Natural History

Exploring Science Together: Minerals!

Kids and families are invited to learn about minerals at the Harvard Museum of Natural History.

What makes a mineral a mineral? Find out in this hands-on and interactive program. Be a geologist for the day and learn how to identify minerals. Discover the secret properties that make some minerals truly unique. Participate in gallery explorations of our mesmerizing mineral collections. Investigate the different uses of minerals and even create your own mineral pigment artwork to take home! All activities are designed to be a fun and interactive experience for elementary age students and their families to participate in together.

When: 
Saturday, March 3, 2018 10:30-Noon

Autumn Art Explorations: Nature Mobile

Kids will learn about nature through story, a hike and art at Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary.

Join Artist and Art Teacher Mary Ann McCurdle for one or more of these new family art classes this fall. Each class will begin with a short story, followed by a nature walk, and finish up with a related art project as we celebrate the beauty of the season. 

When: 
Sunday, November 5, 2017 1-3:30pm

The 17th Century Garden in New England

Learn about colonial gardens at Saugus Iron Works as part of Trails and Sails!

U. S. National Park Service hosts  a 45 minute slide lecture will be provided in the auditorium on gardens of the Colonial period, from early settlement until the time of the Revolution. The purposes of these gardens, popular garden styles and layouts, and a selection of popular and useful plants, will be among the topics discussed.

When: 
Sunday, September 24, 2017 1-3pm

Become a Citizen Scientist

Learn about water and science at Saugus Iron Works as part of Trails and Sails!

U. S. National Park Rangers host an event at Saugus Iron Works National Historic Site for Trails and Sails! Join the staff as we compare and contrast the differences of two water sources within the park, the Saugus River and the Saugus estuary. Take part in hands on water testing of two bodies of water less than 200 yards apart. Explore the “checkup” of the water by participating in a few simple tests to determine how healthy the waters are. Part of Trails & Sails 2017.

When: 
Sunday, Septmeber 17, 2017 11am-2pm

Beach Discovery Program

Learn about beach creeatures and their habitats at the Parker River Wildlife Refuge in Newburyport. Photo: ©2013

Your family loves spending time at the beach at Parker River National Wildlife Refuge, so do many wildlife families!  Come join refuge staff and volunteers to learn who else makes the refuge beach their home, and all the shoreline treasures that help support their food, water, shelter needs. This is a drop-in program.  Come for 15 minutes or a few hours.  Kids and families will play games, make crafts, and learn about wildlife and beach habitats using discovery kits.  Earn prizes.  Look for our tent on the beach at Lot #1.  NO preregistration for this program.

When: 
Saturday, July 15, 2017 10am-Noon

Piping Plover Peeping

Learn about piping plovers of the Parker River Wildlife Refuge on this ranger guided tour.

Join park staff from the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge to learn about the federally – threatened Atlantic coast piping plover nests and how it raises its young on Plum Island’s beaches from April through August. Join a refuge ranger for a chance to glimpse this native species in its wild habitat and to hear the story of how biologists work to conserve the plover under the Endangered Species Act.

When: 
Friday, July 21, 2017 9-11am

Backpack Babies at Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary

Backpack Babies is a program that encourages caregivers to explore the natural world with their babies and toddlers. Photo: Sharon Grimes

Backpack Babies is a program that encourages caregivers to explore the natural world with their babies and toddlers. Bring your backpack/frontpack or jogging stroller and explore the meadows, forests, and wetlands with your baby in this four-session series. Each class will begin indoors with a nature book and a few lap rhymes, songs, and games about the topic of the day. Then we'll go outside for a closer look at nature's gifts with our:

Discovering Nature Through Story, Music, and Art

Kids will learn about nature through story, music and art at Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary.

