Big Backyard is a series of nature walks around the Fiske school and adjacent lands that enhances the existing science and social studies curriculum in each grade.  BBY walks emphasize observation, learning to ask good questions, problem solving, and respect for the natural environment – plus, they are a lot of fun!

BBY walks take place during the school day and last 30-75 minutes. The theme of each walk is coordinated with the Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks. The success of the program depends on parent volunteers, who are asked to participate in one of the Big Backyard Basic Training sessions as well as Grade Level Training.  To get involved, please contact the Fiske PTO at



Basic Training is conducted in early September to provide an overview of the program and a review of basic environmental science principles.  Fran Ludwig and Karen McCarthy, K-5 Science Coordinator, lead the training. For more information, contact Karen at

Monday, September 22, 7:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m. or Tuesday September 23, 9:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. (Volunteers attend only one training) Central Administration Office (lower level Conference Room) 146 Maple Street - enter from Lowell Street.

Grade Level Training is conducted prior to each walk by Fiske BBY Trainers. BBY coordinators communicate training and walk dates to parent volunteers. Supplemental resources, including written walk guides with detailed directions, are available below.

Important note: All parents who work with children in the Big Backyard program must have submitted a CORI form and a picture ID to the Main Office (see Mary Lou Chamberland for details) at least 2 weeks before the actual classroom walks. CORI checks are good for 3 years. 

 Walk Guides:



Walk Training Videos

  • Video Link (links to Lexington Public Schools admin website)