From college students down to kindergarteners, we provide students with engaging opportunities to learn about and connect to nature. As practicing field ecologists, our staff members bring real world science into all of our education programs. We help open students’ eyes to the beauty, complexity, and fun of learning about the natural world and how we, as people, fit into it.
We offer educational field trips at creeks and open space preserves for all ages, kindergarten through college age. Students will learn about their local ecosystem and then take action to improve it through hands-on activities such as planting native plants, removing invasive species, and native plant care. Please fill out our group request form and we will be in contact with you to follow up.
Pollution Prevention Classroom Visits
From their classroom, students dive into the watery world of San Francisco Bay, step into a time machine, build out a watershed model, or conduct a study of sewage sludge to learn how they can prevent water pollution and keep our bay healthy. We provide this program to grades 2-7 at schools in the Palo Alto Regional Water Quality Control Plant service area, which includes the communities of East Palo Alto, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, Mountain View, Palo Alto, and Stanford. For more information, contact Kathleen Tarlow.
High School Creek Scientists
Grassroots Ecology offers high school students the opportunity to take part in a real-world study of their local creek using benthic macroinvertebrates, including snails, clams, worms, and the larval stages of many insects (dragonflies, mayflies, caddisflies, stoneflies) that live at the bottom of the creek. The invertebrates we find in a creek can tell us much about habitat quality there. During Creek Scientists, students gather benthic macroinvertebrate samples from a local creek, learn to identify the organisms in their samples using microscopes, and process the resulting data to develop metrics of creek health. Students follow careful field and lab protocols based on those used by the State of California and biologists around the world. This program is currently offered in the spring to high schools in the Sequoia Union School District. For more information, contact Shelley Pneh.