Explore the wonders of spring in the enchanted woods of the sanctuary in this four-session series. We'll begin indoors with story, poetry, and imagination. Next we'll head out for a spring walk to awaken our sense of wonder. Along the way we will explore the miracle of new life in seeds and eggs, and observe insects, reptiles, birds, amphibians, mammals, and their habitats in the wild.

Adventures on the Wild Side

Kids can get outsoors andf explore the wilds of the North Shore with Kestrel Educational Adventures during February Vacation

Spend February vacation learning to survive in the wilds, track animals, and create your own adventure story. Our group will meet each day in an incredible heated greenhouse, and will venture out onto the many nearby trails to find clues left behind by wildlife about how they survive the winter, and practice our own survival skills. We will learn to become keen winter naturalists; figuring out what animal’s path we are following and how it eats and protects itself. As humans, we will build warm shelters, find food and water, perform basic first aid, make fires, and cook treats over the flames. At the end, use words, photographs, or drawings to create the story of your adventures. Hosted by Kestrel Educational Adventures at Glen Urquhart School.

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MarketStreet Lynnfield Outdoor Ice Skating

Outdoor Ice Skating Fun at MarketStreet Lynnfield
Lace up your skates and enjoy the beauty of the New England outdoors this winter season! From mid-November 2017 through February 2018, one of the most popular ice skating experiences in New England can be found at MarketStreet Lynnfield. The MarketStreet Rink offers public skating 7 days a week...

Feb Fest at MIT Museum

Kids will have a blast at the MIT Museum during February Vacation Feb Fest!
Join MIT Museum for Feb Fest, an annual celebration during February school vacation week, with daily hands-on activities, workshops, and more.  Inspired by our exhibition Big Bang Data, this year’s theme is big data. Come for a fun filled week us for a fun-filled week.
Where: MIT Museum

Robots and Beyond: Exploring Artificial Intelligence at MIT

Minsky Arm, created by Marvin Minsky on display at the MIT Museum!
Robots and Beyond shares the results of decades of Artificial Intelligence (AI) innovation at MIT. Explore the ideas that shaped AI and the birth of robotics, fields that are synonymous with research at MIT.
Where: MIT Museum

February School Break Outdoor Ice Skating and More

February Vacation Outdoor Ice Skating Fun at MarketStreet Lynnfield
Since ice skating is the perfect winter activity, The MarketStreet Rink, presented by Lahey Health, expands its hours for President’s Day and February break. One of the best skating rinks in the region, The MarketStreet Rink is a classic 58 x 105 foot skating rink accented by a beautiful array of...

Vacation Break Camps at Glen Urquhart School

February Vacation Week Camps and Programs
Glen Urquhart School in Beverly MA is hosting a February Vacation Break Camp. Sign up to have your child join us at GUS for our Vacation Break Camps, Tuesday through Friday, February 20-23. FUN at GUS Preschool Program, age 3.5-5, 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.  This program is designed especially for...
8:30 am to 5:30 pm

Adventure Days: Awesome Owls

Look for Owls at Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary during the day and learn about their habitat and feeding.
Have you ever walked through the woods looking for owls during the day? Owls are most active at night, of course, but if you know what to look for you can find their daytime roosts. Together we'll discover what our local owls look like, what they eat, and what they sound like. As a special activity...
8:30 am to 3:00 pm

Farmer for a Week: Kids in the Kitchen

Appleton Farm's Kids in the Kitchen  program is geared to children aged 7-10
In the winter, many people hunker down to stay warm, but at Appleton Farms, we make the most of the cold, quiet season. There is no better place to spend winter farm days than in the kitchen! This camp is for kids who love to cook, explore, and be adventurous in the kitchen, and out on the trails...
9:00 am to 1:00 pm

Dog Friendly Shops at MarketStreet Lynnfield

Dog Friendly Shops and Restaurants at MarketStreet Lynnfield
Animal lovers will be glad to learn MarketStreet Lynnfield has over 40 shops and restaurants that are dog-friendly. Use #PupsOfMarketStreet on social media when you are there with your four-legged friend to get a free treat at PolkaDog Bakery. Enjoy!
10:00 am to 9:00 pm

