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Alabama 4-H Science School

Day Programs

Day Program Options

All courses are offered as 1- or 2-hour classes. They are all tiered to grade-specific lesson plans that align with Alabama State Standards and Next Generation Science Standards unless otherwise specified.

Science-Based Programs

holding a snake in her hands


One of our most popular classes! Students touch, observe, and learn about reptiles and amphibians native to Alabama. Many misconceptions about these animals will be discussed, and students will see how beneficial they are to our natural world.

children hiking a forest trail

Out on a Limb

Join us for an in-depth look at our forest ecosystem. The focus of this class will be to explore the forest floor, learn about the adaptations of both plants and animals, and understand the connections between living and nonliving factors in an ecosystem. Students may also enjoy a hike through seldom-seen areas of the property. If this hike through the forest is an activity of interest, please consider a 2-hour program and inform the program coordinator of this request. We recommend this as a 1-hour program for 3rd grade and younger.

boys putting worms on the hooks of their fishing poles

Something’s Fishy

Take a closer look at the largest group of vertebrates in the world—fish. Examine habitat variations,  unique adaptations, and get to go fishing. Students will play various games to understand the challenges fish face and how they adapt.

boys at a picnic table examining bugs

What’s Buggin’ You

This class introduces students to the diverse and fascinating world of insects through hands-on exploration and collection. Enjoy activities designed to examine insect adaptations and behaviors. Learn to see the world through the eyes of bugs and better understand their vital role in our environment. We recommend this as a 1-hour program for 4th grade and younger.

owl perched on a handler's arm

Friends of a Feather

Students will learn about the world of birds through observation, discussion, and various games. Beak adaptations, toe arrangements, and behaviors are just a few topics to explore during this class. Students will also meet a small live bird of prey. May be taken in conjunction with the Raptor Trek Evening Program.

girls examining soil from the lake's edge.

Lake Living

Explore the aquatic habitat of Lay Lake and discover the amazing world below the surface. Wear old clothes because we will be using boots, nets, stereoscopes, and a dichotomous key to collect, examine, and study aquatic insects and other water critters. Students will learn to make a solid connection between biodiversity and the health of an ecosystem.

checking the clarity of the water from the dock

Rivers and Reservoirs

Focal point of this class is the history of the Coosa River. Learn the importance of watersheds and the information one can gather from abiotic testing of a body of water. Students will discuss watersheds and the effects of pollution on bodies of water. They will also conduct chemical tests of Lay Lake. This class is recommended for 6th grade and higher.

bee on a flower

Bee Wild

This class introduces the study of pollination, soil texture and composition, and basic plant anatomy. Students will learn through the use of visuals, games and hands on scientific collection. Students may have the opportunity to help weed, water and pull plants to give the kitchen. (Involvement in the garden is depend on season and the stages of the plants being grown.)

storm clouds

COMING SOON — Weather or Not

Rain? Snow? Tornado? Hurricane? Weather or Not introduces the concepts of meteorology and climatology. Through the use of various data collection devices, students should have a greater understanding of weather patterns and be able to differentiate between weather and climate. Students will also have the opportunity to participate in various experiments to demonstrate certain weather events.

Science- & Navigation-Based Programs

getting the campfire area ready

Survivor: Coosa River

Keeping a positive mental attitude and having skills to survive are essential skills when lost in a forest. Students will work together as a team to complete hands-on activities to understand what to do if you’re lost in the wilderness. Learn about  creating a fire, building a shelter, and purifying water as well as strategies for trip planning and preparation. Other skills introduced to students may include compass reading and Alabama plant identification.

campers checking their compasses

Lost and Found

The ability to orient and read a map is a valuable skill for all to have. This class focuses on the different types of maps and gives students an opportunity to practice using maps to find their way around camp. Through proper use of their maps, students will participate in a beginner and/or advanced letter scavenger hunt. Suitable for all grades. We recommend this as a 1-hour program for 6th grade and OLDER.

getting ready to race

Team Navigation

This course for 4th grade and older is a walk-through of technological advancements in our navigational tools. Students will begin with compasses and topographic maps to learn orienteering skills. They will use a GPS unit to participate in a scavenger hunt as they become comfortable with simple-to-advanced technology.

getting ready to navigate the course

Amazing Race

This is an opportunity for students to take our Team Navigation class to the next level through the use of GPS units to find waypoints all around the camp. Students will work together to complete various tasks and challenges to earn their group the most points possible. Prizes are determined by the lead teacher for the winning group.

Outdoor Adventure Programs

arrow notched, aimes, and ready to shoot


Recommended for 5th grade and up Students will learn the basics of archery under the supervision of our certified instructors. They will master proper safety procedures while at the archery range as well as learn techniques for shooting with an emphasis on hitting the target, not necessarily the bull’s eye. This program is recommended as a 1-hour program if your group size is less than 15.

kids in canoes paddling away from the dock


Students are given basic canoe instructions for safety and maneuvering before venturing onto the water to try for themselves. The instructor (a certified lifeguard and/or Small Craft Safety certified) will cover canoe techniques, procedures, and basic water safety. All students must wear a personal flotation device (PFD) at all times and are checked out by trained staff before being allowed to enter their vessel.

*NOTE: For the safety of our students we REQUIRE that students who have not entered 4th grade have an adult for EACH boat on the water to participate in this program.

boys in life vests

New Games

The class is designed to promote cooperation, trust, and coordination through traditional and non-traditional field game activities. Students are given the opportunity to run and play while interacting with their peers and team building. Recommended for 4th grade and younger.

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Team Initiatives

(Pre-Requisite for Challenge Course)

4th Grade and up. Students are introduced to the concepts involved with teamwork, team building, and problem-solving by the use of Initiatives of “Field Activities.” Activities will differ from group to group as instructors feel out the strengths of their team. This program may be taken by itself or as a precursor to the Challenge Course.

assisting a group member over the low ropes wall

Challenge Course

5th Grade and up. Students will learn the importance of teamwork and problem solving by attempting elements found on our Low Ropes Course. Again, elements will differ from group to group as instructors feel out the strengths of their team. Participation in these elements does not involve wearing a harness. All groups will begin their Challenge Course Program with “Ground Initiatives” and will not proceed onto the course until the instructor feels it is safe to do so. Required to take in combination with Team Initiatives (2 Hour activity).

owl perched on handlers arm

Climbing Wall

4th Grade and up. Students will set goals and attempt to ascend our 35-foot rock climbing wall. Encouraged by their peers and led by a certified climbing wall instructor, students will truly enjoy this thrilling experience. Helmets and harnesses are required and provided. This program is recommended as a 1-hour program if your group size is less than 15.

clove hop

The Clover Hop

4th Grade and up. In this group activity, participants are harnessed in and traverse a course of swinging clovers 20 feet in the air while their peers assist by keeping the clovers stable from the ground. This is a combination of high rope and team-building elements. All equipment provided.

getting harnessed into the giant swing

Giant Swing

5th Grade and up. Our swing offers students a chance to face their fears while depending on their team. Helmets and harnesses are required and provided.

*Note: This activity is Challenge by Choice, but participation may also be limited if students are too small to secure a harness.