OSEP Classes

Our summer Outdoor Science Education Program consists of a variety of weeklong classes offered June through August for students in grades 1-8, on topics ranging from photography and art, to natural history. Courses are taught by experienced outdoor educators and take place at either Valentine Camp or the Sierra Nevada Aquatic Research Lab (SNARL). Students who enroll should have a strong interest in science, love being in the outdoors, and be willing to participate in all aspects of these academic classes. Students are expected to behave in an appropriate, respectful, and safe manner. In an effort to allow as many students to enjoy all of our camps, priority will be given to students who have not previously attended specific camps. All classes are geared to next year's grade level. 

To register for a class:

1. Choose your class

2. Click on register and fill in the required information

3. You will see a message that you have successfully registered 

4. In order to complete your registration proceed to Buy Now button

5. Your class will show up in the shopping cart on the lower right

6. You must register for each class individually but you can hold them in your shopping cart and pay all at once

7. You child will not be confirmed in a class until you receive an email for carole.lester@ucsb.edu

If you have any problems or concerns please call/text or email Carole at 760-914-3722 or carole.lester@ucsb.edu

If you prefer to register by mail you can also download a schedule and registration form pdf here - Summer Programs PDF

Capturing Science through a Lens | June 11 to June 15 | Grade(s): 6-8 | Valentine Camp
Students will use digital photography to capture the essence of the flora and fauna of Valentine Reserve. Technology, art and science will be combined in this photography class. All students will need to bring a digital camera. Computer experience preferred. CLASS FULL. REGISTER FOR WAIT LIST REGISTER
Hurray for Habitats B | June 18 to June 22 | Grade(s): 1-2 | SNARL
Owls, mule deer,rabbits,coyotes, bugs and bees all make their homes at SNARL. We will observe animals or evidence of animals that live in the high desert and/or riparian zones of the Eastern Sierra. As young scientists, we will record our findings and observations on our Habitat Boards. If you like to hike, explore, play games, and do outdoor science activities, then come join this expedition REGISTER
Painting Nature | June 18 to June 22 | Grade(s): 5-6 | Valentine Camp
Learn basic acrylic painting surrounded by the beauty of Valentine Reserve. Through a series of fun and easy projects and exercises the students will work up to creating a beautiful painting. They will also have lots of time to explore Valentine and hear stories of famous artists. REGISTER
Science through Art | June 18 to June 22 | Grade(s): 5-7 | Valentine Camp
This course will explore science through the eyes of the artist. Looking at broad landscapes and delicate wildflowers, students will use a variety of media to enhance their observational skills while pursuing their artistic talent. CLASS FULL. REGISTER FOR WAITLIST. REGISTER
Sifting through Science | June 18 to June 22 | Grade(s): 1 | Valentine Camp
Young children are natural scientists. This week our little scientists will use their senses as they eagerly explore and investigate the environment at Valentine through experiments, stories, games, and nature walks. We will use magnets, sand, water, dirt, rocks, and sift our way trough science. REGISTER
History of the Valentine Reserve I | June 21 | Grade(s): | Valentine Camp
The area known as the Valentine Reserve has had many uses over the years. Join us on a tour of the reserve to learn about the area’s first visitors, how the inhabitants have changed over a century or so and how the land is being used today. From Native Americans to gold speculators to wealthy Angelenos and now educators and scientists, this land has served a wide variety of needs. REGISTER
The Geology of Valentine Reserve I | June 22 | Grade(s): | Valentine Camp
The geography of Valentine Reserve was shaped over the millennia by the geologic forces of time. Mammoth Mountain volcano, the glaciers of the Tioga glacial epic and the explosions of the Inyo Craters have all left their mark at Valentine. During this moderately strenuous hike, you will learn how the rocks of Valentine arrived at their destination. Bring water, hat and sunscreen. REGISTER
Involving Dissolving | June 25 to June 29 | Grade(s): 3-4 | Valentine Camp