XYZT: A Journey in 4 Dimensions at PEM - Salem

Peabody Essex Museum in Salem MA. Family friendly arts and culture North of Boston
Journey through nature and activate the senses as you explore mathematical paradoxes, typographical illusions and metaphors in motion in our new digital exhibition, XYZT: A Journey in 4 Dimensions, opening Saturday, October 14, 2017.
10:00 am to 5:00 pm

MFA: Mark Rothko: Reflection

Museum of Fine Art Mark Rothko Exhibit
An immersive display of 11 masterpieces by Mark Rothko (1903–70), on loan from the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., invites visitors to contemplate the power of art to shape human experience. Opening on September 24, don’t miss “Mark Rothko: Reflection,” an immersive display of 11...
10:00 am to 4:00 pm

February Vacation Week Flyby: Creatures of the Deep

Creatures of the Deep sea are the subject of the next Imagine, Sing and Learn!
Beat the winter blahs during school break! Drop in for an hour or stay all day, either one or both days, for a vacation destination that suits your schedule. Participate in half-hour presentations at 11:00 am or 1:00 pm. We'll show you how to blend science and art based on the day's theme. It's...
10:00 am to 11:30 am

Public Skate and Learn to Skate at Peabody Skating Rink

Learn to Skate with the Peabody Skating Club at Peabody Skating Rink
The McVann-O'Keefe Skating Rink in Peabody is open for Public Skating weekdays from 10-11:45 am, Saturday's at 2 pm, and Sundays at 2:10 pm. Call today to ask about the Learn to Skate program at with the Peabody Skating Club. The ice is perfect. The Halloween and Christmas parties are a blast, and...
10:00 am to 11:45 am

Arts and Crafts for Little Ones with Colleen Apostolos-Marsh

Art Classes for children with Colleen Apostolos-Marsh
Certified Montessori teacher, artist and local mother, Colleen Apostolos-Marsh will guide your young artist in an exploration of color, shape, and texture. Using a variety of media, your child will be free to express their in a beautiful space while socializing and engaging in cooperative play.
10:15 am to 11:15 am

PEM February School Vacation Week

XYZT: A Journey in 4 Dimensions Exhibit at Peabody Essex Museum in Salem Massachusetts
Peabody Essex Museum invites kids and families for days of fun and engaging events and activities during February vacation week!  With a focus on the XYZT: A Journey in 4 Dimensions exhibit, participants will inte
10:30 am to 4:00 pm

Winter Beach Safari

Winter Beavch Safari for all ages at Nahant Beach hosted by Massachusetts DCR
Did you know that the moon snail uses its radula (a tongue-like rasping organ) to bore a small hole in a clam shell and then sucks out the flesh of its victim?
11:00 am to 12:00 pm

Cars 3 at NTL

Newbury Town Library will be showing Cars 3 during February Vacation
Come to NTL after school lets out early and enjoy a free showing of the movie Cars 3 [Blu-ray] , a continuation of the popular Disney/Pixar  animated Cars series. In this installment, lighning McQueen is forced to reinvent himself to cope with the changing world of racing and his own abilities...
1:00 pm to 3:00 pm

Vacation Week: Farm Felting

Learn about the process of making felt from wool at Appleton Farms in Ipswich Massachusetts during February Vacation!
Warmer spring weather means its sheep shearing time on the farm.  But what to do with all that wool? Learn about the time honored tradition of wool felting. We’ll start by learning how to “card” the raw wool into soft fiber for spinning or felting. Afterwards, we’ll try our hand at making felt...
2:00 pm to 3:00 pm

Open Studio at Art Haven

Things to do north of Boston
Friday afternoons are a great time for families to drop-by fand enjoy Open Studio at Art Haven. Participate in a fun activity and access to the studio space to work on clay, painting, drawing or anything else you dream up. All ages are welcome with a parent.
3:30 pm to 5:00 pm

