Children's Programs at the Arboretum

Children's Activities

The Friends of The Frelinghuysen Arboretum have regular educational programs for children from toddlers through junior high school.

Activities are grouped by age:
Sprouts+Seedlings_winter-th

Sprouts & Seedlings

Plant the seeds of love for nature in our new preschool programs! Each session features a different theme and includes an outdoor exploration of the Arboretum. Dress for the weather.

In Sprouts, children ages 2-3 and their adult caregivers will explore natural topics through songs, stories, movement, games, and art activities, while in Seedlings preschoolers ages 4-5 will discover the wonders of nature through experiments and projects, while building literacy and math skills.

Click the image at right for more information. Register for programs below.

“Branching Out!” – Forty-Six Seasons and still going!

“Branching Out!”, the hands-on, gardening program where young people are allowed – no, encouraged – to play in the dirt, will begin taking reservations in January. 2018 will be the 46th gardening season for this hands-on, educational program which will run Saturdays in the spring and two days a week in the summer depending on age level. Gardeners may attend spring, summer or both but no matter what, they will learn that with a little work and a lot of patience, the food you grow yourself is usually the best! Time to get dirty and get digging.

Register by downloading the flyer at right. For more information or to request a brochure be mailed to you, call Gwen Montgomery at 973-631-5004 or email gmontgomery@morrisparks.net.

Homeschoolflyer-Winter-th

Home Schooling

Add plant science into your home-school curriculum! These classes offer hands-on experiences that address NJ Science Standards in a unique and engaging educational setting.

Click on the flyer at right for more information.

Seasonal Scavenger Hunts

Grab a camera or phone and stop by the Haggerty Education Center to launch a nature photo scavenger hunt. These change with the season and get a new theme every month. Visitors can pick up the list, head outside and shoot away. Take a picture of every item, return to the Education Center and pick up your prize.

Scavenger lists will change every month. Look in the events listing, below, for information about the current scavenger hunt. What a great way to explore the arboretum and to get the family outside in the fresh air.

FIELD TRIPS FOR SCHOOLS & SCOUTS

For information about booking field trips for schools and scout troops at The Frelinghuysen Arboretum, please contact the Horticultural Program Specialist at 973-631-5004.

ATTENTION SCOUT LEADERS

Girl Scouts

Schedule a workshop to earn a badge or patch or work on an older girls’ project at The Frelinghuysen Arboretum. Available workshops can help scouts earn these badges:

  • Brownies -- Hiker or Senses
  • Junior -- Flowers or Gardener
  • or
  • Cadettes -- Trees

Or, Daisies can earn Watering Can patch for It's Your World -- Change It! Journey.

The staff will work with leaders to design a workshop that meets the needs of a troop. Explore the gardens, take a tour and spend some time outside. All workshop participants will plant something to take home.

Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts

Many Cub Scout Achievements and Awards can be earned in a workshop lead by staff at The Frelinghuysen Arboretum. Learn what’s a native plant and what’s not. Search for habitat, exotic plants, or big trees. All workshop participants will take home a plant to care for.

For information on any scout programs at The Frelinghuysen Arboretum call (973) 631-5004.

All Children's Programs:

Click here to get printable registration forms:
Fall 2018, Winter 2019

Cancellations
Click here for cancellation policy

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Mon Oct 1, 2018

See dates & Times is body

Scavenger Hunts!

Find each item on the list and win a prize!

  • October 1 - 20 – Theme: Orange You Glad
  • October 20 - November 18 – Theme: Scarecrows
  • December 26 - 31 – Theme: Walking in a Winter Wonderland

Time: Families welcome to participate any time between 9:00 am and 3:30 pm

Cost: $10 per family at the door

Cost: See above

Location: Haggerty Center

Sponsor: MCPC

Thu Dec 20, 2018

4:30p - 5:30p

Always Evergreen

Grades 1 – 5

Using a variety of fresh-cut greens and fresh flowers, young people will create a seasonal centerpiece perfect for the holiday table. All supplies provided.

Register by December 13

Cost: $10 members / $15 non-members.

The Friends can no longer offer on-line registration for Morris County Park Commission programs. Please call 973.326.7601 for information and registration.

Cost: See above

Location: Haggerty Center

Sponsor: MCPC

Sat Jan 5, 2019

Sat & Sun
in Jan, Feb & Mar

Winter Weekend Photo Scavenger Hunt

Grab a camera or phone and stop by the Haggerty Education Center for a nature photo scavenger hunt. Visitors can pick up the list, head outside, and shoot away. Take a picture of every item, return to the Education Center and pick up your prize.

