Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens welcomes homeschooled students individually or as a group. Our standards-based field trip programs can be readily adapted for a wide age range of youth and our seasonal camps provide experiential learning opportunities for children ages 3 – 13. Join one of our scheduled single-session or multi-session homeschool programs below, or choose from any of our field trip classes, group tours or seasonal camps to meet your specific needs.

Interested in a program that's already sold out? Email us to be placed on our waiting list.

For Homeschoolers

Explore the Tropical Forest

Ages 3 – 13
Tues., Feb. 20 | 2:30 – 3:30 p.m.
Taught by Dr. Maria Wheeler-Dubas
$5 per person (child or adult)
Ages 3 – 6: SEED Classroom
Ages 7 – 13: Center for Sustainable Landscapes Classroom

Explore the mysteries of the Tropical Forest in a fun and interactive game show style.

About the Instructor: Maria was homeschooled K – 12, and after college, she went on to earn her Ph.D. in biology from Duquesne University. She has nearly 15 years of experience working in informal science education settings, including zoos, museums and botanical gardens. She loves sharing the wonders of nature with children and families.

For Homeschoolers

Nature Art

Ages 3 – 13
Tues., March 20 | 2:30 – 3:30 p.m.
Taught by Jennifer Torrance
$5 per person (child or adult)
Ages 3 – 6: SEED Classroom
Ages 7 – 13: Center for Sustainable Landscapes Classroom

Let’s celebrate art and nature at Phipps! Investigate, identify and create art projects with unique objects found in nature. The art projects include painting with natural materials found in Phipps Conservatory, creating upcycled tote bags and developing a pollination city.

About the Instructor: Jennifer graduated from Allegheny College, majoring in environmental science and minoring in writing. She has been at Phipps since May 2016 and with the Science Education team since November 2016. She loves introducing children to fascinating new concepts and sparking creativity and passion for the natural world. Her goal is to encourage empathy for and exploration of the natural world, and to inspire children to seek outdoor adventure and knowledge about the sciences and the environment.

For Homeschoolers

Carnivorous Plants

Ages 3 – 13
Tues., April 17 | 2:30 – 3:30 p.m.
Taught by Jennifer Torrance
$5 per person (child or adult)
Ages 3 – 6: SEED Classroom
Ages 7 – 13: Center for Sustainable Landscapes Classroom

Be immersed in the world of meat-eating plants as you observe various species and learn how and why these carnivores eat insects, tadpoles and small fish.

About the Instructor: Jennifer graduated from Allegheny College, majoring in environmental science and minoring in writing. She has been at Phipps since May 2016 and with the Science Education team since November 2016. She loves introducing children to fascinating new concepts and sparking creativity and passion for the natural world. Her goal is to encourage empathy for and exploration of the natural world, and to inspire children to seek outdoor adventure and knowledge about the sciences and the environment.

For Homeschoolers

Conservation Crew

Grades 5 – 8
Wednesdays, March 21 – April 4 | 4 – 5 p.m.
$100 members | $120 nonmembers (price is for the entire series)
SEED Classroom

Dive into conservation science in this three-part course! Use the scientific method and think critically to conduct hands-on research and service projects. Plus, connect with local scientists.

For Homeschoolers

EcoFamilies

Families with children ages 7 and up
Mondays, Jan. 29 and Feb. 5, 12 and 26 | 2 – 3:30 p.m.
$100 members | $120 nonmembers (price is for the entire series and entire family)
SEED Classroom

Learn what it means to be a scientist in this four-part class. Conduct your own research study at home as a family and share it at an exciting science fair at the end of the course! Classes will provide learning opportunities for a wide range of ages.


Parents' Corner

For Homeschoolers

What Is Your Family's Favorite Outdoor Activity or Craft?

You've spent lots of time learning together as a family — and we want to hear from you! Submit up to 80 words and a photo describing your favorite outdoor activity or nature craft to us via email at scied@phipps.conservatory.org. We'll pick our favorite and share it on this page!


Phipps homeschool programming is planned with oversight from the Phipps Educational Advisory Committee for Charter and Homeschools.

For Homeschoolers

Phipps Educational Advisory Committee for Charter and Homeschools

The Phipps Educational Advisory Committee for Charter and Homeschools (PEACCH) is a group of educators who meet regularly during the school year to foster collaboration and learning across schools and museums. The committee is made of home and charter school educators and museum educators in the Pittsburgh area.

Photos © Cory Doman, Paul g. Wiegman