Spruce Run Environmental Center

Second Grading Period 2020-2021


Family Focused Field Trips sponsored by TNC will take place beginning the first Saturday of every month from February 2021 through November 2021. Each month, Angie Burke, Conservation & Volunteer Coordinator from TNC will introduce the monthly topic, then together participants will watch the virtual field trip. At the conclusion of the virtual field trip Angie will then host an after field trip review/discussion session. Please email Angie Burke at angela.burke@tnc.org for the zoom link.

See dates, times and topics below:

February 6th, 2021 @10 am

Changing Climate, Changing Cities: Virtual Field Trip from Phoenix to Shenzhen. In this Virtual Field Trip, learn about heat islands in Phoenix, Arizona and the connection between water and climate in Shenzhen, China. You’ll also hear about why some communities are at greater risk than others and discover how everyone can be a part of the solution.

March 6th, 2021@ 10 am

Powering the Planet: Renewable Energy. Join scientist Alex Wegmann as we embark on a Virtual Field Trip to explore a compelling question: How can we get the energy we need without harming nature?

April 3rd, 2021 @ 10 am

Wild Biomes: America's Rainforests & Deserts. Two wildly different ecosystems, both dependent on the same precious resource: Water. On this virtual field trip, we’ll travel to Seattle and Arizona.

May 1st, 2021@10 am

View from a Canoe. Can you imagine a place with 100 million acres of forest and 30,000 miles of coastline? It exists. The Emerald Edge is home to the largest intact coastal temperate rainforest.

June 5th, 2021@ 10 am

China's Great Forests. Join our expert scientist Yue Wang, a conservation planning officer for The Nature Conservancy, on a virtual field trip across the world to two stunning provinces in China.

July 3rd, 2021 @ 10 am

The Secret Life of Corals. Learn how fragile reefs are being damaged by human activity and climate change, and how scientists are developing ways to restore corals.

August 7th, 2021 @ 10 am

The Coral Reefs of Palau. Join our expert scientist, marine biologist Stephanie Wear, on a virtual field trip to the coral reefs of Palau where you'll explore amazing underwater cities.

September 4th, 2021 @10 am

The Symphony of the Rainforest. On this journey, we’ll learn how experts are using cutting-edge science to find out how healthy the rainforest is—and to discover where it needs some help!

October 2nd, 2021 @ 10 am

Journey of Water: Colombia’s Páramo. In this virtual field trip, we will explore the magical páramo ecosystem and the stunning mountain landscapes found just beyond the capital city of Bogotá.

November 6th, 2021@ 10 am

Peru: A Coastal Ecosystem. Join fisheries scientist Matias Caillaux to explore the Humboldt Current Ecosystem off the coast of Peru while learning about the area’s amazing diversity and productivity.


Teachers come out to SpruceRun and take your students on a virtual "Walk About". You can ZOOM on location with your students and show them real world examples of plants, animals, erosion, soil, rocks, chemical and physical changes and more. Contact Geri Granger to set up your date and time for your "Walk About". To gain a better understanding of the concept of a virtual "Walk About" read the article from the CCS home page entitled, Parsons ES Students Experience Virtual Field Trip To Spruce Run.


Columbus Zoo Virtual Scholarships Available

Connect LIVE with Columbus Zoo educators via Zoom as they highlight habitats, animals, and science concepts from all regions of the globe. Topics address Ohio Learning Standards and are designed to allow students an opportunity to visit the Zoo without ever leaving your classroom!

Programming is $100 BUT if you contact Brandon Good at the zoo, you can apply for a programming scholarship which would reduce the cost of programming to $25. Brandon can be emailed at brandon.good@columbuszoo.org Apply soon as scholarships are limited!

Go to https://reservations.columbuszoo.org/Info.aspx?EventID=5159 to make reservations for zoo programming.

Grades K-3

5 SENSES - See who has the best eyes, ears, nose, mouth, and sense of touch on this trip around the Zoo!

BACKYARD DETECTIVES - Discover what you can do to make your backyard habitat an inviting spot for common backyard animals!

SHAKE, RATTLE, ROLL - Swim, hop, fly or slither over for some movement fun!

ANIMAL ENRICHMENT - Animals like to play with toys, too! Come along as we learn about how we keep animals active at the Zoo.

Grades 3-6

ARCTIC ADVENTURE - Roll around on our virtual tundra buggy as we explore the Arctic and all its animals.

FOOD CHAINS - Learn about animal diets and how food chains play an important role in our ecosystem!

ANIMAL ADAPTATIONS - Horns, Claws, Camouflage and more! Let’s uncover different types of adaptations that animals use to survive in their habitats!

