|The Living Lab Program serves the local community and supports the mission of the Bellevue Botanical Garden Society, and the Interpretive Plan of the Bellevue Botanical Garden by providing quality science and botany-related educational opportunities for youth.|
The Living Lab Program is a botany-based 2 hour educational field trip/workshop for students in kindergarten through fifth grade. The program is offered free as an outreach of the Bellevue Botanical Garden Society. Teachers from public and private schools can reserve a date through an online sign-up.
The autumn 2016 sign up is available beginning June 1, 2016.
The spring 2017 sign up will be available on September 13, 2016.
If you would like to be on the email list for the sign-up, contact the manager at email@example.com Sign-ups are on a first-come, first-served basis.
If you are a homeschool parent, you can contact us and we can include your child with a school group.
Our Staff and Volunteers
Participating teachers and their students, volunteer helpers and staff teachers are asked to evaluate their experiences with the Living Lab Program. Judging from their comments, they feel this free program, funded by the Bellevue Botanical Garden Society, is valuable and serves the community well. Hands-on learning is fun and educational for all ages!
Thematic Grade-specific Activities
A curriculum has been developed for each grade level (K-5th). Each activity aligns with the Washington State science, math or social studies CORE curriculum as well as the local Bellevue School district curriculum. It also aligns well with the Lake Washington school district and many private school curriculums. We are also mindful of the upcoming Next Gen standards and are adjusting our curriculum to meet those needs.
Hey kids, test your garden skills
The grade level activities are:
Flower Power (1st grade): Students discover the form and function of flowers and their pollinators.
Super Soils (2nd grade): By observing how water percolates through four different soils, students determine the best soil for the Hens and Chicks plants. They then place their plant in an alpine environment to take home and visit the alpine garden.
Measurement Madness (3rd grade): Students measure the soil mixture for Hens and Chicks plants that they take home, and also measure tree height and circumference in search of a suitable mast for a fictitious ship.
Native Plants in Our Lives (4th grade): Students learn to identify native plants in the garden and their uses by local Native Americans. They apply their knowledge when they work together as a “Native American village” in a game of survival.
Garden Environments: Plant selection challenge (4th or 5th grade): New program designed to challenge students to find plants in the garden, learn about a specific plant and make a decision about whether it should be planted in a pretend park.
Garden Tour: Each group goes on a short tour of the garden tailored to their topic for the day. It usually includes the Tateuchi pavilion, the Shorts ground cover garden, and sometimes the rhododendron glen or the Yao garden. The tour includes talking about the Shorts family and the history of the garden. For smaller groups, the tour is led by the teacher of their last activity. The tours are geared to reflect the topic for the day.
Classroom Teacher comments:
“My students enjoyed all of the activities! They were all age appropriate and the teachers were great!”