Field Studies (K - 12)

For more than 30 years, the Elms Environmental Education Center has offered meaningful outdoor experiences for elementary through high school students in St. Mary's County, Maryland. Elms field studies are fully integrated into the classroom curriculum, and are aligned with both Maryland Environmental Literacy and Next Generation Science Standards.

During grade-specific field studies, students explore the diverse habitats of our county, including forests, wetlands, meadows, and beaches. Field Study programs are led by SMCPS Elms staff and occassionally, Elms Master Naturalist volunteers, at The Elms and at our partner site, Historic Sotterley Plantation.


  • Kindergarten What Living Things Need & Reusing Natural Resources, Spring @ Elms.

  • 1st Grade Structure & Function of Plants and Animals, Fall and Spring @ Elms.

  • 2nd Grade Habitats, Pollinators & Seed Spreaders, Fall and Spring @ Sotterley.

  • 3rd Grade Wetland Ecosystem Interactions, Winter @ Elms.

  • 4th Grade Chesapeake Bay Watershed & Structure and Function of Aquatic Organisms, Fall @ Elms.

  • 5th Grade Ecosystem Exploration by Canoe, Fall and Spring @ Sotterley.

Middle School

  • 7th Grade Biodiversity, Native Plants & Service Learning, Fall and Spring @ Elms.

High School

We can help you design a High School environmental education program for any content area, not just science!

Locations: The Elms (land-based) and Sotterley (land/canoe-based).

Contact to schedule.