The Napa River Ecological Reserve Curriculum Guide was created to encourage the use of the Napa River Ecological Reserve as a learning laboratory for students of all ages. The 73-acre Reserve is the last sizable section of riparian vegetation in the Napa Valley and provides habitat for a diverse community of birds, butterflies, mammals and plants. Valley oaks that surrounded the native Wappo tribe and early European settlers of the Valley can still be found in the diverse habitats within the Reserve. The Reserve’s ecological and historical significance make it an ideal location for students to learn about watershed function and ecology, biodiversity, ecological restoration, the history of the people and industries of Napa Valley, and appreciation for the need to conserve natural areas.
The activities in the guide allow students to develop an understanding and appreciation for the natural environment through activities in three main categories: art, ecology, and history. The activities will give participating classes the opportunity to see, hear, feel, and appreciate the Napa River Watershed in a hands-on way that classroom lessons alone cannot provide. The activities in the guide align with established classroom curriculum standards and contain notes on how to alter the lessons for multiple grade levels. Many of the activities in this guide also contain lesson extensions that can be brought back into the classroom so that the knowledge gained while at the Reserve can continue to grow. The guide concludes with a list of volunteer opportunities, stewardship project ideas, and other local resources that can help your students become involved with natural resource appreciation and conservation.
Napa River Ecological Reserve Guide 2014 (pdf=33.2mb)