Skip to content

School Programs: Grades 9 – 12

Our Secondary programs combine an inquiry-based approach with authentic learning opportunities situated in RBG’s gardens and natural spaces. RBG is an active research site, and students are challenged to learn through hands-on investigation and observation, analyze relevant data, and discuss environmental concerns that have a real impact on their lives. They have the opportunity to build scientific literacy skills while deepening their connection to the natural world.

  • Two-hour outdoor programs
  • Up to 30 students per group
  • 1 free adult per 5 students

Science, Environment, Geography and Technology

Not available at this time due to COVID regulations

What better way to learn about animal survival than to become one? With our Arboretum as their playing field, students are challenged to think strategically as they take on the role of an animal seeking the basic necessities for survival. Students will run, hide, and learn first-hand about the natural and human obstacles which animals face every day. This program is a perfect pairing with any other program.

Submit a Booking Request

Ecosystems function thanks to a fine balance of living and non-living factors. Using identification keys and other field tools, students gather data and compare sites to assess the impact of human activities on local diversity. Take this learning back to the classroom by accessing our online classroom resources after your visit!

Submit a Booking Request

Help us control our forests from alien invaders! Students learn about alien invaders, their effects on the ecosystems around RBG, and our efforts to restore diversity to the marsh and forests. During the autumn months there may be opportunity to participate in invasive species removal efforts – please indicate your interest in the Comments section of the Registration form.

Submit a Booking Request

Not available at this time due to COVID regulations

The RBG Fishway is a sight to see! Students will see this sophisticated conservation tool in action with an up-close look at the fish that pass through. Our biologists explain the function of the Fishway, and our interpreters take the students through the complex history and current restoration of Cootes Paradise marsh. This program takes place at our Princess Point location.

*Special Program

Submit a Booking Request

This guided hike takes students along the shores of some of Royal Botanical Gardens’ most important protected waterways. Students learn about the history of human impact on the wetlands and streams and how Project Paradise is working to restore them to their original condition. Be prepared to take advantage of the ample wildlife viewing opportunities.

Submit a Booking Request

RBG provides critical habitat for many species at risk, and this program examines how they are designated, what factors put them in danger, and how humans can help. Through inquiry and active simulations, students investigate the survival or demise of species and populations. We may even encounter some of these rare plants and animals around the trails and wetlands of RBG!

Submit a Booking Request

The themes of this Grade 11 program follow Plants: Anatomy, Growth, and Function curriculum. Students will learn basic tree identification using appropriate plant terminology, make connections in agriculture and food consumption, discuss how plants are used medicinally, and learn about the important roles of wetland plants. As we walk through the forest, we’ll also look at specific plants and their special adaptations that allow them to survive.

Submit a Booking Request

Today, more than ever before, nature needs our help. This module introduces the concept of Citizen Science, a way that individuals can participate in conservation and stewardship while enjoying nature anywhere in the world – even their own backyard. With an understanding of conservation, stewardship, and citizen science, and armed with some basic tools and identification skills, students spread out in the Arboretum for a great birding experience!

Submit a Booking Request

Cross-Curricular – Arts/Language/Social Studies and Science Programs

Using nature as both muse and medium, students unleash their creativity in this visual arts program. After a short nature hike, students will create their own works of art using the elements of design. Interpreters help the class build a connection to the natural world through observation and imagination. What messages will your students make through their creations?

Submit a Booking Request

Let nature inspire your creative side! By using skills such as listening, observing, imaging, and exploring, students will learn and employ strategies for writing using nature as their muse. Whether it is for poetry, non-fiction, or narratives, RBG’s gardens and natural lands can unlock the power of literature from within your students.

Submit a Booking Request

Physical Activity and Healthy Living

Looking to escape the classroom and explore the great outdoors? Spend a couple of hours enjoying trails that take the class through interior forest and to great viewpoints. Topics covered along the way can be tailored to complement desired curricula, or simply left to focus on the experience and follow the students’ curiosity. This program pairs well with any other program to extend your RBG experience into a full day field trip.

Submit a Booking Request

An immersive outdoor experience! On this full-day adventure, students join an RBG guide on a hike through some of the spectacular and diverse landscapes that make this area unique. Students will walk from Rock Chapel on the Niagara Escarpment to the shore of Cootes Paradise Marsh. Topics covered along the way can be tailored to complement desired curricula or simply follow the students’ curiosity.

Please note that this hike goes beside a road and along the edge of the escarpment in some places and requires one road crossing. Contact us for more details.

Submit a Booking Request

Working together, a small group of people can achieve much. Led by our facilitators, our teambuilding activities are designed to break the ice, build communication, and develop initiative while also challenging the group to think as a unit. This is a fun and exciting way to bring a group together at any point during the year.

Submit a Booking Request

*Special Program

Looking for a way to get your class or group thinking and working as a team? These challenges help students develop leadership, communication, problem-solving skills, and teamwork. Challenges involve simulations and role-playing both on and off the ground. Warm-up activities prepare the group for the challenges and debriefing discussions help students apply the outcomes to everyday life.

Submit a Booking Request

*Special Program

Not available at this time due to COVID regulations

RBG’s Adventure Challenge Course is full of physical obstacles and problem solving challenges created to challenge your students and help build dynamics within your group. The nearly 5 km outdoor course is set in RBG’s Arboretum and aims to provide students with a unique and fun physical activity with an emphasis on completion of the physical and mental tasks, not competition.

Submit a Booking Request

*Special Program

Self-Guided Exploration

Come explore the gardens or trails with your class. The Arboretum offers trails through the forest down to the shoreline of Coote’s Paradise Marsh with great opportunities for bird watching.

Submit a Booking Request

Come explore the gardens with your class. Hendrie Park has beautiful flower beds and a vegetable village for your students to explore.

Submit a Booking Request

School Program Fees

RBG accepts cash, cheque, debit, VISA, MasterCard, and American Express. Invoicing is available upon request.