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Archbold’s invites 3rd-5th grade classes to discover science first hand, and learn more about the incredible history and plants, animals and natural cycles found in Florida. On this page, visitors can download field trip registration forms and access a variety of free 3rd-5th grade educational materials related to Florida scrub ecology.


Bring your students to the heart of Florida for a visit to Archbold Biological Station, an internationally recognized science field station and nature preserve. Your class can learn from Archbold’s 75 years of science and conservation, while exploring one of the world’s rarest and endangered ecosystems, the scrublands of Florida’s ancient relict dune island, the Lake Wales Ridge.

Archbold’s Elementary School Program is a 3rd-5th grade field trip program, based on Florida’s science standards, and focused on the ecology of the Florida scrub habitat. The 2 ½ hour science field trip includes: a guided nature tour, animal tracking, meeting a live snake, visiting a weather station, and exploring the exhibits in our Learning Center. Visiting classes receive a free Florida scrub coloring book and are encouraged to use Archbold’s pre-visit lessons and videos found on the page.


Archbold’s field trips are offered at no cost to Florida’s public schools. Private schools are charged $100 per class (class size up to 25 students). Schools are encouraged to bring a bagged lunch that can be eaten at the Learning Center’s Prairie Porch. To book your class contact the Education Department by e-mail or call (863) 465-2571 x233.


  • Liability form PDF
  • Teacher letter PDF
  • Parent letter (English) PDF
  • Parent letter (Spanish) PDF


  • Florida Scrub-Jays: At Home in the Florida Scrub (21 minutes) watch online
  • Animal Skulls: Animal Features are Bone Deep (8 minutes) watch online
  • Floridan Aquifer: Down the Well (7:30 minutes) watch online
  • Gopher Tortoise Burrow Explorers (6:30 minutes) watch online
  • Archbold Ecology Summer Camp Slideshow (6 minutes) watch online
  • Jumping Into Science: Summer Camp Video (4 minutes) watch online


Archbold’s Science in the Scrub lessons are classroom activities for 3rd-5th grade students learning about Florida’s plants and animals. All Science in the Scrub lessons are aligned with the Next Generation Sunshine State Standards.

Florida Scrub-Jays: At Home in the Florida Scrub (Module 1)

In this lesson, students learn how Florida Scrub-Jays rely on family for survival in the Florida scrub, and how scientists use banding and long-term research to understand and protect this endangered species. Students watch a video about Florida Scrub-Jays, then work in pairs to identify the roles that family member share.
Download all:

  • Curriculum module 1 PDF
  • Bird Search Story image jpg
  • Family description image jpg
  • Declining populations graph jpg

Florida Scrub Food Chain (Module 2)

In this lesson, students learn about the components of food chains in the Florida scrub habitat. Students watch a slide presentation, then work in small groups using print-outs to model food chains and food webs.

Download all:

  • Curriculum module 2 PDF
  • Food Chain slideshow PDF

Animal Skulls: Animal Features are Bone Deep (Module 3)

In this lesson, students learn about how scientists classify animals and how animal skulls reveal clues about how animals live. Students watch a video, then work in groups to complete a skull matching activity.
Download all:

  • Curriculum module 3 PDF
  • Skull match answers PDF


DISCOVERING the FLORIDA SCRUB: An Outdoor Education Curriculum.
Discovering the Florida Scrub is a for educators interested in taking their science lessons outdoors. The curriculum encourages students and teachers to get into the scrub and explore the habitat using hands-on inquiry-based activities. Although designed for grades 3-5, the activities and information include ideas suitable for older students. The organisms chosen for the activities are ones that can be found and worked with easily. PDF

ADAPTATION in the FLORIDA SCRUB: Elementary School Evolution Module Adaptation in the Florida Scrub: The Process of Evolution is a curriculum module with environmental education activities for 3rd-5th grade classes. Produced by Syracuse University under a grant from the National Science Foundation, this curriculum uses the organisms in the Florida scrub to explore the concepts of animal classification, adaptation, and heredity. Aligned with Sunshine State Standards. PDF

Archbold’s Florida Scrub Coloring Book is popular with schools, nature centers, and home-school families, and may be used by children of all ages. The coloring book helps educators explain complicated ecological processes and relationships in the Florida scrub. At the conclusion of each elementary school field trip to the Station, each student receives a Florida Scrub Coloring Book. View the pages online and print them for your students. PDF

Contact us for more information. Call the Education Department at (863)465-2571 x233 or e-mail.