Scavenger lists change every month:

  • January’s theme is “Can You Believe That?,”
  • February’s is “Love Is In the Air,” and
  • the theme for March is “Top of the Morning.”

What a great way to explore the arboretum and to get the family outside in the fresh air.

Date: Saturdays & Sundays in January, February, and March

Families welcome to participate any time between 9:00 am and 3:30 pm

Cost: $10 per family at the door

Cost: See above

Location: Haggerty Center

Sponsor: FOFA

Sun Jan 6, 2019

1:00p - 4:00p

Games and Gardens: Family Garden Game Days

Kick that cabin fever and get out of the house and into the garden this winter with Family Garden Games. Play Garden-opoly, Plant Scrabble and join in the garden Bingo challenge and win prizes. Even try your hand at life-sized chess and dig into popcorn and other seasonal snacks.

Dates: Sundays, January 6 and February 10

Cost: $3 per person

The Friends can no longer offer on-line registration for Morris County Park Commission programs. Please call 973.326.7601 for information and registration.

Cost: See above

Location: Haggerty Center

Sponsor: FOFA

Thu Jan 10, 2019

& Thursdays 2/7 aand 3/7
4:00p - 5:00p

Arboretum Artists

Ages 8-12

Arboretum Artists is a series designed for creative young people with an interest in both art and nature. Each class will focus on using a different artistic medium to capture the beauty of the natural world. Budding artists will explore new techniques and bring home one-of-a-kind masterpieces!

  • Thursday, January 10 – Snowy Silhouettes. Capture the beauty of leafless trees using a fun technique!
  • Thursday, February 7 – Miniature Garden. Sculpt a succulent garden out of clay; no green thumb required to keep these plants looking pretty!
  • Thursday, March 7 – Spring String. Use colorful yarn to create a cheerful floral masterpiece.

Dates: Select Thursdays Time: 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm Cost: $10 per child per class Preregistration recommended; walk-ins welcome.

The Friends can no longer offer on-line registration for Morris County Park Commission programs. Please call 973.326.7601 for information and registration.

Cost: See above

Location: Haggerty Center

Sponsor: FOFA

Wed Jan 16, 2019

See body

Sprouts - Animal, Vegetable, Mineral

Young scientists will decide what is alive and what is not and learn how they have a lot in common with plants – another living thing.

Plant the seeds for a love of nature in Sprouts. In these programs, preschoolers ages 2-4 and their adult caregivers will discover the wonders of nature. Each session features a different theme based on what is growing in the gardens. Each session includes a story time, a hands-on activity based on the theme, and an outdoor exploration of the arboretum. Dress for the weather!

Pre-registration preferred; walk-ins welcome.

The Friends can no longer offer on-line registration for Morris County Park Commission programs. Please call 973.326.7601 for information and registration.

Times: 10:00 am – 11:00 am OR 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm

Cost: $5 per child

Location: Haggerty Center

Sponsor: FOFA

Wed Jan 30, 2019

See body

Sprouts - Invent a Plant

Learn about the basic parts of plants in all their shapes and sizes. Take a walk to find the parts of plants all over the Arboretum. Then, create a silly plant to take home..

Plant the seeds for a love of nature in Sprouts. In these programs, preschoolers ages 2-4 and their adult caregivers will discover the wonders of nature. Each session features a different theme based on what is growing in the gardens. Each session includes a story time, a hands-on activity based on the theme, and an outdoor exploration of the arboretum. Dress for the weather!

Pre-registration preferred; walk-ins welcome.

The Friends can no longer offer on-line registration for Morris County Park Commission programs. Please call 973.326.7601 for information and registration.

Times: 10:00 am – 11:00 am OR 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm

Cost: $5 per child

Location: Haggerty Center

Sponsor: FOFA

Sun Feb 10, 2019

1:00p - 4:00p

Games and Gardens: Family Garden Game Days

Kick that cabin fever and get out of the house and into the garden this winter with Family Garden Games. Play Garden-opoly, Plant Scrabble and join in the garden Bingo challenge and win prizes. Even try your hand at life-sized chess and dig into popcorn and other seasonal snacks.

Dates: Sundays, January 6 and February 10

Cost: $3 per person

The Friends can no longer offer on-line registration for Morris County Park Commission programs. Please call 973.326.7601 for information and registration.

Cost: See above

Location: Haggerty Center

Sponsor: FOFA

Wed Feb 13, 2019

See body

Sprouts - Plants In All Kinds of Places

Plants can grow in all sorts of crazy places. Discover some at the Arboretum and learn what all plants need to grow, no matter where they call home.

Plant the seeds for a love of nature in Sprouts. In these programs, preschoolers ages 2-4 and their adult caregivers will discover the wonders of nature. Each session features a different theme based on what is growing in the gardens. Each session includes a story time, a hands-on activity based on the theme, and an outdoor exploration of the arboretum. Dress for the weather!

