For Educators

GP by Lionel

Green Point Environmental Learning Center during Fall 

Lionel D. Grant/USFWS

Environmental Education 


Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge offers a variety of environmental education programs for all ages of students! Download a copy of the Educator's Guide or see below for more information.

Green Point Environmental Learning Center   


 3010 Maple Street 
Saginaw, MI 48602 

Phone: 989-759-1669   

Hours (current hours): 

Monday- Friday         10:00am-4:00pm
Saturday - Sunday     Closed

Green Point ELC sits on 76-acres and includes bottomland hardwood forest, wetland, field and riverine habitats plus a lot more!

The Center Itself

Students experience the outdoors just by walking up to the building from the parking lot! Once inside, they will find displays, aquariums, working bee hive, wildlife observation area, classroom space for up to 60 people, and accessible restrooms.

On-Site Environmental Education Programs:

Refuge staff at Green Point work with school and other organized groups throughout the year providing quality environmental education programs. Each program lasts about 1.5 hours and includes both indoor and outdoor activities. Call Green Point at (989) 759-1669 to schedule a program. Staff prefers working with one classroom or about 25 students at a time, but other arrangements can be made if necessary.

(F=Fall, W=Winter, Sp=Spring, Su=Summer)

Home is Where the Habitat Is! - Compare and contrast Green Point's habitats and the wildlife that live in each. Describe basic life requirements of all living things. PreK-3 (F, W, Sp, Su)

Tracks and Traces – Classify animals by the traces they leave behind. Discover animal adaptations that allow for survival. Practice different animal gaits. PreK-3 (F, W, Sp, Su)

Sensing the Seasons – Compare the seasons at Green Point. See what the plants and animals do to survive. PreK-3 (F, W, Sp, Su)

Bird Eye-Q – How do biologists identify one bird from the next? Practice using bird field guides and binoculars to identify local species. Gr. 1-6 (F, W, Sp, Su)

Water Wonderland – Learn the steps of the water cycle and properties of water. Examine how humans interact with the cycle. Gr. 3-6 (F, W, Sp, Su)

Pond Safari – Classify the layers of a pond and the organisms found in each. Use pond nets, hand lenses, microscopes and field guides to study aquatic life. Gr. 3-6 (F, Sp, Su)

Migration Mapping – Become biologists and study bird migration in North America. Students practice their geography as they use a large, floor map to study bird ranges, flyways and various impacts on bird habitat. Socks required! Gr. 3-6 (F, W, Sp, Su)

Insect Safari – What is a bug? Identify insect anatomy and function. Collect and classify grassland insects using nets and field guides. Gr 1-6 (F, Sp, Su)

Web of Life – Students learn about interrelationships of living organisms by becoming a wetland-based food web, including the transfer of energy. Discuss human impacts and other factors that can affect it. Gr. 3-6 (F, W, Sp, Su)

What’s a Tree? – Learn what's under the bark and how it functions. Classify and identify local trees. Become a functioning human "tree." Gr. 3-6 (F, W, Sp, Su)

A self-guided program for the more adventurous educators. These binders include an Activity Guide with classroom and on-site activities and reproducible data sheets. You pick it up at Green Point two weeks before your visit.

Animals Tracks Trekking Pack - Grades 4 – 7*

Bird Migration Trekking Pack - Grades 4 – 7*

Pond Life Trekking Pack - Grades 4 – 7*

* All programs can be adapted to other grade levels.


Green Point has about 2.5 miles of trails that wind through the forest, grassland and by wetlands and the Tittabawassee River. A great way to study different habitats! Trails surfaces range from woodchips to mowed grass to rustic.

In Classroom Programs :

We bring our activities to you! These programs are 1 – 2 hours in length. Call Green Point at (989) 759-1669 to schedule a visit.

Careers in the Fish and Wildlife Service – Through an open discussion with a Refuge staff person, your students will learn what it takes to be a part of the Fish and Wildlife team. Grades 6 – 12.

"Virtual" Refuge Tour - Your students will travel to Shiawassee NWR to see and feel the wildlife and habitats found there via a Power Point program and a variety of wildlife items. Good for all grades.

Endangered Species – Students will see a variety of endangered species and illegal wildlife trade items. Good for all grades.

Birds of Prey – Discover the world of hawks, eagles and owls. “Soar” with a life-size pair of Bald Eagle wings. Good for all grades.

Let’s Build a Refuge! – Students will learn what it takes to build a National Wildlife Refuge. Grades 4 – 6.

Everything you need to enhance your in-school curriculum. You can borrow the following trunks for two weeks to use in your classroom. Call Green Point to schedule a pick up and drop off date and time. The trunks can be used for any grade level.

Experience the Great Lakes – This trunk covers Great Lakes food webs, aquatic invasive species, water, and fish. Specific benchmarks and standards that are explicitly coverd by each lesson are documented for two age leves: elementary (4-6 grade) and middle (6-8 grade) and the state and national standards/benchmarks. Posters, DVD's, specimens, and additional information about non-aquatic invasive species are also included.

Cargo for Conservation – Learn about species affected by illegal trade. The trunk includes informational materials for the teacher and advanced students, activity ideas, reproducible coloring pages with student information, lesson plans, pamphlets, posters and wildlife parts and products actually confiscated at and within U.S. borders. A good kick-off for studying endangered species!

Michigan Natural Resources – This trunk is a collection of materials covering forest, soil and wildlife. It includes informational materials, activity ideas, posters, track casting materials, forestry measuring devices and much more.

Prairie Discovery – This trunk was designed with subject-oriented learning materials and educational tools to be used by groups of any age. The Activity Guide contains nine units that concentrate on specific aspects of the prairie ecosystem. A variety of educational videos, books, posters and even a buffalo costume are included!

Shorebirds – Learn about the natural history of shorebirds. This integrated teaching unit contains an activity guide, posters, maps, puppets, binoculars, and a variety of books.

Songbirds – Learn about the natural history of migratory songbirds, their other life in Latin America and the increasing problems birds face in their homes. This integrated teaching unit contains an activity guide, posters, maps, puppets, and a variety of books.

Wetlands Discovery – This trunk helps your students learn about wetlands. It includes background information, videos, posters, books, curricula, activity guide, artifacts, audio cassettes, puppets, props and more!

Wolf Wonders – Explore the world of one of America’s endangered species, the wolf. The trunk includes activity ideas, books, a video, a wolf skull and a wolf skin.

Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge:

The refuge itself makes a wonderful outdoor classroom! Visit the trails with your group during daylight hours, any day of the week (Note that trails are closed periodically during hunting season). Refuge staff MAY be able to provide your group with a guided tour of the refuge. Please call (989) 759-1669 to arrange this. 

Michigan Junior Duck Stamp Program:


The Federal Junior Duck Stamp Conservation and Design Program uses art and science to teach students in grades K through 12 the value of wetlands and the waterfowl that use them. Through educational curriculum, students are exposed to a variety of topics covering waterfowl, habitat and ways to conserve both. By entering the Junior Duck Stamp art contest, students can show off what they've learned visually.  Learn More.

For more information about educational programs contact:
Green Point Environmental Learning Center
3010 Maple Street
Saginaw, MI 48602

 Phone: 989-759-1669
or e-mail us at