School Resources

Give Your Students a “present” of the Past!

Discover our wonderful selection of resources which provide hands-on learning.

PEAK Packs

Cantigny is proud to offer PEAK (Promoting Environmental Awareness in Kids) Packs for use by schools and organized youth groups. PEAK Packs introduce and explore the concepts of Leave No Trace. Leave No Trace is a set of principles for participation in outdoor recreation that seeks to minimize the impact on the natural environment. The program strives to educate all those who enjoy the outdoors about the nature of their recreational impacts as well as techniques to prevent and minimize such impacts. PEAK Packs are available for up to three hours.

The primary goals of the PEAK program are to:

  • Increase awareness of Leave No Trace
  • Promote the stewardship of public lands
  • Meet the demands of diverse youth populations
  • Have fun!

Intended learning outcomes of the PEAK program are to:

  • Develop a sense of stewardship for the natural world
  • Understand how to be safe and prepared for adventures in the outdoors
  • Understand how to reduce impact on the environment when recreating outdoors
  • Introduce the idea of making responsible decisions when participating in outdoor activities

Cantigny offers two Packs for use during a park visit:

PEAK Pack

The PEAK Pack includes six fun and engaging field-tested Activities, which are designed to teach kids age six to twelve about Leave No Trace. Each activity or “module” can be delivered in 30-60 minutes depending on group size, available time, etc. Each module comes in its own plastic folder, and all six modules are included in the backpack- we suggest trying just one or two in a visit.

Each module contains instructions on how to facilitate the activity as well as supporting materials. Also included in the PEAK Pack is a Start Card, which offers many helpful teaching tips and an overview of the Leave No Trace program.

Teen Activity Pack

The Teen Activity Pack is a supplement to the PEAK program and consists of four educational activities designed for older youth audiences. These activities include: “Principle Presentation”, “Ethics Game”, “How Prepared are You?” and “Unlocking the Past.” The hands-on activities have been used to educate both teens and adults about Leave No Trace.

In addition to learning about the seven principles, the activities engage participants in higher-level discussions surrounding the themes of conservation, land ethics and responsible outdoor recreation.

Fees and reservations:

PEAK Packs are available at no charge. A valid driver’s license is required as a deposit at check-out time and a usage agreement must be signed. Teachers/Leaders are asked to reserve backpacks at least one week in advance. A reservation confirmation and facilitator information will be sent. Click here for the backpack request form.

PEAK Packs are available for pickup at the Visitors Center Information Desk at 9:00 am. PEAK Packs must be returned in their original condition after the three hour ‘rental’ period. PEAK Packs loaned out after 2:00 pm may only have 1-2 hours of usage depending on when the Pack was checked out. (Packs must be returned by 5:00 pm).

Tree ID Guide

Our nature trail may be used for hiking before or after your scheduled tour or as the setting for a self-guided outdoor field trip. The wood chip trail is approximately 2 1/2 miles long and follows the perimeter of the park.

Using “Cantigny Adventures: Hiking Trail Guide” students can follow the  hiking trail in search of 20 different trees. Using the photographs of bark, leaves, and seeds or fruit in the Guide, students will learn to identify all the trees, from the red-berried Downy Hawthorne to the tall and wide White Oak. Copies of our Hiking Trail-Tree Identification Guide may be picked up at the Visitors Center kiosk. Please bring your own pens or pencils. (This guide is recommended for summer and fall, when the trees have leaves.)

Download the Tree ID Guide