Youth Classes

Youth Classes

Reading Wednesday

  • Every Wednesday, 10 am
  • Ongoing Reading Wednesdays
  • South Lobby Visitor Center
  • FREE, Best for ages 2 to 5

Books are nature-themed and selected based on the season. We’ll start with an interactive song and story, then finish with a craft. Last Wednesdays of the month are with the Downtown Library.

Little Saplings – Fall Session

  • Every other Tuesday, at 10 am
  • November 19 and December 3
  • Member $3; Nonmember $4
  • Best for ages 2 to 5
  • REGISTER HERE

Join us for an hour of songs, games, and interactive nature fun. Toddlers (and parents!) will get to learn about the exciting world of gardens in an engaging and educational way. Each week features a new theme with corresponding activities and learning opportunities. Every Little Saplings event begins with a song, ends with a sensory bin, and includes a hands-on craft.

Painting Pots and Planting Herbs

  • Friday, November 22, 6-7:30 pm
  • Member $15; Nonmember $17
  • Best for ages 6 to 12
  • REGISTER HERE

Families will learn about the indoor herbs to grow during the chilly months to use in tasty holiday meals. Each child will paint an 8” terra cotta pot and plant an herb of their choice to take home. Learn how to take care of our new herb plant and talk about some tasty, healthy ways to use our herbs as they grow.

Family Workshop: Insect Hotels

  • Saturday, November 23, 10-11 am
  • Olivia Dias, Children’s Garden Manager &
  • Ryan Morehead, owner of Bees Excel
  • Member $12; Nonmember $15
  • Best for ages 7 to 11
  • REGISTER HERE

Join us as we learn how to attract beneficial insects, such as bees, lacewings, and ladybugs to our gardens by providing shelter for them. Participants will go on a nature walk to collect items that they will use to create their very own insect hotel. Each registrant will receive a FREE honey product courtesy of Bees Excel.

Wild Bird Holiday Decorations

  • Thursday, December 5, 6-7 pm
  • Member $8; Nonmember $10
  • Best for ages 6 to 10
  • REGISTER HERE

Learn about the best ways we can help birds during winter while we make bright and tasty treats for them. We’ll create garlands and outdoor ornaments for the Children’s Garden and our own backyard.

Winter Mornings at Myriad Gardens 

  • Thursday, December 19, 10 am-12 pm
  • Friday, December 20, 10 am-12 pm
  • South Lobby Visitor Center and Garden Classroom
  • All ages welcome

Between 10 am and noon guests will have the opportunity to make a natural ornament, learn about winter plants and animals at the education table, play games, read a holiday book, and embark on a scavenger hunt in the Crystal Bridge and Children’s Garden. Then, make a cup of hot chocolate and join us in the Garden Classroom for more holiday festivities!

Gingerbread House Workshop

  • Friday, December 20, 6-8 pm
  • Member $39; Nonmember $45 (includes frosting and candy); additional frosting bags $5
  • All ages welcome. Children ages 8 and under will need chaperone help.
  • REGISTER HERE

We’ll learn about the flavorful ginger root – where it comes from, how it grows – and then discuss the history of gingerbread. We’ll finish by decorating our fragrant masterpieces. All supplies provided including gingerbread structure, frosting, candies for decorating and a little inspiration if needed.

Growing toddler programs at the Myriad Gardens

 

By Kodi Clifford, Education Assistant

Over the past four years, toddler programs at the Myriad Gardens have grown from a single event to two well-crafted programs that encourage toddler socialization, development, and an excitement for learning.

Building up Reading Wednesdays from a 15-minute storytime held in an empty corner of our lobby, to the solid program that it is today, has been such a true joy!  Adding song elements and a garden-related craft really helps capture and hold the children’s attention, gives them a sense of community with the little ones around them, and reminds them what they’ve learned from the books we’ve read together. When I first started working at the Gardens, Reading Wednesdays would see maybe five kids each week. Right now, we average about twelve per week, and we are proud to say many are regulars. I find that familiarity helps the kiddos become more comfortable expressing themselves in group settings.

While trial-running our Little Saplings program last year, I quickly concluded that toddlers learn best with their hands!  Thus, I began focusing on toddler activities on sensory development, movement, fine motor skills, logical thinking, and imaginary play. While teaching programs, I place a real emphasis on out-of-the-box thinking when speaking to toddlers, especially during scavenger hunts, and during what I refer to as ‘Topic Talks’; periods of time where I introduce a nature concept, and we talk about how it relates to them and the world around them. We at the Myriad Gardens want our programs to cultivate well-rounded learning for ALL ages.

Beginning this year with a major Visitor Center renovation coming to completion, I searched to find the proper fit for the programs in the new space.  Despite the challenge, I’ve found a set up that really functions well, especially with the introduction of carpet squares for Reading Wednesday, as well as fun new furniture pieces in our reading space.  These items really help reading time feel like a fixture in our Visitor Center.  Similarly, the ever-changing living layout of the Children’s Garden lends to a sense of wonder and discovery during Little Saplings, paving the way for surprise learning opportunities, such as stumbling upon tadpoles inhabiting the pond or watching a bird building a nest.

Knowing how therapeutic and nourishing a garden can be, I strive to shape and support nature enthusiasm from a young age.