  • Advance registration and prepayment is required for all programs. 

Please make sure to read our general information before your field trip.

A limited amount of scholarship money is available to support schools with 50 percent or more participation in the Federal Free and Reduced Lunch Program. Find out more about our scholarship program.
 

 

Submit a School Group Program Request

Contact pcc.info@botanicgardens.org for more information.

A limited amount of scholarship money is available to support schools with 50 percent or more participation in the Federal Free and Reduced Lunch Program. 

Find out more about our scholarship program.

 

Discovery Day at Plains Conservation Center (Grades 1–5)

Bring your students to PCC for a day of discovery. Your group will be given a list of stations to visit throughout the day, including all three content areas at PCC: Sod Homestead, Cheyenne Camp and Prairie Ecology. These stations are a combination of facilitated and self-guided activities. A wagon ride onto the prairie to learn about the short grass prairie ecosystem is included (weather permitting). 

Cost: $12 student within SCFD, $14 outside SCFD
When: May 3, 4, 5
Time:  10 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. (please plan to arrive in time to start your program at 10 a.m.)

 

One-Day Prairie Perspectives Immersion Plus Optional Overnight (Grades 3–5)

Immerse your students in the challenging perspective of a child growing up in the 1800s as a Cheyenne Indian or a homesteader. Students explore the prairie ecosystem and participate in activities at the homestead and Cheyenne camp, cook a meal, journal and connect with the cultural history. Overnight portion includes campfire, storytelling, wagon rides on the prairie and sleeping in the tipis (weather permitting).

Cost:

  • One-Day Prairie Perspective Immersion, 9 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.: $60 within SCFD / $65 outside SCFD
  • One-Day Prairie Perspectives Plus Optional Overnight ends 9 a.m. the following day: $125 within SCFD / $130 outside SCFD

One adult chaperone admitted free for every five students, additional chaperones are $30 each for the one day program and $60 each for the overnight program. A 50 percent deposit is due at least 30 days prior to program date; full payment is due at least one week pre-program.

When: One Day Immersion: September – October and April – May
Overnights: May and September only
Class Size: Maximum 35 students

 

Life in the High Plains Field Trip (Grades 1–5)

Discover the prairie on a wagon ride (weather permitting) and/or discover what life was like for the Cheyenne Indians and the homesteaders on the high plains in the 1800s. Explore how the Cheyenne adopted a lifestyle of semi-nomadic hunter/gatherers to thrive on the prairie. Learn about roles within the homesteading communities of 1887 and how they supported each other. Learn about the flora and fauna of the prairie while engaging in real field-science which may include bird surveys, prairie dog ethograms and water quality testing.

When registering, indicate which of the following program areas you would like to reserve: Prairie Ecology, Sod Homestead and/or Cheyenne Camp (maximum of two topics):

  • Option 1: Sod Homestead / Cheyenne Camp Combo
    Class size: Maximum 90 students
  • Option 2: Sod Homestead / Prairie Ecology Combo
    Class size: Maximum 90 students
  • Option 3: Cheyenne Camp / Prairie Ecology Combo
    Class size: Maximum 90 students
  • Option 4: Prairie Ecology
    Class size: Maximum 60 students
  • Option 5: Cheyenne Camp
    Class size: Maximum 60 students
  • Option 6: Sod Homestead
    Class size: Maximum 60 students

Cost: $12 per student within SCFD, $14 outside SCFD (one adult chaperone admitted free for every five students, additional chaperones are $7 each)
When: September – November 18 and April – May (available throughout the summer for camp and school groups)
Time: 10 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. (including lunch break)
 

Prairie Ecology (Grades 6–8)

Students engage in real field-science as they explore the prairie flora and fauna. They may conduct bird surveys, perform prairie dog ethograms and do water quality testing.

Cost: $12 per student within SCFD, $14 outside SCFD (one adult chaperone admitted free for every five students, additional chaperones are $7 each)
When: September – November 18 and April – May (available throughout the summer for camp and school groups)
Time: 10 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.
Class size: Maximum 60 students

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