Outreach Programs

Upham Woods Outdoor Learning Center offers interactive environmental educational programming to local schools, community centers or anywhere youth meet. This option allows access to the center’s exceptional curriculum and teaching staff for school groups, scouts, 4-H clubs, or church groups who may not have the means to attend a full day or overnight program at Upham Woods. Many of our programs translate to off-site locations.

Our outreach work has grown significantly in Milwaukee over the past several years and we have published our work from 2019 Research Accelerator: Milwaukee Environmental STEM (E-STEM) Project Report here. Research Accelerators are multi-visit classroom facilitations that typically build towards designing and executing a field science experiment. If you are interested in scheduling multiple outreach visits in the Research Accelerator model email Program Director, Isabelle Herde, at isabelle.herde@wisc.edu. 

Children at outreach event with snake

Connecting youth and wildlife at the Wisconsin State Fair 4-H Day

How do I schedule a program at my school?

To schedule an outreach program for your class or for more information contact Upham Woods at uphamwoods@wisc.edu or telephone at (608) 254-6461, ext. 209.




How much does the outreach program cost?

Upham Woods Outdoor Learning Center staff will travel to your classroom or outdoor learning space and teach any of the following programs. All programs are one hour long and intended for one classroom (25 participants maximum). The cost is $75/hour plus round trip mileage to and from Wisconsin Dells ($0.58/mile). Outreach fees include one hour of preparation time.  Our Radical Raptors Program is also available for large school assemblies or specialized study at a rate of $150 per assembly plus mileage and necessary equipment fees.

The following outreach programs are available:

Animal Signs

Students will learn about different animal signs, what can be interpreted by each sign, and how sign interpretation can help solve the mystery of what animal left the signs behind. Upham Woods staff will bring a variety of animal pelts, tracks, homes, and other animal signs to your classroom. A portion of the class can be spent outside looking for animal signs. Grades: 1st – 6th


Through exploration of cultural myths surrounding bats, interactive games, and a slide show, students will be introduced to the fascinating world of bats. Emphasis will be placed on bat adaptations and bat-human interactions. Grades 3rd -7th

D.O.T.S.: I notice & I wonder… Supporting students to generate authentic science narratives with technology

National literature points to the need for incorporating mobile technology in experiential education. Congruently, practitioners are seeking educational programs and training which fit that need. DOTS programs are a minimum of two hours long and intended for one classroom (approximately 25 students). This session can address multiple avenues including: kicking off your science inquiry- based programming, familiarizing your class with the DOTS tool set, assisting with a larger scale data collection event, or facilitating a specific lesson that is enhanced with the DOTS tools. Utilizing digital learning technologies in science education is a great way to connect to standards, citizen science, or our own sense of wonder! Grades: 2nd – Adults. Special cost of $150/ day programming event, plus round trip mileage.

French Voyageur Program

Meet Jacques the French voyageur (in full voyageur dress) as he makes an unexpected visit to your classroom. Students will learn about the web of cultures that made the fur trade possible and the role that each culture played as trappers, traders, and travelers. Voyageur era games will be played at the end of the program. Grades: 2nd – 6th

A Habitat is Home

Students will understand the definition of a habitat and the four main requirements of all plants and animals: food, shelter, water and space. Students will learn about the dynamic nature of populations and the concepts of limiting factors and carrying capacity through active role-playing games, graphing and math activities, and discussions. Grades: 2nd – 7th

Make Sense of Nature

Discover a sense of wonder in nature by exploring with all five senses. Blindfold students try to identify natural objects and effectively communicate their experience of heightened sensitivity. Students will learn about the sensory adaptations that help animals survive. Grades: 1st -5th

Scales, Scutes, & Skins

This program will help students learn general adaptations of reptiles and amphibians through comparison activities. Upham Woods staff will bring a variety or reptiles and amphibians to your classroom. Students will have the opportunity to have hands-on contact with live specimens, which may include a corn snake, garter snake, eastern tiger salamander, painted turtle, and American toad. Grades: K-7th

For more information, contact Upham Woods at 608-254-6461, ext. 202, or uphamwoods@wisc.edu. To schedule a program complete the Date Reservation Request Form.