OCEAN CLASSIFICATION - What do sharks, fish, turtles and manatees have in common? Learn how ocean animals are alike and different!

View links below for sample programs!

Backyard Detectives: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xmkKccnz4dU&feature=youtu.be

Food Chains: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XO-bz_AOm4Y&feature=youtu.be

Animal Adaptations: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Guk8yPZQhE&feature=youtu.be

Looking for more opportunities?

The Wilds is also connecting live with a new outreach program.

Virtual Career Program (Grades 6-12)

Follow along with some of our staff members as they go about their day-to-day routine and describe all of the responsibilities, duties, and neat conservation efforts they participate in each and every day! Staff from our Animal Management, Animal Health, Ecology, and Education teams will all be represented, with hopes of showing everyone what a great place The Wilds is to work!

Go to https://thewilds.columbuszoo.org/home/discover/learn-at-the-wilds/virtual-career-program to make reservations for The Wilds programming.

Columbus Zoo Eco Summit


The Teen Eco Summit is going VIRTUAL this year and we want CCS high school to attend! On January 13, the Zoo will hold a kickoff Summit featuring guest speakers and workshops designed to give your HS students the tools they need to be sustainability leaders at your school. Past HS teams have designed and implemented projects such as pollinator gardens, water bottle refill stations and much more. Join us to learn how you can get your students involved in this great opportunity!

Application: https://www.columbuszoo.org/home/discover/learn-at-the-zoo/teen-eco-summit

Video of Eco Summit: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=1473823889446714

On Demand Professional Development

On November 3rd Spruce Run will be participating in an on demand professional development opportunity for elementary teachers. You will not be able to open these links until the morning of November 3rd.

PD Title: Ideas for the Virtual Science Classroom

Please make a copy of the facilitation guide, so you can follow along with the video.


Link to video. https://drive.google.com/file/d/1EbsYvYsWdpEoa7Rp0YGXTe1EQwNqK3e5/view?usp=sharing

Ranger Granger Resources

Teacher "Walk and Talk"

Providing that Covid restrictions are lifted, Spruce Run will be hosting five teacher "Walk and Talks" in 2021. These "Walk and Talks" will happen once a month, for two hours. Time of program and program descriptions, will be coming soon.

January 30th: Track, Scat and Fur

February 27th: Night Sky

March: Night of the Salamanders (Date to be announced as it depends on the temperature/weather conditions)

April 24th: Collecting Real Time Data Using iNaturalist app and BioBlitz

May 29th: Honing Observation Skills through Nature Photography

Book Your Field Trip Now

Plan ahead and keep your fingers crossed that school and field trips to Spruce Run will open up beginning in January. The calendar is filling up quickly so make your reservations now!

Open Office Hours

The purpose of Open Office Hours is for teachers to receive support regarding content and resources. The curriculum coordinator will be available via Zoom to answer questions. You do not need to stay the entire time. You can join the session using the Zoom link, ask your question, and leave or remain to collaborate with other teachers. Throughout the year, the office hours may focus on a specific resource or topic question instead of just open for general content questions. Please check newsletter each week for office hour updates/topics/cancellations.

Each Thursday night I will host open office hours from 3:30p.m-5:30p.m.

Topic: Spruce Run Resources/field trips

Join Zoom Meeting


Meeting ID: 396 325 2269

Passcode: 3SsAit

Volunteers Needed

Become a volunteer. All you need is an enthusiasm for nature and the great outdoors, a willingness to learn and a desire to share with others! Volunteer hours are flexible and will depend on your chosen job area(s). No previous training is needed: training programs will be provided. Currently, we need volunteers in the following areas:

Office: answer telephone, filing, organizing supplies for school group activities

Horticulture: working in the greenhouse, raised bed, landscaping maintenance

Naturalist: sharing your personal "Nature Hobby" such as birding or rock collecting with student groups

Maintenance: general upkeep of the buildings and grounds

Scout Specialist: working with troops, or individual scouts on badges, scouting projects and volunteering opportunities at Spruce Run

Office of Teaching and Learning

Office of Teaching and Learning

3700 S. High St.

Columbus, Ohio 43207

Office number 614.365.5727

Alyse Clark, Executive Director, Teaching and Learning

Kenny Lee, Director of Secondary Curriculum

Katy Myers, Secondary Curriculum Supervisor

Heather Allen, K-5 Coordinator, hallen704@columbus.k12.oh.us

Jennifer Nord, 6-12 Science Coordinator, jnord5257@columbus.k12.oh.us

Geri Granger, K-12 Spruce Run Coordinator, ggranger9556@columbus.k12.oh.us