Programs for Youth
We provide nature experiences for children visiting the Garden with programs geared towards preschool through middle school ages. Our children’s educational program provides hands-on learning opportunities through participatory activities, summer day camp or individual art classes. Currently we offer the following educational opportunities:
- Honeybee Hike
- Art Classes
- Summer Day Camp
- Children’s Nature Fair
- Children’s Discovery Garden
Please visit our calendar for all current children's education classes being offered or sign-up for email updates.
Every Wednesday, 10:00-11:00am (February through mid-December) for children ages 2-5 years. Leaders take small groups along garden trails encouraging children to smell flowers, touch leaves, look for insects, and to investigate nature through their senses. They can also make a craft project, listen to a story or explore the Children’s Discovery Garden.
Reservations required for groups of 10+ children and adults. Please submit a completed Reservation Form – located on the right.
We offer a variety of art classes during spring break and summer for children ages 9-13 years old. Pre-registration is required on all classes. Check our calendar often for the latest classes.
Summer Day Camp
Each summer, Leach Botanical Garden is filled with the sounds of summer day campers laughing and exploring. In the past, Art in Nature Day Camp has transformed the Garden into a self-contained art studio and scientific laboratory. Campers had the opportunity to fine-tune their observational and recording skills through up-close exploration of the natural world. These skills inspired a wide range of artistic endeavors including painting, botanical illustration, print-making, ceramics, and sculpture.
Download the Art In Nature summer day camp registration form found in the right column.
Children’s Nature Fair
Leach Garden Friends and partners such as Portland Audubon, Johnson Creek Watershed Council, Zenger Farm, Brookside Farm, Friends of Outdoor School, and Portland Parks & Recreation provide a variety of family friendly informational booths, arts/crafts activities, music, slug races, games, and other hands-on activities during this fun and free, annual nature-themed event. Great for families and children ages preschool through 5th grade.
Nature Fair is held in mid-May. Please check our calendar or sign-up for e-mail updates for more information about this event.
Children’s Discovery Garden
This area in the upper meadow was constructed to give young children a place to explore and learn about plants in a safe environment. It is also a source of work for middle school students seeking service learning or community work.
Please review the trail map for the Children’s Discovery Garden location in the upper meadow.
Remember garden safety rules:
- Please be mindful of what your child puts into his or her mouth! Our garden is organically produced, but even some organic products should be kept away from children.
- Please keep gate closed when not in use to keep deer and other critters out.
- If you use something please put it back where you found it - so others can enjoy the Garden too.
- The playhouse is fun to climb in and climb out of but no climbing on the roof and be respectful of other children visiting.