Create lifetime memories with your students on a swamp adventure!
Let our fascinating attractions and hands-on programs reinforce your classroom lessons. Educational programs are designed for 15-25 students at a time. Programs last 30-45 minutes.
ReservationsAdvance reservations are required for all field trips. Reservations are taken beginning August 1 and fill quickly for the entire school year.
For more information, contact Liz Vaughn at (843) 553-0515 or email [email protected].
To help plan your trip, see our list of teacher resources.
Important Admission Information
- Prices reflect discount with reservation
- Unscheduled groups are charged full gate admission.
- Assigned chaperones receive discounted admission; please phone for details
- Siblings (age 3 and up) that attend any trip are charged admission.
Natural History Programs
These programs can be adapted for most ages and abilities
The best way to see a swamp is by boat! Enjoy a safe ride through the blackwater swamp as our staff paddle large flat-bottomed boats among the cypress trees. Look for alligators, turtles, and birds.
Students are introduced to reptiles and amphibians through the use of live animals, bones, skins, and discussion. This hands-on lecture compares these two classes of animals.
Students can fish from the edge of the swamp with long-handled strainers for the entire program. They are able to study aquatic life close-up and identify the plants, fish, and insects that they have captured.
Blow up the Swamp
The program begins with a short session of dip netting, then students view their catches, magnified through a video microscope. Adaptations and life cycles are discussed.
Using skulls and mounts, this program explores the various features of fish that are necessary for life under water. Students are then given a tour of our Swamparium to see and discuss live examples.
From Worms to Wings
Students examine the life cycle and physiology of butterflies using both live & preserved specimens. The lesson continues at the giant butterfly sculpture and includes a tour of the Butterfly House.
Students learn why plants have flowers and fruits. Then they tour the gardens in and around the Butterfly House to find examples of what they have learned.
Big Bunt Hunt
Students explore rotting logs to discover native arthropods at work in the food chain. They will then view their catches through a video microscope. Adaptations and life cycles are discussed.
Birds of a Feather
Students learn about the wide variety of adaptations in birds and their use in identification. They are then led on an outdoor bird search using binoculars.
This program defines fossils and their formation in the changing South Carolina landscape. Students are able to search outside in the sand for real fossils and keep their finds.
See more and have your questions answered on this guided tour of the Butterfly House and Swamparium. A good choice for groups who won’t have time to visit these buildings on their own after the programs.
Cultural History Programs
Designed for 3rd to 5th grade
Cypress Gardens is offering four new educational programs focusing on cultural history. These new programs will complement the natural history programs already offered to local schools. These cultural history programs are designed to address the SC Academic Standards for Social Studies, Science, and Math for 3rd to 5th grade.
This program promotes the understanding of African crafts and skill brought to South Carolina through slave trade. Students will make & decorate a pot using techniques similar to those used by African American slaves in the Lowcountry.
This program teaches the basic principles for sorting & interpreting objects found at archaeological sites. Students will sort and identify objects from a replica site. They will explore how these objects tell us about the former inhabitants or activities that occurred at the site.
History of Rice in SC
This program shares the historical and cultural significance of rice and other African plants. Students will learn about the history of rice production in the Lowcountry to better understand its importance to the historical development of the state. Students will visit a demonstration rice field to learn how African American slaves constructed and maintained rice fields.
The program teaches basic archaeological principles. Students will “excavate” a replica unit, map the objects they find, and interpret the past activity they think is represented by the artifacts they have uncovered.