Conservancy Kids

We bring the Sonoran Desert to you!

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Welcome to Conservancy Kids!

We are so excited to have you with us on this virtual journey of inquiry and place-based learning! Right now we may be social distancing, but we're all connected by the awesomeness of science. We're junior scientists, exploring the natural world, asking questions, and making discoveries. Join us for an adventure that will take you outdoors, around the house, and into the incredible Sonoran Desert. Welcome to Conservancy Kids! We're excited to see you!

Geology Rocks! (Part 2)

We love geology and the amazing rocks we can find right outside! Learn more about the amazing geology of the Sonoran Desert with Luke.

Luke Digs Quartz

You may not realize it, but quartz is important to our everyday lives! As one of the most abundant minerals on the earth's surface, it is contained in all three types of bedrock (metamorphic, igneous, and sedimentary). Because quartz is a very hard mineral, builders use it when constructing almost all buildings for added strength. Quartz is also piezoelectric, which means it can generate an electric charge when placed under physical pressure. That' why quartz is used in radios, microphones, timers, watches and more. Quartz is all around you!
Luke Finds Quartz

Luke Loves Lava Rock

Did you know that Arizona used to have active volcanoes?! Things seem calm now, but thousands of years ago, volcanic activity was shaping the land. Sunset Crater near Flagstaff, AZ shows the remaining evidence of a volcanic eruption just 1,000 years ago. Even further south in the Sonoran Desert, you can discover cool geology that tells us about the volcanic activity that helped shape the region.

Luke Likes Lava Rock


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Contact us

We're socially distanced but still connected by the awesomeness of science!

Have questions about the Sonoran Desert? Want a lesson on a specific topic? Email us at

You can also connect by tagging us on Facebook or Instagram @mcdowellsonoranconservancy. We would love to see your science notebooks or learn what teaching resources you're using.

Luke Challis, Program Manager

Luke loves science and being out and about in nature! He studies a lot about biology, ways of thinking, and philosophy. Luke also loves to teach and encourage kids and adults to always keep learning.

Nicole Kallman, Education Coordinator

Nicole loves science and exploration. In college, she studied physics and biology. Now, she shares her excitement about science with others, encouraging everyone to follow in the footsteps of Miss Frizzle: "take chances, make mistakes, and get messy!"