Hands-On Learning

By Savannah Lira, Program and Communications Associate

When one donor came to us wanting to find a way to help children have fun, little did we know that it would result in one of our most robust and popular teacher grant programs. Over 100 Excursion Grants have been given this school year to public elementary schools in San Mateo and Alameda Counties.

The Excursion Grant Program, funded by The Geballe Family, provides grants of up to $1,000 for teachers to take their students on field trips. For many teachers, these grants allow them to teach beyond the restrictions of the classroom. For many students, these field trips mark the first time they are visiting a particular place, such as the beach, a museum, or San Francisco.

The Adelante Spanish Immersion School applied for a grant this spring to take their second grade students to the Elkus Ranch, a hands-on Environmental Learning center in Half Moon Bay.

They reported back to PVF that “the excursion was a tremendous success!” The students partook in numerous activities at the ranch. They interacted with the farm animals, learning about different breeds, predator/prey relationships and the conversion of wool into clothing.

They discussed plant life cycles and environmental health in the greenhouse, with each child taking home their own small plant to care for. The excursion even turned lunch into a learning opportunity, teaching the students about recycling and stewardship by sorting their trash into compost, recycle and trash bins.

“We are incredibly grateful that our students had the opportunity to interact with nature and learn about the concepts that we discussed in the classroom leading up to the trip. Due to the expense of transportation and admission to the ranch, this field trip would not have been possible without your support.”

We are proud to support students’ learning and have a hand in providing them with these important experiences. Funding for the Excursion Grant program is still available!

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