Come see what happens when we mix powders with liquids, play with evaporation, and create crystallized masterpieces. Will everything we mix dissolve? We'll use resources at Valentine, read stories, and create chemical reactions involving dissolving during this week of scientific exploration. Please note, non-toxic materials will be used. REGISTER
The Nature of Art | June 25 to June 29 | Grade(s): 4-6 | SNARL
Explore the intersection of art and nature in this week-long class. The class is designed to make a strong connection with our natural environment while experimenting with a variety of media throughout the week. Enjoy art, hikes, play, and an appreciation for the environment woven together in a fun week of creative exploration. REGISTER
History of the Valentine Reserve II | June 28 | Grade(s): | Valentine Camp
The area known as the Valentine Reserve has had many uses over the years. Join us on a tour of the reserve to learn about the area’s first visitors, how the inhabitants have changed over a century or so and how the land is being used today. From Native Americans to gold speculators to wealthy Angelenos and now educators and scientists, this land has served a wide variety of needs. REGISTER
Wildflowers of Valentine Reserve I | June 29 | Grade(s): | Valentine Camp
Valentine Reserve changes color throughout the wildflower season. This hike will allow you to see what is blooming early in the season. Depending on the year, you can expect to see arrays of forget-me-nots, Mariposa lilies, and violets which will be in seed later in the summer. The hike is moderately strenuous, with a 500’ elevation gain. Bring water, hat and sunscreen. REGISTER
Beautiful Bats | July 02 to July 06 | Grade(s): 2-3 | Valentine Camp
Bats are familiar to nearly everyone, yet most people have never seen one up close. Are bats dangerous? Do bats get tangled in your hair? Folktale and fantasy are all part of people's ideas about bats. In this class you will learn the truth about bats is more astonishing than any of the stories about them. (Please note that there is no class on July 4). REGISTER
Hurray for Habitats | July 02 to July 06 | Grade(s): 2-3 | SNARL
Owls, mule deer, rabbits, coyotes and bugs all make their homes at SNARL. We will observe animals or evidence of animals that live in the high desert and/or riparian zones of the Eastern Sierra. As young scientists, we will record our findings and observations on our Habitat Boards. If you like to hike, explore, play games, and do outdoor science activities, then come join this expedition. (Please note that there is no class on July 4). REGISTER
The Geology of Valentine Reserve II | July 05 | Grade(s): | Valentine Camp
The geography of Valentine Reserve was shaped over the millennia by the geologic forces of time. Mammoth Mountain volcano, the glaciers of the Tioga glacial epic and the explosions of the Inyo Craters have all left their mark at Valentine. During this moderately strenuous hike, you will learn how the rocks of Valentine arrived at their destination. Bring water, hat and sunscreen. REGISTER
Black Bears I | July 06 | Grade(s): | Valentine Camp
While walking through Black Bear forest habitat you will see bear scratched trees, a bear den and occasionally bear tracks. Learn how bears survive in the forest, and how Mammoth Lakes is managing their bear population. Children welcome. REGISTER
Sundays at the Valentine Reserve I | July 08 | Grade(s): | Valentine Camp
Have you ever wondered about the mysterious Valentine Reserve. Where is it? What is it? Come with us on the general tour of the Reserve and learn a little bit about the history, flora, fauna and what makes the Reserve so special. This tour will be relaxed introduction to the best kept secret in Mammoth! The hike is moderately strenuous, with a 500’ elevation gain. Bring water, hat, and sunscreen. REGISTER
Beautiful Bats | July 09 to July 13 | Grade(s): 2-3 | Valentine Camp
Bats are familiar to nearly everyone, yet most people have never seen one up close. Are bats dangerous? Do bats get tangled in your hair? Folktale and fantasy are all part of people's ideas about bats. In this class you will learn the truth about bats is more astonishing than any of the stories about them. CLASS IS FULL. REGISTER FOR WAIT LIST. REGISTER
The Nature of Art | July 09 to July 13 | Grade(s): 6-8 | Valentine Camp
Explore the intersection of art and nature in this week-long class. The class is designed to make a strong connection with our natural environment while experimenting with a variety of media throughout the week. Enjoy art, hikes, play, and an appreciation for the environment woven together in a fun week of creative exploration. REGISTER
