Our 4th & 5th grade program, Life in Our Watershed:
Investigating Vernal Pools, integrates a 13-lesson,
standards-based science curriculum with a field trip to the
vernal pools at Mather Field. The
curriculum prepares the students for their field trip by
teaching them all about vernal pools and the plants and animals
that live in them.
Classroom preparation is the key difference between Splash field
trips and traditional field trips because the students arrive
already knowing a lot about the vernal pools. This knowledge
empowers the students and results in an exciting, interactive
field trip in which information is shared among students, guides,
The field trip is hands-on, interactive, and provides lots of
opportunities for the students to share their vernal pool
knowledge with each other, the Splash field guides, and the
parent chaperones. This integration of classroom and experiential
learning is a unique and exciting aspect of the Splash Elementary
Each class is broken into three groups of 8 to 12 students and
each group is led by a trained vernal pool guide. Half the field
trip is spent rotating through the learning centers inside the
Splash Center: the watershed station, the microscope station, and
Critterville. The other half of their field trip is spent
exploring the spectacular vernal pools scattered throughout the
grasslands at Mather Field. For more information about the timing
and content of the field trip, please click on the links below.
If you are a 4th or 5th grade teacher who will be participating
in the Splash Elementary Program this school year, this page
contains information and documents that may be useful to you.
If you have not yet been accepted into the program, please
visit Information for Prospective
If you are a teacher interested in participating in the
Elementary Program, please review the links below to determine
your eligibility, review our expectations of teachers, and sign
up for a place on the waiting list.
This is a 13-lesson environmental science curriculum about vernal
pools designed for 4th- and 5th-graders. It includes three
binders: the Teacher’s Manual, Critter Catalog, and Flower Facts.
This program is used by numerous Sacramento County school
districts and focuses on the Mather Field vernal pools in eastern
We are pleased to offer this curriculum to anyone wishing to use
it for educational purposes.
Sir Hiss-a-Lot was hatched sometime around 1993. When Sir Hiss
was a baby snake, he was captured by a boy who didn’t know that
you should never keep a wild animal as a pet. Nonetheless, the
boy took excellent care of him for about 10 years…