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Home School & Enrichment Workshops

6-9 Year-Old Learners

All classes run on Thursdays from 2:00-4:00pm

January 17: Brine Shrimp. Students will observe and study brine shrimp as they hatch and grow!

January 31: Under Cover. Students explore the various kinds of animals coverings. They will study these adaptations by observing Burpee’s live animals and examples from the permanent collection.

February 14: Floating and Sifting. Students will study the principles of buoyancy, density and displacement; discover how objects can be described by the property of size; demonstrates how tools can be separate mixtures.

February 28: Magnets and Garbage Dumps. Students will explore how magnets work and the properties of mixing, dissolving, filtering and evaporation.

March 14: Dissolving Mysteries. Students will dissolve solids and experiments with a variety of liquids for dissolving various solids.

April 4: Solutions and Mixtures. Experiment with a solution and watch a solid develop.

April 25: Starry Night. Students measure, mix and observe one substance that dissolves in water and another that does not.

May 9: Disappearing Eggshells. Experiment with solutions that will dissolve eggshells.

May 23: Potato “Eye-deas”. Students explore and compare potatoes, measuring and averaging. They will start their own potato and seed.

June 6: Sherlock Combs the Yard. Students look for common attributes among living and nonliving items from Burpee’s backyard and explore patterns in nature.

10 & Up Learners

All classes run on Thursdays from 2:00-4:00pm

January 10: Tobble the Tube. Tubes are found in nature as well as energy production. Design, construct and test tubes. Analyze and make generalizations about their design and strength. Identify a variety of natural tubes.

January 24: It’s All in the Joints. Test various types of joints to determine the strongest. Study how nature uses different types of joints. Examine joints in plants and animals. Build a structure with joints.

February 7: Test My Stress. Students will test the strength of structures, graph and draw conclusions from their results. They will explore symmetry and examine structures with symmetry in nature.

February 21: Suspension Power. Students will study force. They will build and test suspension bridges. They will examine early natural materials used in suspension bridges. 

March 7: Bridge It. Construct a bridge and test it. Research natural bridges and the energy that forms them. 

March 21: Space Olympics. Examine the effects of varying amounts of gravity of different planets. Examine orbits.

April 11: Journey to the Unknown. Students will buy a planetarium. They will work with they phases of the moon, planets and constellations and the model the seasons. 

May 2: Moon Time. Examine the moon. Use a map of the moon to describe distances. Compare to known earth distances. Create a model of an eclipse. 

May 16: Exploration- Causes of Day and Night and Seasons. Create a Parallax model. Students will create a model to show how shadow’s length changes as sunlight strikes the ground at different angles.

May 30: Principles- Foucault Pendulum and Weightlessness. Model the Coriolis effect.

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Meet Your Teacher!


Mrs. Betsy Carlson

Burpee’s home school lead teacher is Betsy Carlson. She has a Masters in Education from Ohio University, and has been a Burpee educator since
2003. She is an enthusiastic member of the home school community
and was a keynote speaker at the international home school conference this summer.

Registration Details

Preregistration and prepayment is required for all classes. Register online at Burpee. org, or by phone (815) 965-3433. Space is limited, register early!

General Public

$16 for one student per class
($13 for each additional sibling)
$80 per semester (September-December) (18% savings applies for additional siblings)

Burpee Museum Members

$12 for one student per class
($9 for each additional sibling)

$60 per semester (September-December) (25% savings applies for additional siblings)