Homeschool Programs


A new season of our Outdoor Environmental Science Program (OESP) for homeschool students has begun! Below you will find a listing of 2015-2016 themes, as well as the monthly class listings.


OESP classes are offered to members at a discounted rate of $10/class and are $15/class for non-members. For more information on membership, visit our membership page. In addition to the class

discount you will receive our monthly newsletter, announcements of special events and volunteer opportunities, and discounts at local nurseries. Your membership donation is also 100% tax-deductible and comes with a free annual subscription to Better Homes and Gardens.


But most of all, you will know that you are supporting a valuable community asset that will be enjoyed today and for generations to come.


Please contact us with any questions at 408-298-7657 or e-mail


2015-2016 Themes

(tentative; series have 4 weeks unless otherwise noted)

September: Recycling (4 weeks)
October: Solar Series (4 weeks)
November: Drought & Watersheds (3 weeks)
December: Soil & Composting (3 weeks)
January: Physics of Play (4 weeks)
February: Flower Power (4 weeks)
March: Birds (5 weeks)
April: Life cycles (5 weeks)
May: Maker May (4 weeks)


All classes are:

Held Thursdays from 1:30-3:00pm

Drop-off classes

$10 per student per class for members, $15 per student per class for non-members

For 5 to 12 year-olds only


Welcome Ocean Grove families! GRPC is a registered vendor for Ocean Grove Charter School. If you’re interested in using Ocean Grove funds, please email us with the attendee names and class dates and request a purchase order from your ES. You do not need to complete the sign up form below.


Cancellation Policy:

In order to receive a full refund, cancellations must be made 24 hours prior to the start of each class or series. If cancellation occurs after that time, no refund will be given. In the event that a class or series is cancelled by Guadalupe River Park Conservancy, a full refund will be issued to registered participants.


Science of Composting

Join us as we explore the incredible world of worms and discover their important role in nature. Students will learn about compost and about the role of decomposers in a food web while playing decomposition tag. Next they will have a hands-on, close-up peek into the worm bin ecosystem when harvesting castings for their very own plant. These activities will help warm students up to the idea of composting, worm education and teach students basic principles of soil science.


Warming up to Worms

December 3rd

Join us for some worm education! We’ll brainstorm questions about worms and investigate the answers to the students questions through direct observation of worms. Next we’ll use our 3-D model and our interactive SMART board to show you the worms external and internal anatomy. We’ll sing the Worm Song and go outside to explore the park with hand trowels to locate worms in their natural habitat.

Compost Exploration

December 10th

Let’s dig into a functioning wiggly worm bin to learn about compost, biodegradable versus non-biodegradable materials and the worm lifecycle! We’ll separate worm castings that we can mix with soil so we can plant our own seed to take home. After we categorize some of the worms friend’s that live in the compost bin, we’ll play decomposition tag to learn about the cycle of life and role of decomposers in a food web.

Wiggling Worms

December 17th

We’re here to learn and have a good time too! For the final week we’re going to have students make a worm trail painting and their very own worm using model magic. We’re also going to incorporate math to measure the length of worms and end the day with a dirt pudding snack. Yum! Oh yeah, and we’ll exercise that off by doing the Worm Dance!


Homeschool Programs Sign-up Form


Sign Up Today! To add more than one class, select class and number of students and hit “Sign Up.” Then from the cart page hit “Continue Shopping” to come back here and add more. You can also just sign up for the whole series!

# of Students:
Names — Please indicate the names and ages, separated by a comma, of attendees. (This field is required!)
(This field is required!) I, the
undersigned, do hereby give my full consent for the above named
person(s) to participate in Guadalupe River Park Conservancy’s
Outdoor Environmental Science Program for Homeschool Students. I
agree to hold harmless the City of San Jose and the Guadalupe River
Park Conservancy and its officers, employees, volunteers and agents.
Should any accident occur requiring medical care for my child, I give
full consent to the providing of such care by a licensed physician.
Further, I hereby grant full permission to any and all foregoing use
of photographs, videotape, motion pictures, recordings and any other
records of these events for education and public relation purposes. I
have also read and understand the cancellation and refund policy
should I need to cancel my registration for any class in the Outdoor
Environmental Science Program for Homeschool Students.
(This field is required!) I am aware that this is a drop-off program.
Questions/Comments — Use the field below to leave any questions or comments you may have.

If this is your child’s first class at GRPC, please provide the following additional information. Otherwise, please scroll to the bottom and select Sign Up.

Emergency contact name and phone number
Allergies, Medications, or Special Needs
Primary care physician name and phone number


A unique setting…
The Guadalupe River Park & Gardens is an education destination like no other. A natural oasis located in the heart of downtown San Jose, the Guadalupe River Park & Gardens features 254 acres of park that include the Heritage Rose Garden, the Historic Orchard, a community garden, and 2.6 miles of trail that runs adjacent to the Guadalupe River. The GRPG provides a natural outdoor laboratory for science experiments and offers a creative and dynamic atmosphere for learning.A customizable education…
The Outdoor Environmental Science Program’s core curriculum covers a wide variety of current environmental science topics. Each class covers a unique theme within the environmental sciences, but your child can sign up for an individual class depending on his or her interests, come to several classes to cover a unit, or attend all the classes to build an interdisciplinary understanding of nature and science.A learning adventure…
The Guadalupe River Park Conservancy’s classes are unique, interactive adventures – children won’t learn science by listening to lectures, but will learn through activity-oriented lessons, science experiments, and scientific observations out in the park. Your child will be challenged, but will move, talk, think and play to learn. 

A healthier community…
More and more studies are indicating that spending time outdoors is vital to children’s academic development and health. Spending time in nature allows children to develop a connection with their surrounding community and become early stewards of the environment.


An ongoing interest…
When outdoors, children can see science playing out before their very eyes, develop powerful observational skills, and are exposed to the environmental sciences, an up-and-coming field worldwide. If your child’s interest is kindled by any or all of the OESP class topics, you can find more educational resources about that topic by clicking on the links that follow each class description, so you can be an active partner as your child explores their new favorite environmental science subject.

Resource Guides from the Past

Animals and Habitats

Food Systems


Math in NatureOhlone

Water for Life


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