Education-focused visits for groups or schools
(students age 15 and under)
The perfect educational solution for schools or scouting groups who want to explore the Arboretum at-your-own-pace! Extend the learning of an Arboretum field trip by adding a self-guided tour, or plan a self-guided tour of the Arboretum for your school/education group.
All groups, self-guided or otherwise, must reserve self-guided visits in advance.
See below for lots of fun and educational ideas for your group! Pick up your self-guided info like maps, chaperone guides, and seasonal exhibit information at the front gate or at the Visitor Center.
Self-Guided visits for educational groups are available Monday - Friday.
To request an Educational Self-Guided Visit outside of the above days contact the Learning Center Office at 612-301-1210 to discuss your request.
- Chaperones are free up to 1 adult per 5 students (chaperone count includes teachers, but not Paras and nurses accompanying special needs students)
- Adults in addition to the 1:5 ratio pay $15 per person.
- Minimum suggested adult:student ratio is 1 adult per 10 students.
$7.50 registration fee for the entire group
Please pay with credit card at time of booking
Adults in excess of the 1:5 chaperone:student ratio (or pay at the Gatehouse upon arrival)
To Schedule your Visit - Online Registration
| Step 1
||Login or Create a Profile
Returning Users login on left side of page
New Users create profile on right side of page
| Step 2
||Browse availability calendar
Browse available dates and book your group's visit
| Step 3
||Book your date and time
Your user log-in info from STEP 1 will auto-fill on the registration form.
Remember to add extra chaperones, if applicable
||Review Chaperone Guide, Meeting Location, and Arrival information below
To contact a Learning Center Registrar or to register by phone/email
Download the Chaperone Guide
A guide to the top 7 Arboretum spots for teachers, educators, and parents to bring kids for sensory, STEM-inspired learning!
Download and print the Chaperone Guide
Select Group Meeting Location
The Arboretum is a BIG place to explore! Decide on your group's meeting location and share that information with members of your group who may be arriving separately, such as parents. Suggested meeting locations include the Snyder Building, Oswald Visitor Center, or Ordway Picnic Shelter
view Arboretum map
As you drive in to the Arboretum, check in at the Arboretum Gatehouse* and identify the name of your group.
* If you have reserved a GreenTime Backpack (see Visit Add-Ons below), you will pick it up at the Gatehouse.
|Self-Guided Visit Suggested Enhancements
Preschool - Grade 1
$30 per backpack rental + $7.50 registration fee
The Green-time Backpack has stories, props and everything you need to lead a "discovery + fun" visit for a curious group of young learners. One Backpack serves up to 30 students. Pre-reserving your backpack(s) ensures that your packs will be at the front gate ready for you to pick-up on the day of your visit.
Download the Leader's Guide
Top Ten Places to Visit with Kids
1. Maze Garden
Will you lose yourself? Or find your way through Try both mazes!
2. Weekend Family Fun
Experience "hands-on plants" for all ages, Saturdays & Sundays, 12-4pm year-round; theme changes monthly.
3. Green Play Yard
It's natural fun especially designed for ages 5 and under.
4. Bog Walk on Green Heron Trail
Take the boardwalk across Green Heron Pond; look for herons, dragonflies, orchids and tamaracks.
5. Japanese Garden
Sit in the Garden House, listen to the rushing waterfall, count the koi.
6. Shade Tree Exhibit
Meet some trees that could live in your yard, and check out the little playhouses.
7. Fruit and Vegetable Garden
Do a walkabout and see what homegrown crops are ripening today.
8. Under The Oak
Build your own stick fort and crawl through the Twigloo.
9. Weeping Trees
How do some of them grow to look like green elephants?
10. Herb Gardens
The "scratch-and-sniff" idea started with herbs; rub their leaves gently and try a few!
Your Bog Adventure
Use this guide to find your way to more nature and more discoveries as you take the half-mile Green Heron Trail loop around Green Heron Pond. "Your Bog Adventure" includes 5 activities to do with children ages 5-11. You can print your own copy at home to bring, or pick up a free copy at the Oswald Visitor Center when you arrive. Allow 30-45 minutes. Are you ready to explore?
Print Bog Adventure Page 1 Print Bog Adventure Page 2
Your Garden Fun Finder
Sprout some green curiosity as you explore the glorious display gardens near the Oswald Visitor Center. "Your Garden Fun Finder" offers 8 activities to do with children ages 5-11. You can print your own copy at home to bring, download it to your mobile device (e.g. iPad, Kindle, phone), or purchase a copy at the Arboretum Gift Store when you arrive. Allow 30-45 minutes.
Print Garden Fun Finder
Download to your mobile device
Also check out:
Weekend Family Fun
Request a catalog in the mail
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Arboretum Education Office Hours
Mon - Fri, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Sat - Sun, noon - 4 p.m.
Email Arboretum Education at
Call Arboretum Education at
Arboretum Members may invite non-members to attend a class with them at the discounted member rate! Simply register for all participants at the same time in the same order and select the "member" rate for each person at checkout.
Prior to registering, please review the cancellation policy
The best chance of being enrolled in a sold out class is to add your name to the waitlist. Click the orange "waitlist" button and complete the steps, or call 612-301-1210. There is no obligation to register if a spot opens. If the waitlist shows enough demand, additional class sessions may be added.
Program Quick Links
FREE & LOW COST
NaturePlay for Wee Ones
Garden Fun Stops
1-Hour Tram Tour
Guided Walking Tours
Q&A at the Yard & Garden Desk
YOUTH & FAMILIES
Youth+Adult Together Programs
Ages 3-5 with adult
Ages 5-12 with adult
Gardening & Horticulture Classes
Gardening - General
Landscape & Design
Floral & Botanical Crafts
Pollinators - Misc
Special Access Experiences
Fine Art & Crafts Classes
Painting & Drawing
Floral & Botanical Crafts
Jewelry & Wearable Art
Stone Balancing & Sculpture
Open Art Studio
Special Access Experiences
Food & Wine Classes
Dine with a Chef
Signature Guided Walks
Education Department Statistics
Share your feedback
Your opinions are important!
The Arboretum strives to create classes that are relevant, useful and provide value. Use this form to share anonymous feedback about educational programming with the Arboretum Education Team.