Environmental Education

San Diego is home to remarkably diverse landscapes and habitat types, and our mild Mediterranean climate makes this an ideal place to recreate outdoors and connect with nature year-round. Unfortunately, not everyone in San Diego County enjoys the same access to these natural spaces.

Children who live in San Diego’s “park-poor” neighborhoods suffer physically, psychologically, and academically from a lack of access to green space. Children in these communities also miss out on the opportunity to learn about nature and experience its benefits first-hand.

Numerous studies have shown the more people understand about the environment, the more likely they are to protect it.
The goal of our education program is to ensure as many kids as possible enjoy the opportunity to learn about and personally experience our wild landscapes. This is how EDI builds equity in our communities, and supports the next generation of environmental stewards.

Curriculum-based Programming

EDI is deeply integrated into the school districts of San Diego County, where classroom teachers request our support and expertise in delivering science-based outdoor education lessons to students. We offer a suite of education programs that both align with Next Generation Science Standards and engage students in meaningful experiences in nature!

Field Trips

Our Elementary Field Trip programs align with the Next Generation Science Standards and provide hands-on activities that support classroom learning and direct connections with the land.

Field trips take place on conserved lands managed by partner agencies, including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, California Department of Wildlife, and Endangered Habitats Conservancy.

Students engage in habitat restoration projects, including planting native grasses, seed collection, and pollinator habitat restoration. Students hike on conserved lands where they learn about the diversity of plants and animals living in San Diego and how our actions can impact the land.

Field trips also give students the opportunity to visit areas of San Diego they rarely, if ever, visit, like the San Diego Bay.

We focus on real-world problems such as water pollution and climate change, and allow students to explore real-world solutions starting in their own backyards and neighborhoods. 


Education through Recreation

Through our Education through Recreation program, we are thrilled to offer the students we regularly learn and explore with, the opportunity to continue their exploration outside of school with their loved ones. These exciting Family Day events include kayaking, whale watching, hiking, camping, fishing, and more!

This program is funded by the Outdoor Equity Grants Program, created through AB 209 and administered by California State Parks, Office of Grants and Local Services.

Storybook Hike

Our Storybook Hike at Crestridge Ecological Reserve provides an outdoor adventure that focuses on family connection, literacy, health, and wellness. EDI has hand-picked nature-themed stories that will inspire those who follow the Storybook Hike! Pages of the story are posted at several stations along the trail, allowing everyone to enjoy a story as they hike and take in the nature around them. New stories will be featured periodically throughout the year so be sure to check our website and social media for updates.  Come take a hike with us!

For inquiries on our Environmental Education program, please contact Simon Breen, EDI's Education Director: Simon@earthdiscovery.org


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