High school students need exposure to real world applications for the concepts and skills they are learning in order to process and use the information presented. This article describes three of the best places in southeast Alabama for high school field trips in science.
Dothan Botanical Gardens
Overview: The gardens consist of 50 acres of cultivated gardens, nature trails, and undeveloped wooded landscape. The historical Wilson Windmill, used as a landmark or reference mark in the area, has been moved to the gardens and restored to working condition. Picnic tables are available.
Possible Courses: Biology, Botany, Environmental Science, Agriculture
Guided or Self-Guided Tours: Guided tours need to be arranged in advance. Self-guided tours include the 15 various gardens including rose, herb, demonstration, butterfly, azalea, camellia, and more. Gardens open from 7:00 a. m. to 7 p. m. Daylight Savings Time and 7:00 a. m. to 5:00 p. m. during the winter.
Location: 5130 Headland Avenue, just off U S Highway 431
Costs: Free but donations are appreciated.
Web Link: http://www.dabg.com/
Army Aviation Museum
Overview: Houses a collection of helicopters, airplanes, and other displays that trace the development and usage of aviation by the army. Displays include Vietnam Memorial, Army Aviation Hall of Fame, Wright Brothers Model B military flyer, planes and helicopters from World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, and Operation Desert Storm.
Possible Courses: Physical Science, Physics, Aviation
Guided or Self-Guided Tours: Open Monday – Saturday from 9 a. m. to 4 p. m.
Guided tours need to be arranged ahead of time by the teacher.
Location: Fort Rucker, Alabama between the cities of Enterprise, Daleville, and
Ozark and is easily accessible from U S Highways 84 and 231.
Contact: U. S. Army Aviation Museum Foundation, Inc. at 334-596-2508
Web Link: U.S. Army Aviation Museum | preserving the Past… for the Future
Eufaula National Wildlife Refuge
Overview: Area is home to a large variety of birds, mammals, reptiles, and insects. Different habitats are represented such as lake, wetlands, open fields, and woodlands. Come prepare to hike with water, snacks, insect repellent, and sunscreen. Contains a 7-mile auto route, two viewing towers, and a walking trail.
Possible Courses: Biology, Zoology, Ecology, Environmental Science
Guided or Self-Guided Tours: Programs can be arranged for school groups ahead of time.
Location: 367 Highway 165 in Eufaula, AL
Web Link: Eufaula National Wildlife Refuge