MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Students in the Madison School District have built wooden boxes that will hold activity booklets and be placed in parks and nature centers.

The "Nature Passports" are a way to encourage visitors to explore parks and nature centers and record their observations, the Wisconsin State Journal reported . The booklets include scavenger hunts and journaling activities. This year's passports focus on adaptations and changes that happen during the seasons.

The box building project is a partnership between the nonprofit environmental learning network Nature Net and Jefferson Middle School.

"It was a big project for us to do," said Emma Mayhew, who will be a ninth-grader at Memorial High School. "We hadn't really done much in (woodworking) before."

The boxes were constructed during the spring semester and have been slowly installed at Nature Net sites. Students worked with Memorial High School technology and engineering teacher Miles Tokheim.

"It was the very first time I used more than probably just a drill at my house so it was fun to do," said Marco Tatili, who will be a ninth-grader at Memorial.

The boxes include a note with details about the partnership and which student completed the project.

"I thought it was really cool because I was getting to make something other people would be able to see and would be there for 15 to 20 years," said Maddie Ballweg, who will be a ninth-grader at Memorial. Her box was installed outside of the Discovery Center and Herpetarium at the Vilas Zoo.

The Aldo Leopold Nature Center, the UW Arboretum, Cave of the Mounds, Vilas Zoo, Sandburg Woods park and the MacKenzie Center in Poynette are all receiving new boxes.


Information from: Wisconsin State Journal,