Field trips are integral to the learning experience of Marin Primary & Middle School students. The resources available beyond our campus provide opportunities that extend and enrich every area of our school’s program. Beginning with preschool students taking walks to the local fire station or nearby parks, our students experience the rich and varied natural habitats, cultural and scientific resources, farms and performance spaces of the Bay Area. These diverse experiences help learning come to life and constitute an essential part of the MP&MS integrated program.
Primary and middle school classes may be found hiking in nearby Baltimore Canyon to study natural ecosystems, touring the local recycling center, or traveling to visit museums and other cultural resources around the greater Bay Area. From farms and tide pools in West Marin to the Chabot Science Center in Oakland, to a science lab at UC Davis or music and theater performances, teachers plan experiences for our students that extend and deepen learning.
Beginning in second grade, overnight trips are also a part of our overall program. These trips are linked to the curriculum of each grade level, providing opportunities for students to extend their learning across all academic areas. Our students also develop a deeper sense of community with their classmates while working and learning together in outdoor environments. Environmental stewardship is taught as students travel from coast to mountains, and experience learning in forests and near rivers and streams, among other natural areas.
Overnight Field Trips in Middle School
Fifth and Sixth Grade Trip to Pt. Reyes; Clem Miller Environmental Education Center
Early each fall our fifth and sixth grade students spend four days and three nights in the heart of the Point Reyes National Seashore area. The students engage in team-building experiences while learning about the unique characteristics of this natural area. Through this process our students build relationships that create a strong foundation that supports the fifth grade students’ transition into middle school, while also providing leadership opportunities for sixth grade students.
Fifth Grade Trip to Yosemite
In early spring, fifth grade students and their teachers spend three nights and four days in Yosemite National Park. The program is led by NatureBridge naturalists and includes studies of the geography, animals, plants and natural and cultural history of the area. Hiking from the valley floor to the top of waterfalls to experience the scenic wonder of this timeless area, fifth grade students work together while learning in this rich environment.
Sixth Grade Trip to Mendocino
Our sixth grade students’ spring trip is to the Mendocino Woodlands Camp. Mendocino Woodlands Camp is nestled in seven hundred acres of redwood trees, ferns and glades along both sides of the Little North Fork and the Big River, near the coastal village of Mendocino. Parents, teachers and students work together to plan and manage this trip. From hiking to the world-famous Pygmy Forest, tide pooling, playing student-made dulcimers or preparing meals together, this trip is grounded in community building and experiential learning.
Seventh Grade Trip to El Capitan Canyon
Seventh grade students travel by bus to El Capitan Canyon to experience and learn about the various environments of the Santa Barbara mountains and seashore area. Over the course of five days, our students learn outdoor skills, discover the unique natural and human history of the area, develop collaboration skills while working cooperatively to complete tasks, and enhance their leadership abilities. The program is run by Naturalists at Large, an organization that emphasizes student participation in the process of learning and living together.
Eighth Grade Trip to Olympic National Park in Washington
The eighth grade trip is a culminating experience and celebration of the students’ years together at MP&MS. They travel by air to Seattle, by ferry across the Puget Sound, and by bus to the center of the Olympic Peninsula. In this spectacular outdoor setting, on the shores of Lake – they canoe, hike, travel to the coastal rainforest, and learn about another unique natural environment with naturalists from NatureBridge, the same program used by our second and fifth grade students in two other national park settings.