Wildflowers of Valentine Reserve II | July 09 | Grade(s): | Valentine Camp
Valentine Reserve changes color throughout the wildflower season. This hike will allow you to see what is blooming early in the season. Depending on the year, you can expect to see arrays of forget-me-nots, Mariposa lilies, and violets which will be in seed later in the summer. The hike is moderately strenuous, with a 500’ elevation gain. Bring water, hat and sunscreen. REGISTER
The Geology of Valentine Reserve III | July 10 | Grade(s): | Valentine Camp
The geography of Valentine Reserve was shaped over the millennia by the geologic forces of time. Mammoth Mountain volcano, the glaciers of the Tioga glacial epic and the explosions of the Inyo Craters have all left their mark at Valentine. During this moderately strenuous hike, you will learn how the rocks of Valentine arrived at their destination. Bring water, hat and sunscreen. REGISTER
Black Bears II | July 12 | Grade(s): | Valentine Camp
While walking through Black Bear forest habitat you will see bear scratched trees, a bear den and occasionally bear tracks. Learn how bears survive in the forest, and how Mammoth Lakes is managing their bear population. Children welcome. REGISTER
Sundays at the Valentine Reserve II | July 15 | Grade(s): | Valentine Camp
Have you ever wondered about the mysterious Valentine Reserve. Where is it? What is it? Come with us on the general tour of the Reserve and learn a little bit about the history, flora, fauna and what makes the Reserve so special. This tour will be relaxed introduction to the best kept secret in Mammoth! The hike is moderately strenuous, with a 500’ elevation gain. Bring water, hat, and sunscreen. REGISTER
Involving Dissolving | July 16 to July 20 | Grade(s): 3-4 | Valentine Camp
Come see what happens when we mix powders with liquids, play with evaporation, and create crystallized masterpieces. Will everything we mix dissolve? We'll use resources at Valentine, read stories, and create chemical reactions involving dissolving during this week of scientific exploration. Please note, non-toxic materials will be used. CLASS IS FULL. REGISTER FOR WAITLIST. REGISTER
Over the Meadow | July 16 to July 20 | Grade(s): 1 | Valentine Camp
Over the Meadow will introduce the student to four of the five invertebrates: mammals, birds, fish, and amphibians. We will examine invertebrates as well, comparing insects and spiders. Every day will include a hike, a game, and an art project Students should bring a snack and lunch. CLASS IS FULL. REGISTER FOR WAITLIST. REGISTER
Sundays at the Valentine Reserve III | July 22 | Grade(s): | Valentine Camp
Have you ever wondered about the mysterious Valentine Reserve. Where is it? What is it? Come with us on the general tour of the Reserve and learn a little bit about the history, flora, fauna and what makes the Reserve so special. This tour will be relaxed introduction to the best kept secret in Mammoth! The hike is moderately strenuous, with a 500’ elevation gain. Bring water, hat, and sunscreen. REGISTER
Wild Island Adventure | July 23 to July 27 | Grade(s): 4-5 | SNARL
Get ready for a week on the Wild Islands at SNARL. From the water we drink to the oceans that circle the Earth, liquids are everywhere.We will explore the properties of water and the wetlands surrounding the islands by observing the creatures that live there and discovering how liquids do what they do. Come prepared to get wild and wet as you learn all about our most precious resources. CLASS IS FULL. REGISTER FOR WAITLIST. REGISTER
Wildflowers of Valentine Reserve III | July 25 | Grade(s): | Valentine Camp
Valentine Reserve changes color throughout the wildflower season. This hike will allow you to see what is blooming early in the season. Depending on the year, you can expect to see arrays of forget-me-nots, Mariposa lilies, and violets which will be in seed later in the summer. The hike is moderately strenuous, with a 500’ elevation gain. Bring water, hat and sunscreen. REGISTER
Sundays at the Valentine Reserve IV | July 29 | Grade(s): | Valentine Camp
Have you ever wondered about the mysterious Valentine Reserve. Where is it? What is it? Come with us on the general tour of the Reserve and learn a little bit about the history, flora, fauna and what makes the Reserve so special. This tour will be relaxed introduction to the best kept secret in Mammoth! The hike is moderately strenuous, with a 500’ elevation gain. Bring water, hat, and sunscreen. REGISTER