Minnesota Master Naturalist

Master Naturalist Explorers

The goal of the Explorers program is to offer fun, outdoor, science-based educational opportunities for 4th and 5th grade (we are flexible with grade levels and may include 3 - 6 grades) students to learn about the ecology and natural history of their schoolyard, neighborhood, nearby natural areas, and the entire state.

The Explorers program connects trained Minnesota Master Naturalist volunteers with after-school programs around the state. The length of the seasonal units runs from 4 - 8 weeks (approximately one hour a week). The Explorers program has activities and educational materials adapted for the Fall, Winter and Spring seasons. The program incorporates nature journals and hands-on activities in the classroom and outdoors. The activities focus on learning about seasonal characteristics and changes (phenology) along with making observations outdoors related to weather, plants, animals and other natural features.

Approximate times of seasonal programs:

Fall programs (scheduled between September - December)
Winter programs (scheduled between January - March)Spring programs (scheduled between March - May)

The schedule and duration of the Explorers program is based on the after-school program and availability of the volunteers. The Minnesota Master Naturalist volunteers are asked to volunteer for the entire seasonal unit (4 - 8 weeks) and often volunteers are paired together at each site.

The Explorers program is funded by a grant from the Minnesota Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund.


If you are interested in learning more about the Explorers Program please contact Britt Forsberg forsb118@umn.edu or 612-626-2690.