Spring is in full bloom at the Epcot Flower & Garden Festival. This annual event boasts detailed topiaries, hundreds of floating mini gardens and millions of special blooms.
This gives homeschooling families a fun place to explore the world of botany (along with a myriad of other subjects), with a little bit of pixie dust sprinkled in.
A perfect combination in my book!
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What can Middle & High School Students Learn at the Flower & Garden Festival?
This is clearly a go-to event for learning how to garden or ways to take your garden to the next level.
Disney’s master horticulturists offer fun, informative seminars and local experts are available, willing to answer your questions.
It is a fabulous place to learn directly from the experts.
Life cycle of butterflies
In the Butterfly Pavilion, you can find caterpillars, chrysalises and butterflies. We’ve been fortunate to see butterflies coming from their cocoons and some drying their wings after emerging.
Even though we raised our own Painted Lady butterflies, we still love visiting the butterfly pavilion because there are so many butterfly varieties living there. You never know what you’re going to see when you visit!
Why not work on some mental math while you’re walking around? Use the flowers and topiaries to review math functions, like multiplication, division, percentages, and fractions.
For example, using the floating baskets ask “Out of the total number of baskets you see, what percentage of them are pink?”
This is the perfect place to improve your photography skills or to learn more about your camera’s settings. Flowers don’t move, so you can take the time to set up similar photos while changing your settings to see what happens.
Go back on different days or at different times to study lighting or to take a photographic record of flower growth (the butterfly topiary would be great for this).
If you take a close look at the World Showcase, you’ll notice that each country’s pavilion has plants, containers and topiaries that are specific to that country. In Japan, you will see bonsai trees while Italy shows container gardening.
Do some research before and after your visit and see if you can figure out why Disney’s horticulturists placed what they did in each pavilion.
Trust me; everything is there for a reason!
There are many ways to use the festival to explore art. Take art supplies with you (pencils, chalk, paints, and sketchbook) and find something that catches your eye. Work on your nature journal. Use botanical terms to identify and label flowers.
In the Festival Center, they show a film detailing how they make the festival come to life. Watch it and learn what goes into building the flower towers and topiaries.
The horticulture team loves to share what they know with interested people, especially students. Armed with some new knowledge, see what you can make at home using what you learned.
As you can see, there is a lot for older students to learn at The Epcot Flower & Garden Festival, especially some of those “extra” subjects that kids love.
Traveling with younger kids? Check out my ideas for learning at the Epcot Flower & Garden Festival with younger students on my friend Jen’s site, Forever, For Always No Matter What.