Self-guided Discovery Programs

New This Year...A wider range of new and revised Discovery Programs that are grade-specific and correlated with North Carolina Essential Standards for Science and/or Social Studies. Please see descriptions below.

Coming Soon...Badge correlations for Girl and Boy Scouts. Please check our website in the coming months for updates.

These self-guided programs allow a class to conduct their own study of Tanglewood's natural areas. Instructions are mailed to teachers prior to the program. On the day of the program the group leader picks up an "Activity Box" at the park gate. It contains all the materials necessary for group leaders to conduct their own program at a designated park location. All Discovery Programs include group activities and/or games and a nature walk.

Discovery programs are operated year round.

Click here to view Registration Information & Fees

For additional information on discovery programs, call (336) 703-6436 or email

Title Grade Level Description
Sense of Wonder Kindergarten (Science: KP1.1, 1.2; KP2.1, 2.2; KE 1.1, 1.2, 1.3; KL1.2) (Social Studies: KH1.2; KG1.3, 2.1, 2.2) Participants use their senses to observe properties of the natural world, including changes in the weather and seasons. The nature walk includes examinations of some of the park’s physical features and an opportunity to learn about some of the wild animals that live at Tanglewood.
Who Lives Here? Grade One (Science: 1L1.1, 1.2, 1.3; 1L2.1, 2.2) Studies: 1G2.1; 1C & G1.2) By playing Habitat Bingo along the Nature Trail, participants learn to recognize animal signs and discover “who lives here”. Other activities teach how local habitats favor the survival of some animals and not others. Groups also learn how land managers and private citizens can change and/or protect the environment for the continued survival of organisms.
Insect Extravanganza Grade Two (Science: 2P1.1, 1.2; 2L1.1, 1.2; 2L2.1, 2.2) (Social Studies: 2H1.1, 2G2.2, 2C & G1.1) This program compares and contrasts the lifecycles of various insects that live at Tanglewood, with an emphasis on growth, development and reproduction. Along the Nature Trail participants take part in “communication stations” to replicate various sounds that certain insects use for communication or protection. Groups also learn about the beautiful Monarch Butterfly, it’s amazing migration journey, and what people can to do improve Monarch habitat for their continued survival.
Tanglewood Trees Grade Three (Science: 3L2.1, 2.2, 2.3, 2.4) (Studies: 3G1.3; 3E1.2; 3C&G2.2) This program relates how local soils and climate favor the growth of a wide diversity of trees that benefit wildlife and people in many ways. Participants discover different ways to identify some common Tanglewood trees along the Nature Trail. Tree structures and functions are also emphasized, along with the lifecycle of a tree and how it’s eventual death and decay play an important role in maintaining a healthy forest.
Native Americans of the Piedmont Grade Four (Science: 4E1.2; 4L1.3) (Social Studies: 4H1.1, 1.3; 4G1.2, 1.3, 1.4) This program introduces groups to the “Woodland” of the Piedmont Native Americans that lived in Piedmont NC prior to European settlement. Participants examine natural resources that were necessary not just for survival, but also for fun and games as they walk the Nature Trail. The role of natural events, such as moon phases, is correlated with seasonal traditions. Ways in which natives interacted with and modified their environment through practices such as agriculture are also explored.
EcoExplorers Grade Five (Science: 5P2.1; 5L2.1, 2.2, 2.3) (Social Studies: 5G1.2) The Nature Trail takes walkers through three distinct ecosystems. Along the way groups investigate each by classifying resident organisms according to their biotic functions and discussing the interconnected relationships they share. At the lake ecosystem participants take on the role of “raindrops” in a fun game that emphasizes the impact of nonpoint source (NPS) pollution on aquatic ecosystems and the role that citizens can play in its prevention.
Fun Box PreK - Middle School The Fun Box is perfect for day camp and daycare groups, homeschoolers, and church groups. It contains a variety of fun, nature-related activities for children of all ages. All activities encourage active participation and employ themes that can be incorporated into a nature walk. Books, games, and other supplemental materials are available in the box to help ensure a variety of fun learning experiences throughout your visit.

General Park Information

  • Tanglewood is open daily from 7:00 am – Sunset (except on Christmas Day).
  • Pets must be under control of their owner and kept on a leash no longer than six feet at all times. All pets must have current inoculations for rabies. Pets must be kept and never left unattended. Pet owners are responsible for their pets using the designated waste area and cleaning up after their pets at the designated area.
  • Golf, Horse Stables, Hiking Trails and Accommodations are available year-around.
  • Gardens are open year-around. Blooming seasons vary.
  • Tennis activities are available from April to November.
  • Water activities can be enjoyed from Memorial Day to Labor Day.
  • Entrance Fee:
    • $8.00 - Buses
    • $2.00 - All others
    Annual passes can be purchased at the Welcome Center for $25.00. Entrance fees & Annual Admission do not include Admission to Special Events.