Field Studies at Cumming Nature Center

Field Studies at Cumming Nature Center

For ages 13-15 years old  | Wednesdays| 10:00am-3:30pm

Imagine your middle schooler out at the wetland’s edge, GPS in hand, recording the location of a wildlife camera. Nearby, another student collects bottom sediment with a Ekman Sampler to take back to the nature center for analysis. Imagine your student working with other young teens to contribute to data for a citizen science project in preparation to present their findings at a village meeting. This data helps inform the village’s approach to key environmental issues such as water quality or changes caused by a warming climate.

From soil science to wildlife management, the Field Studies Program at Cumming Nature Center will prepare students to engage thoughtfully with the natural world using scientific methods and their own curiosity to analyze and address real-world problems. They will build their relationship with the natural world through curiosity-driven conversation, hands-on projects, and outdoor skills development, all within a physically safe and emotionally supportive learning environment. Through the Field Studies Program, students cultivate self-reliance, confidence, and problem-solving skills.

For parents who have questions about how we're keeping your children safe in the wake of COVID-19, we've compiled a list of answers to your frequently asked questions. If you have any other questions, please reach out to our Guest Services team at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Field Studies Registration


For information on weekly outdoor programs for ages 0-4 or 4-12, please see below:

Toddler Forest School (ages 0-4)

Forest School (ages 4-12)


What to expect

The Field Studies Program runs from 10am-3:30pm on Wednesdays. Students should expect instructional mornings including lectures, readings, and presentations. Homework in the form of research, writing, or analysis will be assigned most weeks. Students will be outdoors in all types of environments and weather, so proper clothing and gear is of the utmost importance.


Get Started with Field Studies

Field Studies Fees

   Full Year  Fall only Spring only
 1st Child  $1260  $546  $734
2nd Child $1250 $541 $729
3rd Child $1240 $536 $724

*RMSC members receive a membership discount applied upon registration.

Scholarships are available!        

Email this completed Scholarship Application form to Guest Services at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

2022-23 Field Studies Schedule

Wednesdays | 10am-3:30pm

Fall: Wednesdays, September 14 through December 21 (except November 23) 

Spring: Wednesdays, January 18 through June 7 (except February 22, March 15, and April 5)


Register for Field Studies

Please register for Field Studies by filling out the form below and paying a $50 application fee (this fee is required for registration and will be applied toward tuition upon acceptance into Field Studies). Registration closes on August 1, 2022.

Registration for the 2022 session of Field Studies is closed. Please call 585.374.6160 with inquiries about the program.

Please read the parent handbook before registering your child: DOWNLOAD HANDBOOK. Need-based scholarships are available. To apply, please fill out the Forest School Scholarship Application form.


About the Cumming Nature Center

Cumming Nature Center is a dynamic, 900-acre environmental education facility that celebrates the unique landscape and culture of the Finger Lakes region through experiential learning opportunities and thoughtful exhibits. Educational programming at CNC explores the complex relationship between humans and the natural world. These programs are designed to inspire innovative and creative thinking among participants and provide them with the tools, knowledge, and confidence to take action in the face of local, regional, and global challenges.



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