NGSS (Next Generation Science Standards)

To better support the Next Generation Science Standards, our programs underwent some changes for the 2017-2018 school year.  Some of the Traveling Scientist programs are more appropriate for a new grade level.  For our Field Trips, some of the stations have been changed or updated to best support these new standards.  The two links below outline these changes for our programs.


Inside the Outdoors - Restructure to Support NGSS

Traveling Scientist

Field Trips

For more information on the new standards, visit the state or national standards websites.



STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics)

Inside the Outdoors has incorporated STEM concepts into our programs. An emphasis on STEM concepts in education is being promoted at all government levels (Federal to local) and for all grades. The purpose is to increase science literacy in the general public and encourage more young people to enter STEM-related careers.
The general principles include:
  • Experience-based inquiry
  • Emphasis on design and problem-solving
  • Career opportunities in science
  • Relevance of STEM in everyday life
STEM principles support Common Core State Standards, Next Generation Science Standards, and the acquisition of 21st Century skills with an emphasis on preparing today’s students for college and future careers in a global context.
Inside the Outdoors is uniquely positioned to combine STEM-related curriculum with environmental education concepts and Service Learning to provide our students with an opportunity we call Green STEM.
Inside the Outdoors students:
  • Become “scientists” on the Field Trips
  • Learn science concepts and how they apply to their lives though hands–on activities
  • Are exposed to careers in science such as Wildlife Biologist, Ecologist or Geologist
  • Connect environmental problems and solutions to science concepts

These websites are current as of December 2016.  Inside the Outdoors does not manage these sites and is not responsible for the content on them.

STEM Resources

California Department of Education


Change the Equation 

National Science Foundation Classroom Resources

National Association of Hispanic Education, Hispanic Stem Initiative Summary 

GIS education programs from ESRI

NASA Education Programs

General Resources

21st Century Skills Framework

Activities - Creative art and science project ideas focused on families - projects and lessons from a preschool classroom - Easy crafts, games and activities for toddlers and preschoolers - Blog with art projects, games, songs and other fun things - Many creative recipes, crafts, science projects, etc. - Games, magic tricks, jokes, science, recipes, arts and crafts designed for parents - for lesson plans, art, games, video links - Simple recipes for real science, some video clips
Nat Geo Kids - Many ideas, activities, lessons, images and video clips - Great science experiments, reference information, and fun stuff
PBS Kids - Science projects sent in by kids with comments and reviews
NASA - Great resource for information, images, and lesson ideas - Science projects, experiments, and information - Science projects and lessons - Lessons, experiments, projects, facts, videos and images - Some experiments and projects, a lot of information and resources - Many great science projects and demonstrations with video clips. Also has a store for supplies.
Citizen Science Projects
Citizen Science is when science research and data is collected by non-professional scientists.  Some of these projects happen during a specific time of year, such as the Audubon's Christmas Bird Count, and others are ongoing, such as the dolphin counts at Crystal Cove State Beach.  Below are some links to help you and your school to become involved in these science projects.
Crystal Cove Alliance - Information on this project is also available at the Crystal Cove Cottages.
Thank you to our funders who have helped STEM learning with Inside the Outdoors!
US Bank