Saturday, February 24

Feb Fest at MIT Museum

Kids will have a blast at the MIT Museum during February Vacation Feb Fest!
Join MIT Museum for Feb Fest, an annual celebration during February school vacation week, with daily hands-on activities, workshops, and more.  Inspired by our exhibition Big Bang Data, this year’s theme is big data. Come for a fun filled week us for a fun-filled week.
Where: MIT Museum

MarketStreet Lynnfield Outdoor Ice Skating

Outdoor Ice Skating Fun at MarketStreet Lynnfield
Lace up your skates and enjoy the beauty of the New England outdoors this winter season! From mid-November 2017 through February 2018, one of the most popular ice skating experiences in New England can be found at MarketStreet Lynnfield. The MarketStreet Rink offers public skating 7 days a week...

February School Break Outdoor Ice Skating and More

February Vacation Outdoor Ice Skating Fun at MarketStreet Lynnfield
Since ice skating is the perfect winter activity, The MarketStreet Rink, presented by Lahey Health, expands its hours for President’s Day and February break. One of the best skating rinks in the region, The MarketStreet Rink is a classic 58 x 105 foot skating rink accented by a beautiful array of...

Robots and Beyond: Exploring Artificial Intelligence at MIT

Minsky Arm, created by Marvin Minsky on display at the MIT Museum!
Robots and Beyond shares the results of decades of Artificial Intelligence (AI) innovation at MIT. Explore the ideas that shaped AI and the birth of robotics, fields that are synonymous with research at MIT.
Where: MIT Museum

The Stories That Tracks Tell

Kids will learn about identifying animal tracks at Joppa Flats Education Center!
What animal signs might you see in the winter woods? We'll talk about paw prints, scat, nipped twigs, feathers, and other signs of activity. You'll find out how to detect the size of an animal, the direction and speed of movement, and the age of a track, and we'll give you your own tracking pocket...
10:00 am to 11:30 am

Sugar Shack Saturdays

Visit Appleton Farms' sugaring operation and experience a New England tradition
Spring is coming and the sap is running! Appleton Farms invites families experience the time-honored tradition of maple sugaring with Sugar Shack Saturdays at Appleton Farms. Spend the morning with us and see how we turn sap into sweet syrup. Start by getting creative with some maple themed crafts...
10:00 am to 3:00 pm

Dog Friendly Shops at MarketStreet Lynnfield

Dog Friendly Shops and Restaurants at MarketStreet Lynnfield
Animal lovers will be glad to learn MarketStreet Lynnfield has over 40 shops and restaurants that are dog-friendly. Use #PupsOfMarketStreet on social media when you are there with your four-legged friend to get a free treat at PolkaDog Bakery. Enjoy!
10:00 am to 9:00 pm

MFA: Mark Rothko: Reflection

Museum of Fine Art Mark Rothko Exhibit
An immersive display of 11 masterpieces by Mark Rothko (1903–70), on loan from the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., invites visitors to contemplate the power of art to shape human experience. Opening on September 24, don’t miss “Mark Rothko: Reflection,” an immersive display of 11...
10:00 am to 4:00 pm

XYZT: A Journey in 4 Dimensions at PEM - Salem

Peabody Essex Museum in Salem MA. Family friendly arts and culture North of Boston
Journey through nature and activate the senses as you explore mathematical paradoxes, typographical illusions and metaphors in motion in our new digital exhibition, XYZT: A Journey in 4 Dimensions, opening Saturday, October 14, 2017.
10:00 am to 5:00 pm

Book Nook at MPL

Book Nook with Miss Melanie at Manchester Public Library
Book Nook is a weekly story time program for all children and families. Online registration is requested, but not required.  Come to all, or come to some.
10:30 am to 11:00 am
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