Naturalist Molly leads patrons on nature exploration 

Paddlefest at West Lake 

 Join a nature walk at West Lake

 

Monthly Activities Calendar

Field Trip Programs
The best resource to help plan a group trip to West Lake Park and the Anne Kolb Nature Center is the Division's Field Trip Guide. *Programs marked with asterisks meet specific curriculum objectives for the grades indicated.

*Mangrove Masterpiece (Kindergarten-Fifth Grade)
The plants and animals of the mangrove estuary will be explored in this three-part program. Students will board a U.S. Coast Guard-inspected, 14-passenger covered boat for a narrated tour of the tidal creeks and open waters of West Lake. (This is a Broward County School Board-approved water-related field trip). A guided tour of the nature center's exhibit hall uses video, interactive and static displays, aquariums, and hands-on demonstrations to introduce students to the mangrove's ecosystem. Grade-specific concepts and objectives will be highlighted during your choice of three naturalist-led trail tours.

Masterful Mangroves (Kindergarten-Third Grade)

  • Focuses on the importance of mangrove trees to wildlife and people. 
  • Three hours. 
  • 10-65 students.
  • Maximum 75 total participants, students, and chaperones.

Shells and Claws (Kindergarten-Third Grade)

  • Investigates the many mollusks and crustaceans thriving in mangrove habitats.
  • Three hours. 
  • 10-65 students. 
  • Maximum 75 total participants, students, and chaperones.

Mangrove Cafe (Fourth-Fifth Grades)

  • Explores species diversity, energy flow, and the connectedness among living things observed in the mangrove ecosystem. 
  • Three hours. 
  • 10-65 students. 
  • Maximum 75 total participants, students, and chaperones.

Mangrove Masterpiece (Sixth-12th Grades)
West Lake Park preserves a 1,500+ acre coastal mangrove estuary. This field trip provides your students with an opportunity to experience the physical conditions and biological resources of this ecosystem. Shifting tides and fluctuating salinities create a variable environment. Nutrient-rich water and protection from wave action and predators, however, create a haven for wildlife. A narrated boat tour, a guided exhibit hall tour, and a naturalist-led trail tour are components of this program. Salinity will be measured, turbidity gauged, and crab pots and minnow traps surveyed.
• Three hours.
• 10-90 students.
• Maximum 100 total participants, students, and chaperones.

Sun, Sand, Salt, and Surf (Second-12th Grades)
The fringe of land – where the ocean meets the shore – is a constantly changing environment. The beach and dunes respond daily to winds, waves, tides, currents, and storms. Only hardy plants and animals can endure the harsh combination of surf, sand, salt, and sun. Human actions also threaten the survival of our coastal flora and fauna. This field study will begin at Anne Kolb with an age-appropriate introduction. Your bus will then transport students to Hollywood North Beach Park, a half-mile away. There the students will experience the physical forces of this coastal environment. Note: Tide-dependent scheduling limits available dates.
• Three hours.
• 10-35 students.

Seek the Unique
*Plankton-a-Plenty (Kindergarten-12th Grade)
Discover some of West Lake's smallest flora and fauna: marine plankton, microscopic organisms crucial to the estuary and ocean's food chain. Collect plankton on a trail hike, learn about planktivores (plankton eaters), and marvel at strange creatures under the microscope. Includes a narrated boat tour and a guided exhibit hall tour.
• Three hours.
• 10-65 students.
• Maximum 75 total participants, students, and chaperones.

Tidal Field Study (Fourth-12th Grades)
Tides are the rhythm of life in a mangrove estuary. This program includes a narrated boat tour and a guided exhibit hall tour, as well as a participatory field study. Students will be involved in seining, collecting plankton, and sampling sediments. Come prepared for an exciting outdoor experience and wet, muddy conditions. Note: Tide-dependent scheduling limits available dates.
• Four hours.
• 10-35 students.

Educational Resources:

Activities

Aquarium: Behind the Scenes - Saturdays and Sundays at 2 p.m. $2 per person. Learn about the aquarium inhabitants and observe them feeding.

Friends of the Anne Kolb Nature Center (volunteer group) meets every first Thursday of the month at 7 p.m. (No meetings in July and August.)