School Group Reservations
Petaluma Adobe State Historic Park and Sonoma State Historic Park
ReserveAmerica will be accepting reservations for the Petaluma Adobe State Historic Park and the three locations within Sonoma State Historic Park: General Vallejo's Home, the Mission, and the Sonoma Barracks. Reservations can be made by calling ReserveAmerica at the toll free number (866) 240-4655.
For parks in the Sacramento area, which are visited by hundreds of school groups each year, reservation information is available on our Capital District webpages.
Año Nuevo and Hearst Castle-San Simeon
For reservations at either Año Nuevo State Reserve or Hearst Castle-San Simeon Historic Monument, call (800) 444-4445 or (916) 414-8400, ext. 4100.
California State Parks is using videoconference technology to bring parks and schools closer together. Please visit our Parks Online Resources for Teachers and Students (PORTS) website for more information. The PORTS 2010/2011 Statistical Report is now available.
Guide to Environmental Education Programs in California State Parks
We do our best to keep this guide as up-to-date as possible, but please be sure to contact the park in which you're interested to verify program availability and any other logistical arrangements that may need to be made prior to your visit.
Other Environmental Education Programs
You might be surprised at the numerous and varied environmental education programs available--and at how many have information available on-line. Please visit our Links for Schools page for more information on programs outside of State Parks.
Service-Learning Opportunities in California State Parks
We also realize that teachers may find it useful to review transcripts for videos shown in our parks in advance of a visit in order to determine if watching a video will be of use to their students. To view transcripts for many of the videos shown in state parks, visit our Video Transcripts page.
Environmental Living and Environmental Studies Programs
The California Environmental Legacy Project
The California Environmental Legacy Project is a new kind of educational media project. Through an integrated set of programs and media resources, it builds public understanding about the deep and inextricable connections we have with the natural world, shaping the very attitudes, behaviors and public policies that will guide our nation toward a sustainable future. The project is dedicated to creating a new climate of stewardship in California.
California Environmental Education Interagency Network
The California Environmental Education Interagency Network (CEEIN) is a state government consortium of environmental educators representing departments, boards and commissions of various state agencies. CEEIN partnership provides a forum for its members to share resources, programs and materials with California's public schools and students in grades kindergarten through university.
Teaching About Climate Change
You will find climate change information and links to other climate change education resources for educators on the Cool Parks page.
Get to Know Contest
Do you encourage creativity and nature appreciation in your students? The Get to Know Contest invites US residents 19 and under to get outside and create original works of art, writing, photography, videography and music inspired by nature. The contest ends November 1, 2014. For more information, visit the Get to Know contest website.
Flags of California
This printable poster shows the flags flown over California since 1542, and gives a brief history of each. Developed in the 1960s, it is still an excellent resource. (Note that the information on the park history trailer and the address of the Department of Parks and Recreation are no longer valid.)
Take the Train to State Parks
Did you know it's easy and cheap for school groups to take the train to many of California's State Parks? How about being dropped off just a block from Carpinteria State Beach with its marvelous natural resource programs for schools? Or having a special stop planned for a visit to the inspirational Colonel Allensworth State Historic Park? Taking the train makes the trip itself part of the experience, and your students will love it. For more information, visit Amtrak's Kids 'n Trains program website.
School Group Program Evaluation
As many teachers in California are already aware, California State Parks has an active teacher survey program. In addition to surveys conducted by individual park units, a statewide survey, known as the School Group Program Evaluation, has been conducted in the first half of each year since 1998. The 2002 report on the survey program is entitled Making the Grade: An Analysis of California State Parks' School Group Program Evaluation, 1998-2002. A short update on the 2003 program is also available.
California State Parks has adopted mission statements for its interpretive and educational efforts. To view the statements, visit our Interpretation and Education Mission Statements page.