at the Canyon Country Discovery Center
Good parents are good at tricking their kids. Her boy hates the taste of kale, so Mom sneaks some in a fruit smoothie. His girl won’t eat broccoli, so Dad pretends they’re tiny trees and tells her she’s a tree-eating giant. Some call it lying. We call it marketing.
Well if your kids think science is boring, let the Four Corners School's Canyon Country Discovery Center do a little marketing. (The kale comparison is imperfect, because those smoothies are masking the kale while the Four Corners School shows how delicious science actually is.) Utah’s ultimate outdoor/indoor educational center is in Monticello, in the southeast corner of the state near Canyonlands National Park, Lake Powell, Monument Valley, Hovenweep National Monument, Natural Bridges National Monument and La Sal Mountain Range.
You and your kids can take a hike, make clay jewelry, blow something up and fight invasive species on the Discovery Center’s surreptitiously edifying ed-ventures. It’s a school; it’s a museum; it’s an outdoor adventure center; it’s the tastiest biology-astronomy-conservation-geology-archaeology-service-paleontology smoothie your kids (and you) will ever drink.
Here are our five favorite educational diversions:
5. GUIDED BOTANICAL & WILDLIFE WALKS
• Plant walks
• Wildlife walks
• Biology outdoor adventures
4. CAMPUS PLAYGROUND
The campus is a natural playground, open to explorers.
• Wetlands & pond
• Outdoor musical instruments
• Boulders, hills & trails
3. DARK SKIES STARRY VIEWS
• Stars & S’mores
• Cosmic time travel
2. NATURAL HISTORY & ARCHEOLOGY TOURS
Guided day trips in Canyonlands, Cedar Mesa & the San Juan River
• Butler Wash Ruins
• Mule Canyon to Wall Ruin
• House on Fire Ruins
1. HANDS-ON EXHIBITS & CLASSES
• Bouldering wall
• Wind tunnels
• Mano and Matates
• Clay jewelry
• Intro to topographical maps
• 3D sandbox
MUCH, MUCH MORE FOR KIDS & ADULTS
- Student Learning: Kindergarten to college students can participate in interactive, inquiry-based and informal education while on a field trip, research expedition or internship with a Discovery Center program.
- Young Adult Development: Young adults can engage in service-learning projects or join the Canyon Country Youth Corps--a workforce development program that completes conservation projects on public lands.
- Lifelong Learning: Visitors of all ages can experience a campus educational activity, night sky program or an adventure trip throughout the canyons and riverways of the Colorado Plateau.
- Teacher Continuing Education: All grade level teachers can participate in interactive, science-based professional development at the Discovery Center or through outreach programs that support K-8th grade teachers throughout the Colorado Plateau.