The Perot Museum’s Junior Master Naturalist outdoor education program is a unique well rounded curriculum. It is also one of the first of its kind in the United States. Perot Museum staff educator Jessica Crowley, said “From day one, students participating in our kick-off season of the Junior Master Naturalist program have been super excited and engaged in the content.” The program is a joint activity of Perot and highly trained North Texas Master Naturalists volunteers.
Nineteen students grades 4-6 gather one Thursday night a month in the Perot learning lab to study Texas geologic history, aquatic science, plant biology, and the biology and identification of mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles and invertebrates. They then follow-up each lab with a field trip on specified Saturdays to local Dallas area nature parks to explore what they have learned in the labs. Everything from collecting fossils, setting up game cameras, scat identification, planting seed balls to restore a Blackland Prairie and learning how to track animals in the field. Both the labs and the field trips are extraordinarily well organized with expert educators who are adept a making learning fascinating. The pilot program began September 2015 and will conclude June 2016, sign-up will begin July 2016 for the 2016/2017 year.