School Programs

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School Programs

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Bring your class or school group to the estuary

The Tijuana Estuary offers free visits to elementary, middle and high school groups. School visits to The Tijuana Estuary are theme-based and integrated with the California State Science Framework. We encourage school groups to visit while their classes are studying related subject matter. We have activities that can integrate art, language and social studies as well. Activities usually focus on general estuary ecology, plants and birds. Other subject areas are available upon request.

We offer guided field trips on Thursdays and Fridays. Parks Online Resources for Teachers and Student (PORTS) programs will be available to book in the Fall here.

Students and instructor working on an assignment outside of the Tijuana Estuary Visitor Center
Students and instructor working on an assignment outside of the Tijuana Estuary Visitor Center

Our Programs

M.A.R.S.H teaches basic wetland & upland ecology, and cultural history for grades 1-6.

An in-class field trip program that uses reading, writing, and science to help students explore the estuary.

The Tijuana Estuary High School Teacher’s Guide for grades 6-12, is an interdisciplinary high school curriculum designed to educate students about the valuable Tijuana River Estuary natural and cultural resources.

Additional estuarine science curriculum is available from the National Estuarine Research Reserve System and includes lesson plans for all grades that incorporate hands-on learning, experiments, fieldwork, and data explorations.

We welcome college and university groups to visit the estuary and engage in self-guided tours or guided trips with a reserve staff member.

Many of our school programs require facilitating teachers to attend a training session prior to their trip to the estuary. Trainings are designed to guide teachers through the curriculum and help them apply the curriculum to their specific class of students.

Plan your school program

We are excited to welcome your school group to the Tijuana Estuary! Please be aware of the following program guidelines before planning your visit.

  • Guided and non-guided tour opportunities available
  • Visits normally last about 2.5 hours
  • Maximum of 35 students per group
  • At least three chaperones required per group
  • Tours are available in English and Spanish
  • Teachers must attend a one-time orientation or training to participate in our programs
  • The estuary is open for school visits Monday-Friday; morning trips are encouraged
  • Reservations are first-come, first-served and require at least 2 weeks advance notice