The Living Laboratory

The four acres of Trail End grounds contain dozens of trees, scores of shrubs and vines, and a small menagerie of wild animals. To make this resource available for local students, the staff of the Trail End State Historic Site have created The Living Laboratory collection of site-based and hands-on science activities.

Each of the lessons meets the most recent Wyoming State Standards for Science (as of 2018), and is designed to be teacher-led. Some lessons are more appropriate for third and fourth graders, while others might stretch the limits of the average eighth grader. All can be adapted to meet the individual needs of the classroom.


Divided into four sections, the lessons include:

  • Introduction to Trail End's Grounds
  • About Trail End
  • Getting to Know the Grounds
  • What's Here?
  • Trees of Trail End
  • Leaf Identification
  • Adopt a Tree
  • Get in Touch with Trees
  • Three Cheers for Trees
  • The Closer You Look
  • GPS Tree Search
  • Habitats and Ecosystems
  • Trees as Habitats
  • Food Chains and Habitats
  • Habitat Lap Sit
  • Web of Life
  • Eye Spy
  • Wildlife Trail Cameras
  • Watch Where You Walk
  • Quick-Frozen Critters
  • Critter Cardio
  • Birds of a Feather
  • Wildlife is Everywhere
  • Outdoor Environment
  • Ground Diversity
  • Energy Detectives
  • Changing Shadows
  • Change Over Time
  • Stewardship & "Leave No Trace"

For more information, contact Trail End. 

Funding & Distribution

The Living Laboratory lesson book was funded by Wyoming State Parks, Historic Sites & Trails, the Wyoming Community Foundation, Dining for a Cause, and the Trail End Guilds, Inc. Copies were distributed to Sheridan County schools in the summer of 2018. Two copies are available at the Kendrick Mansion to be checked out by home school families