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Virtual Classes

Experience our most popular standards-aligned school programs in this pre-recorded format that will enhance your lessons and student objectives. Includes opportunities for hands-on activities with material recommendations. Classes can be navigated for either individual or group work.

Now Offering:

Rockin’ Out with Fossils: Part 1

(Recommended for grades 4+)
What is a fossil? How do fossils form? Can fossils be found in San Diego? How do paleontologists know what ancient organisms looked like? Where do fossils go once they have been discovered? Uncover the answer to these questions and more in this three-part video series.

Theme(s): Change over time, paleontology, fossils, geology
Standard: 4-ESS1-1. Identify evidence from patterns in rock formations and fossils in rock layers to support an explanation for changes in a landscape over time.

This virtual class pairs well with the Fossil Mysteries virtual field trip. For supplementary materials, you can find lesson plans for Fossil Mysteries and other exhibitions here.

Lesson: Amazing Arthropods

(recommended for grades K+)
Arthropods are interdependent on all life and serve an important role on Earth.

Are you studying insects? Insects are part of a larger group of animals called arthropods. Learn all about what makes an arthropod, their four categories, amazing adaptations, and why they are so important. This interactive virtual class includes opportunities for movement, questions, a trivia game, and a photo gallery featuring amazing arthropods that can be found right here in southern California.

Time: 20 minutes with bonus arthropod gallery at the end
Theme(s): Arthropod characteristics, adaptations, and roles in the environment
Standard: Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems; Biological Evolution: Unity and Diversity

This virtual class pairs well with the virtual Living Lab virtual field trip and teacher guides. And enjoy these additional activities that complement this virtual lesson.

Special thanks to Dr. Michael Wall and Pamela Horsley.

Lesson: Native Land, Native People

(recommended for grades 3+)
San Diego is often called America’s finest city. Indeed, its weather is beautiful, there is fantastic entertainment, and it is a melting pot of culture. From the coast to the desert, it is also home to a fascinating variety of plants and animals. But today we are faced with issues such as biodiversity loss, pollution, and climate change. Before there were roads winding through the mountains and boardwalks jutting into the Pacific, San Diego County looked quite different.

This lesson explores the deep connection the Kumeyaay People—our region’s first inhabitants—had with nature. Students will discover how the beliefs and cultural practices of Kumeyaay ancestors allowed them to thrive in the natural world while also preserving and protecting it. How can your students apply this to the way we live today?

Time: 25 minutes
Theme(s): Kumeyaay history and culture; regional history; human impacts, cause and effect; environmental stewardship
Standard: Social Studies, Science, ELA

This virtual class pairs well with the virtual Coast to Cactus virtual field trip and teacher guides. And enjoy these additonal activities that complement this virtual lesson.

Native Land, Native People Glossary (PDF)
Create a Story Jar (PDF)
Make a Coiled Pot with Salt Dough (PDF)

Special thanks to the Barona Museum and Cultural Center and the San Diego Zooarchaeology Lab for their support with developing these lessons.