For Educators


"Every child should have mud pies, grasshoppers, water-bugs, tadpoles, frogs, mud-turtles, elderberries, wild strawberries, acorns, chestnuts, tress to climb, brooks to wade in, water-lilies, woodchucks, bats, bees, butterflies, various animals to pet, hay fields, pine cones, rocks to roll, sand, snakes, huckleberries and hornets: and any child who has been deprived of these has been deprived of the best of his education."  -Luther Burbank 

There are several different ways you can use the refuge as an outdoor classroom.  Consider taking advantage of several self-guided activities at the refuge that can easily be led by a teacher or other responsible adult.  Ranger/volunteer guided educational visits are available on a limited basis as refuge staffing allows.  March through May is very busy at the refuge, if you are able to, consider visiting at another time of year.  Here is a summary of self-guided and guided options for your educational visit:



Self-Guided Educational Visits

You are welcome to come visit on your own! Just let us know when you come so we can count you and your students as a self-guided group. We report to congress annually our attendance so we need to document how many people use our refuge.  Please sign in the visitor log with the total number of adults and students and identify your self as a guided school group.

Below are guides for a few activities that you are welcome to use to help you facilitate a self-guided visit to the refuge.  Even though we can't always provide a ranger or volunteer to guide your visit please email or call us at 318-742-1219 to let us know that you plan to do a self-guided group visit to the refuge.  That way we can let you know if another group is planning to be here at the same time.  


trail signs and people_499x375

Wildlife Challenge Trail Guide (starting from the east)

Wildlife Challenge Trail Guide (starting from the west)


Visitor Center Worksheet (Grades K/1st)

Visitor Center Worksheet (Grades 2nd/3rd)

Visitor Center Worksheet (Grades 4th/5th)

Visitor Center Worksheet (Grades 8+)


Outdoor Nature Scavenger Hunt - COMING SOON!


Nature Discovery Play Area Guide

Headquarters Unit Trail Map  


 Ranger/Volunteer-Guided Educational Visits 

Reserved educational visits to the Refuge are scheduled Wednesday through Saturday as refuge staffing allows and are free of charge. If you can't make it here, a ranger/volunteer may be able to come to your school, just contact us.  

Complete the reservation form and email back to: or drop the form off at the refuge office.

reservation form Word Document

reservation form PDF

  • Groups must have more than 13 people, but no more than 60 on a single day.
  • Return your reservation form to Red River NWR at least 3 weeks prior to your requested visit date.
  • Most groups arrange 1 to 2 hours of guided educational activities and then leave while some groups stay longer completeing self-guided activities.
  • Be aware, that a teacher or adult chaperone may be asked to help lead some activities.
  • We suggest this minimum ratio of adult chaperones based on grade levels:  1 adult /8 students for PreK to grade 2, 1 adult/10 students for grades 3-5, and 1 adult/15 students for grades 7-17. 

Refuge staff will contact you via email or phone to confirm that a visit has been scheduled. 

Guided field visits are interactive, inquiry-based and most of our activities take place outside, proper footwear (closed toe shoes) and seasonal clothing are essential for an enjoyable visit. 


Ranger/Volunteer-Guided Homeschool Classes

A set schedule of 2 hour monthly classes for homeschool students.  Please visit our homeschool class website for registration information.

Nature Tots

 An hour-long family program geared toward children ages 3-5.  Nature Tots takes place at 10:30 AM on the 1st Saturday of most months, check our calendar of events on our homepage to check for current dates. 

Summper Camps

Visit our summer camps webpage to learn about what camps the refuge offers and how you can register for them. 

Please check our homepage for a calendar of special events that are open to the public!