University of Minnesota
University of Minnesota
College of Biological Sciences

Testimonials and Impacts

Considering bringing your students to Cedar Creek? We pride ourselves on the quality of field trips we provide and the authentic science experiences students have here. We know we're biased though, so don't just take our word for it! Below are a handful of comments from teachers who brought students to learn science at Cedar Creek.


Click here for our 2018-2019 impacts summary.

Click here for a brief set of powerpoint slides from a talk about assessment given at the 2019 Midwest Environmental Education Conference.


Teachers discussing their Cedar Creek field trip experiences:

Thank you for an absolutely wonderful visit! I really can’t say enough positive things about you, your staff, the activities, the facilities, and the hike. Not only did the students have an excellent visit, got out in the natural world, got to work with scientists, but they also learned a bunch of science, too! What could be better!

Thank you SO very much for all of your time, effort, planning, patience, guidance, humor, and of course MAD SCIENCE SKILLS. YOU are the very heart and souls of why our Cedar Creek spring field trips are so amazing. The 8th graders learned a lot from you, and were very positive about their experience this past week.

This is the best field trip we take all year! The staff works to make our experience fit our Science standards. Students remember it all year.

Visiting Cedar Creek and doing “real science” in nature with my kids was an invaluable experience. Every kid should be able to hike through three ecosystems in one day. Every kid should be able to run through a prairie.

Cedar Creek staff are great! They have always worked well with our students (even when our students have been resistant to outdoor experiences!).

Every year, the educational programming gets better and better.

Without this fantastic opportunity, our students would not be exposed to relevant science in the field, interaction with real scientists and a chance to live authentic science.  The opportunity to collect genuine data and observe the results was eye opening to many students. They all walked away with a greater appreciation for nature and the many interactions that occur on a daily basis. The reflections heard on the bus ride back to school and as students returned to classes were very touching.  

The curriculum was great. The students who went on the field trip presented their data to the rest of the classes and taught them how to do a transect. Very meaningful for the students and fun to watch them be the experts. We hung their transect data in the school hallway.

Excellent engagement! Thorough explanations!

The warmest welcome of any field trip.

The experiences at Cedar Creek are ones that my 8th graders put on their list of “best thing I did all year/unforgettable experiences”. I love that!

We love the Cedar Creek experience. It is close enough to do in a day and get kids quality science in a natural setting.

I like how the naturalists have the students make observations in BigBio instead of just talking about it.

It was awesome – very flexible (even the day after a snow day)!

We had a great time on our field trip to Cedar Creek! The staff was awesome and the transect, tour, and history lessons were superior quality. Thanks!



Have you seen any specific impacts of Cedar Creek programs on student learning?

As a middle school science teacher in the urban district of Minneapolis Public Schools, I want my students to have the experience of being part of nature and spending time outside. Many of my seventh graders have never spent time in the natural world when they first come into my classroom. My students loved the trip and appreciated the hiking, ecosystem sampling and discussions we had. I thoroughly enjoyed watching my seventh graders run through the prairie, jump over small woody shrubs, and simply lay down in the grass. I thought to myself, “Yes, this is what being a kid is all about.” In the city, kids don’t get to do that.

[I saw m]ore engagement and leadership skills by students who went upon their return. One student who was failing science did an amazing job on the field trip asking relevant questions. When we got back he was the main presenter when they talked about what they did at Cedar Creek. Fun to see this student shine.

They beamed about this experience throughout the remainder of the semester. It was a great experience and they got a lot out of it. It was the first time a lot of them had experienced something like this.

Yes – Students leave appreciating their environment and the world around them. They feel validated when they are “heard” (when presenting their data at our spring trip).

We do a remote game camera unit and compare our camera captures to those of Cedar Creek. Being on the grounds of Cedar Creek is vital for the student understanding of this field research study.

Students connect various lessons during the semester back to Cedar Creek.

Yes! My students don’t go out in nature much and also rarely get to see what a real science research can look like.

We did independent research projects later in the spring and a couple of groups used the data collected on their field trip to supplement the data they collect for their project. They were also able to utilize some of the statistical tests to analyze data that they had collected.

My students get a chance to do real science – they design their own experiments and collect data that day!

Having the chance to touch and experience technology associated with natural resources work and learn from experts was very helpful.