No Boundaries to the Boundary Waters

School Visits

Build on classroom learning with a school visit. Our staff and expert guest presenters are ready to engage your students with virtual and in-person visits.

Bring the Boundary Waters
to your classroom

Our staff will come to your school or youth organization for hands-on environmental education that brings the BWCA to life. We offer a variety of programs for grades 6-12 that meet MN state standards in science, social studies, language arts, and physical education. Topics range from ecosystems and water quality to teamwork and outdoor skills, all of which inspire students to learn more about the natural world.

Three kids making fire in a metal pan on the grass

Distance Learning or
Online Presentations

We are offering free online resources that start at the computer but end in the outdoors. We’ll bring the experts to your screen. Virtual presentations are available on a variety of topics. Kick off your Boundary Waters unit with an introductory presentation from the Friends, or explore a specific BWCA topic with one of our virtual guest speakers!

Sample Lessons

BWCA Skull Investigation

The BWCA is home to many organisms that all have adaptations suited to their environment. Students work in groups to make observations and gather evidence to solve the mystery of: What animal skull is this?

Map and Compass in the BWCA

The BWCA can be a confusing mix of water, shoreline, islands, and trails — it can be hard to keep it all straight! Students will learn how to use a compass and complete an orienteering course set up in their school yard. They will also explore the various features of a map and how to interpret landscape features around them

Watershed Investigation

The BWCA is home to some of the world’s cleanest water! In this course, students will form an understanding of a watershed, the watersheds in the BWCA, and watersheds in their own community. We’ll explore how elements in nature filter out pollutants as we test different bodies of water and measure their water quality.

The kids were interested right away. To hear and see kids excited about one of my favorite places on the planet is exciting and motivating! The notion of stewardship is vital if we are going to continue to have places such as the BWCAW; what you are bringing into the classroom is a seed, of sorts, that may bloom bigger than you ever imagined!

6th Grade Teacher

Highlights of Previous Visits

Four students smiling, in two green canoes pulled side by side in a lake

Take a Canoe Trip

For many students in Minnesota, the Boundary Waters is a remote place they may never have the opportunity to visit. To alleviate that barrier, we are committed to sending young people from underserved communities on cost-free trips into the BWCAW.

Get Your School Involved

For access to our online resources, please fill out a few questions, as it helps us to continue to offer these free resources!

Funding for this project was provided by the Minnesota Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund as recommended by the Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources (LCCMR).

Minnesota Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund