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Fieldtrip Information

Field Trips for School Groups

Santa Cruz Mission State Historic Park

Our Mission Day Program takes your students from the life of the Ohlone people in their village to their life in the Santa Cruz Mission with the Spanish.  We compare and contrast the two cultures and discuss what happened when they came together in the context of the Mission System.

The day includes a mixture of information, demonstration and hands-on activities.  It is geared towards 4th graders, and meets California Curriculum standards for 4th grade Mission Studies.  In many cases, the program can be tailored to your group’s grade level and curriculum.

The time is from 10:00 A.M.–2:00 P.M. The program works best with groups of 10 – 24.  However, we may be able to accommodate larger groups by dividing the class during the craft rotation and building tour activities (see Mission Day Schedule).  Parent chaperones play a key role in facilitating the craft rotations. 

We request a donation of 1 to 5 dollars per student. We apologize for this increase, but it may make the difference in whether we are able to remain open in the coming year.

Components of the program include:
* Introduction:  Overview of the agenda. Introduction to the themes of the day.

* Touch Basket:  Students are introduced to Ohlone culture through an hands-on activity involving reproduction artifacts.

* End of the Old Way:  Story about the coming of the Spanish and the founding of the Missions, and the choices available to Ohlone villagers.

* Building Tour:  Guided tour of the Adobe building museum including a diorama of Mission Hill in the early 1800s, a re-creation of neophyte living quarters, and an exploration of various work performed by Native Americans in the mission.

* Lunch:  Students eat.  Parent chaperones are trained to lead the Craft Rotation during lunch.  Chaperones may be trained in the morning during the first part of the program if staffing allows.

* Craft Rotation:  Students break into small groups for their “work assignments”.  They will be able to take home their creations. Examples include adobe bricks, tortillas, and candles.

* Conclusion:  Summary and farewells.

Groups bring lunch from home or school and eat in our outdoor patio.  Restrooms and water fountain are on site. Groups are welcome to arrive early and eat a snack or use restrooms.  The museum, grounds and restroom facilities are wheelchair accessible.  We will gladly accommodate your group in the Park Store if you wish. (Proceeds from Park Store sales support educational programs such as this one.)  Most of our day is spent outdoors. Students should dress in layers.

Other Programs:
If this program does not fit your needs, we may be able to offer an alternative.  Please call us with any questions at (831) 425-5849.

Sponsored by California State Parks and Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks