Programs sponsored by the Friends of Rawlings Conservatory

In 2015, the Friends of the Rawlings Conservatory started the Little Leaves program. Through the help of volunteers and our donors, we have brought over to 900 students to the Conservatory to experience some of our planet’s most amazing habitats.

Little Leaves is a science-based learning program at the Rawlings Conservatory for second grade students in Druid Hill Park, Mondawmin, and other neighborhoods surrounding the Conservatory. Many of these students live in neighborhoods and attend schools negatively impacted by the April 2015 unrest. Little Leaves opens up the worlds of second graders at a time when their environment may not positively support exploration, imagination, and connections to nature.

Second grade is a critical time for developing interest in science and the world at large. Children in the second grade are learning a broad range of science skills centered on observation, description, and asking questions. Little Leaves supports this growth in science-based knowledge and skills by immersing second graders in other natural worlds, right in their own backyards.

The Little Leaves curriculum is designed to support and supplement the Maryland State Science Standards for the second grade. Students complete Little Leaves with a better understanding of how plants work, knowledge of what plants need to survive in different habitats, how to use their senses to observe natural phenomenon, and how to visually illustrate their observations through drawing.