Pre-registration preferred; walk-ins welcome.

The Friends can no longer offer on-line registration for Morris County Park Commission programs. Please call 973.326.7601 for information and registration.

Times: 10:00 am – 11:00 am OR 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm

Cost: $5 per child

Location: Haggerty Center

Sponsor: FOFA

Thu Feb 14, 2019

4:00p - 5:00p

Be Mine, Valentine: Create a Succulent Garden

Ages 6 - 10

Young designers plant a Valentine garden using succulents and other small plants to create a perfect Valentine’s Day gift for someone special.

Cost: $15 per child

The Friends can no longer offer on-line registration for Morris County Park Commission programs. Please call 973.326.7601 for information and registration.

Cost: See above

Location: Haggerty Center

Sponsor: FOFA

Mon Feb 18, 2019

9:00a - 2:00p

Tree Detectives

Grades 1-4

On this day off from school, find out about some of the oldest living things in New Jersey – our native trees. Spend time outside discovering just how great these elders of the natural world are. Plant some tree seeds, create tree-related art, learn how many things we eat come from trees, and cook a tree snack.

Cost $35 per child

The Friends can no longer offer on-line registration for Morris County Park Commission programs. Please call 973.326.7601 for information and registration.

Cost: See above

Location: Haggerty Center

Sponsor: FOFA

Wed Feb 27, 2019

See body

Sprouts - Big and Small

Some plants are big and others are small. Why do they grow into the sizes they do? Search for the biggest and the smallest outside and inside.

Plant the seeds for a love of nature in Sprouts. In these programs, preschoolers ages 2-4 and their adult caregivers will discover the wonders of nature. Each session features a different theme based on what is growing in the gardens. Each session includes a story time, a hands-on activity based on the theme, and an outdoor exploration of the arboretum. Dress for the weather!

Pre-registration preferred; walk-ins welcome.

The Friends can no longer offer on-line registration for Morris County Park Commission programs. Please call 973.326.7601 for information and registration.

Times: 10:00 am – 11:00 am OR 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm

Cost: $5 per child

Location: Haggerty Center

Sponsor: FOFA

Sat Mar 9, 2019

1:00p - 3:00p
SNOW DATE: Sun Mar 10

Matilda’s Tea: Shall We Dance?

Ages 5 & up with an adult

The dawn of the 20th Century gave rise to the ballroom dance craze so that every young girl and boy learned to dance the waltz and the foxtrot gracefully. Make your dance card and join dance instructor Jamie DiMare who leads everyone in the basics of ballroom dance. Wear your best dancing slippers and be prepared to fill your dance card and hit the dance floor to learn a few dances that a young Matilda Frelinghuysen would have known. Then enjoy tea, pastries, and tea sandwiches, both sweet and savory.

Cost: $25 per person

The Friends can no longer offer on-line registration for Morris County Park Commission programs. Please call 973.326.7601 for information and registration.

Cost: See above

Location: Haggerty Center

Sponsor: FOFA

Wed Mar 13, 2019

See body

Sprouts - What Smells?

Some plants smell good and other plants smell awful! Bring your nose along for a smell safari!

Plant the seeds for a love of nature in Sprouts. In these programs, preschoolers ages 2-4 and their adult caregivers will discover the wonders of nature. Each session features a different theme based on what is growing in the gardens. Each session includes a story time, a hands-on activity based on the theme, and an outdoor exploration of the arboretum. Dress for the weather!

Pre-registration preferred; walk-ins welcome.

The Friends can no longer offer on-line registration for Morris County Park Commission programs. Please call 973.326.7601 for information and registration.

Times: 10:00 am – 11:00 am OR 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm

Cost: $5 per child

Location: Haggerty Center

Sponsor: FOFA

Wed Mar 27, 2019

See body

Sprouts - Here Comes The Sun

Hooray! Spring is here. Look around outside for signs of spring and plant a few early flowers to greet the sun.

Plant the seeds for a love of nature in Sprouts. In these programs, preschoolers ages 2-4 and their adult caregivers will discover the wonders of nature. Each session features a different theme based on what is growing in the gardens. Each session includes a story time, a hands-on activity based on the theme, and an outdoor exploration of the arboretum. Dress for the weather!

Pre-registration preferred; walk-ins welcome.

The Friends can no longer offer on-line registration for Morris County Park Commission programs. Please call 973.326.7601 for information and registration.

Times: 10:00 am – 11:00 am OR 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm

Cost: $5 per child

Location: Haggerty Center

Sponsor: FOFA