Educational opportunities for all ages

Learning comes alive when students from 3 to 103 participate in The Institute’s educational programs and workshops.

For school children, a variety of grade-level programs featuring hands-on activities and discovery-based learning methods are offered during fall and spring sessions.

During the environmental programs, rich, firsthand experience in the natural world helps students understand how nature works and what role humans play in the ecosystem.
From early childhood sensory activities and introductory concepts in ecology to more advanced scientific exploration including watershed and wetland studies, students are immersed in the beauty and wonder of the natural environment.

Programs contain cultural history components, too. Students step back in time to learn how early settlers lived in our region 200 years ago. Topics include farm life skills like making textiles (flax to linen), plus dairy and wool culture, gardening and more.

Adults and teens can attend lectures and workshops on a variety of cultural and environmental topics throughout the year. Field trips take participants off-site to extend and deepen knowledge.

After school is out for the year, Summer Institute provides fun, educational activities for kids.

Youth programs include several options. An after-school watershed and stream study program for middle-schoolers called WaterStriders, meets monthly year-round.

A 90-minute program with either a cultural or environmental theme is available for groups (scouts, youth, camp, daycare, etc.) and families that arrange for special dates.

For more detailed information and a complete description of school programs and fees, contact The Institute by phone at (717) 762-0373 or by email at

Thank you, Institute, for the excellent programs you provide. The hands-on activities greatly benefit students’ ability to retain what they have learned.

Darla Shank,
elementary teacher