Educational Resources to Purchase

The Missouri Botanical Garden offers a variety of DVDs and curriculum guides for educators to purchase for on-going use in their classroom and school.

Curriculum Guides


Exploring Terrestrial Biomes dvdsTo help bring the fascinating and ever-changing world of plants and nature to life for students and teachers, the Garden worked in partnership with Herb Halpern and the Evergreen Project to produce themed video series, each featuring in-depth and easy-to-integrate learning modules. 

Series topics:

The Biology of Plants series and What’s It Like Where You Live? Exploring Terrestrial Biomes series are available in DVD format. These DVDs are closed captioned. DVDs are $22.95 each or $114.94 for the series of six, plus shipping. Shipping is $3 per DVD, or $8 for a series of six.

How to Order
Download a printable order form. If you have questions, please call us at (314) 577-5185.

Available on DVD.
Average running time for each learning module is approximately 15 minutes.

Stem structure in lima beanLearning module: How Plants Grow 
Key concepts: Germination and Life Cycle of Plants 
Summary: Will the seeds we planted and watered germinate? What about those we put in the dark cabinet? What about those in the refrigerator? Those important questions are asked and answered as our enthusiastic youngsters conduct a controlled experiment to find out how seeds germinate, look inside a lima bean to see what seeds are really like, and follow a plant’s life cycle from seed to seed again. The video depicts a hands-on approach that your class can view and discuss by itself, or use to precede and follow similar activities that you conduct.

Learning module: How Plants Get Food 
Key concepts: Getting Nutrients and Photosynthesis 
Summary: Carbon Dioxide – Oxygen – Chlorophyll – Photosynthesis. Big words and a big idea. But this video explains and uses them in a bright, entertaining way to help every student in your class recognize them and the fundamentals of how plants make their own food. And they’ll find out why the process is so important to the rest of the world.

Learning module: What is Pollination? (A Sticky Question) 
Key concepts: Interactions Between Plants and Animals 
Summary: If you tell a youngster about pollination, and maybe show a few still photos, will he or she understand? Perhaps. But show the real thing happening, and then let that youngster actually do it—and you’ve taught a lesson that he or she will never forget. Watch as our eight-year-olds pollinate plants—and observe from close up bees, butterflies, moths and hummingbirds at work.

Learning module: How Seeds Get Here…and There 
Key concepts: Seed Dispersal
Summary: How did that weed get in the garden? Why do dandelions pop up in different places? How do plants spread from one place to another, even where there are miles of water in between? Seeds can’t walk, or swim or fly—or can they? Come with us on a fascinating field trip as our eight-year-olds discover how seeds move. One finds that even he carries a few hitch-hikers. Another flies through the air on a dandelion seed. And they all take part in the “great seed chase.”

Learning module: How Plants Live in Different Places 
Key concepts: Plant Adaptations
Summary: Most plants need light, air, water and soil to grow. But what about plants that live in places where those things are hard to get—like deserts or rainforests? In this video, our eight-year-olds explore both of these habitats and discover adaptations such as most desert plants having either very small leaves or no leaves at all, prickly spines and a waxy feel, and rainforest plants having buttresses, prop or stilt roots, climbing over others and having drip-tip leaves.

Learning module: Plants and Life on Earth 
Key concept: The Role of Plants in the Environment 
Summary: Our eight-year-olds build a graphic illustration of our environment in a unique way. They put together a giant jigsaw puzzle, with each piece depicting an element of the environment. The result is an information-filled video that explains in an entertaining way the importance of plants in our life.



Available on DVD.
Average running time for each learning module is approximately 30 minutes.

Learning module: Exploring the Temperate Deciduous Forest
Summary: The team begins by mapping the forests of the world. In the very same week in March, the kids take an “electronic trip” to a school in Washington, Vermont, and to another in Austin, Texas. What do you think they found at these two locations in the Temperate Deciduous Forest? Snow in one state, and blossoms in another? In a lab experiment, the kids remove chlorophyll from a green leaf, which helps them understand why leaves change color in the fall. They take a trip to the zoo and find that the Temperate Deciduous Forest has some animals that migrate, some that hibernate and others that keep active all winter.

Team Leader Roderick shows the team desert plantsLearning module: Exploring the Desert 
Summary: The student research team takes an electronic trip to the North American desert—the Great Basin, the Sonoran, the Mojave and the Chihuahuan. They find out what it’s like there from kids in four real elementary schools, each located in one of those deserts. Students learn where deserts are located and why they’re found there. Rainshadows are also illustrated. As the team gathers its research, it conducts experiments on plants with Team Leader Roderick. The kids see how animals such as the sidewinder rattlesnake have adapted to the hot and dry environment.

Learning module: Exploring the Grasslands 
Summary: Christine and Sam investigate a large prairie after it has burned. They learn that grasslands receive more rainfall than deserts, but less than forests. Team Leader Roderick points out that fire is one of the ways the grasslands are maintained. Lightning often ignites the dry grasses. In prairie restoration programs, fields are intentionally set on fire. In the season following fire, the tops of prairie plants grow bigger and more seeds are on the plant. Animals are recognized as vital to the health of the grasslands too. The kids discover that the grazing herds common to the prairie keep woody seedlings from becoming trees and shrubs. The find that burrowing animals help rejuvenate the rich soil.

Learning module: Exploring the Rainforests 
Summary: Did you know that there are two kinds of rainforests? Team Leader Robyn and Sarah visit the Temperate Rainforests of the Pacific Northwest. Upon their return to St. Louis, they discover that their friends have been busy researching Tropical Rainforests. By comparing the data each has collected and investigating tropical plants, team members are able to make comparisons of the two distinctly different rainforests. In a lab experiment, team members analyze the decomposition rate of leaves in both rainforests.

Learning module: Exploring the Tundra 
Summary: Team Leader Tyler flies to a native Alaskan village where the caribou make their annual migration. He is met by local students who help him investigate life found at the top of the glove. Meanwhile, team members back in St. Louis contact other schools in the Arctic Tundra. They find that very few trees grow in the tundra because roots cannot penetrate the permafrost. Everyone discovers, too, that plants and animals have many identifiable adaptations which allow them to live in such a harsh environment.

Learning module: Exploring the Taiga 
Summary: Team Leader Tyler visits the Hayden family living on Lake Minchumina in the Alaskan interior. Their log lodge is 100 miles from the nearest road. Fortunately, Jack Hayden is a bush pilot and Tyler is able to get a fantastic glimpse of the taiga as they fly together over the vast coniferous forest. He investigates bogs and muskegs too. Back at home base, team members compare leaves from coniferous trees with those from broad leaf trees. Using microscopes, the kids discover that a secret lies within the cells. Later, during a hike, they find out why so many trees with needles are found in the taiga.


Curriculum Guides

Call (314) 577-5185 for information on how to order the following item.

A Place to Learn Field Trip Guide (Grades K–8)
Twenty-one tested lessons help you use the Missouri Botanical Garden to present concepts in ecology, plant biology, art, classification, math and social studies. Maps, leader guides and reproducible student activity sheets accompany each lesson. (Sample lessons are available for free download.)
Price: $12 (+$3 shipping/handling)