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Education Program overview

Birding Classes

Outdoor Adventures Program

Teacher Resources

Nature Discovery Kits

Audubon Naturalist Program

Junior Naturalist Program

Nature Day Camps

Group Tours

Seasons of Nature

Bat Walks


Our Education Program

School Bus Pond Water Lesson Group Mural
Unloading students Lesson on Pond Water Art Meets Science - Making a Group Mural
Sea and Sage Audubon seeks to protect birds and their habitats through conservation, science and education. We provide outstanding environmental programs such as Audubon Outdoor Adventures science program for 4th -6th grade classes, Nature Day Camps, Bat Walks, Community Tours, Monthly Wildlife Walks, Art Meets Science, and more at the San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary in Irvine. Come join us this year and learn more about the natural world which surrounds us.
ART MEETS SCIENCE PROGRAM: Discontinued as of 2016. For questions about the program, contact Trude Hurd at .
AUDUBON NATURALIST PROGRAM: Each year, our volunteer naturalists share their love of nature with school children at the San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary. With enthusiasm, knowledge and dedication, they help the children and their teachers understand the importance of wetlands to both wildlife and people. These volunteers help Sea & Sage to achieve its environmental education goals. Many naturalists are retired teachers or principals. Some have been involved with boy scouts or girl scouts. Others work part-time and take two days off a month to lead tours. A few volunteer with other groups such as The Nature Conservancy, Upper Newport Bay, and Bower's Museum. Many have taken Sylvia Gallagher's birding skills workshops. They are people just like you. No matter what their background, they all share certain traits. Most importantly, they believe that we should share our love of nature and pass it on to the next generation. If you believe in this and have some experience with children, now is the time to step forward. We offer monthly one-day orientation workshops for potential volunteers. For more information or to sign up for an orientation workshop, contact Trude Hurd. The workshops which run from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in the Education Center (otherwise known as the Gray House) will share important information and techniques about leading the Outdoor Adventures science program for school children. New recruits will then view and assist on tours with experienced naturalists.

Educating the next generation about nature is vital. Please join our naturalist team in our important mission. Contact Trude Hurd, Project Director of Education, by phone at 949-261-7964 or by e-mail at . We hope you will join the Audubon Naturalists program.
BIRDING CLASSES: These classes are for adults and mature teenagers who may also enroll with their parents. Sea and Sage's popular Birding Skills Workshops are conducted by Sylvia Gallagher who has been teaching birding for over thirty years. Each workshop meets once a week for three hours. The number of weeks varies with the material to be covered. Usually there are accompanying field trips, too. In order to accommodate all who want to sign up, multiple sections are offered.

Sylvia has prepared comprehensive sets of worksheets which accompany slides or sound clips. These worksheets call your attention to important identification features of the birds and also convey other useful information about each species — behavior, habitat, etc. Each week, we fill in the worksheets for a group of new birds and view a set of practice slides, or listen to a set of practice sounds covering the previous week's birds.
COMMUNITY TOURS: Scout troops and others will learn bird identification, bird migration and the importance of wetlands while observing wild birds and mounted bird specimens at the San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary. The program includes a naturalist-led, one-hour tour of the trails, use of binoculars, and a copy of our 28 page illustrated field guide "Birds of San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary" for each participant. Advance reservations are required.
JUNIOR NATURALIST PROGRAM: The Junior Naturalist Program was established in 2001 in response to teenagers who had attended Advanced Camp and wanted continuing activities during the rest of the year.  The purpose is to provide enriched nature experiences, foster leadership skills, and provide social contacts with other teens with similar interests in the outdoors.  The program which is coordinated by Gail Richards, is under the direction of Trude Hurd, Project Director of Marsh Education.
MONTHLY WILDLIFE WALKS: Join us at 9:00 a.m. on the 1st Saturday morning of each month for an easy hour and a half wildlife walk to witness the varied interactions among plants, insects, birds, and wildlife at the San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary in Irvine (near the I-405). The walks are for everyone, young and old alike, and they're free!
NATURE DAY CAMP PROGRAM: Sea and Sage Audubon day camps provide children with hands-on experiences with nature through fun outdoor activities in the beautiful setting of freshwater ponds and trails at the San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary in Irvine. We have FLEDGLING CAMP for 7-8 year olds, MARSH BIRD CAMP for 9-12 year olds, COASTAL BIRDS CAMP for 11 years & older who have attended Marsh Bird Camp, and ADVANCED BIRD CAMP for those who are 11 years & older who have attended Marsh Bird Camp. These camps are very popular and fill up quickly; camp dates for the coming year are posted on this webpage in early January.
NATURE DISCOVERY KITS FOR LOAN: Sea & Sage Audubon is a non-profit environmental organization dedicated to conservation, education and research of native birds and their habitat. Thanks to initial funding from the Beckman Foundation, we are pleased to loan Nature Discovery Kits to Orange County educators at no cost. These kits are designed to supplement science presentations and allow access to materials not often available to educators. We hope that you and your students gain a greater appreciation of Orange County's wildlife by using these kits. We have kits on: Bats, Owls, Songbird Nests, Butterflies & Moths, and Reptiles & Amphibians.
OUTDOOR ADVENTURES PROGRAM: This is a hands-on science program for 4th - 6th grade school classes. Developed in 1992, our outdoor discovery program has received high praise from local educations, and is used as a national model of excellence by the National Audubon Society. The 2 1/4 hour interactive program is designed for 4th, 5th, and 6th grade classes, and is offered on Tuesday and Thursday mornings from 9:30 to 11:45 AM. The program fee of $5 per student includes a copy of Birds of the San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary for each student, plus the loan of our teacher Field Trip Curriculum Kit.
POLLINATORS GARDEN: Our Pollinators' Garden at the San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary in Irvine opened June 2016. Our education staff have been working hard to create a beautiful demonstration garden of southern California native plants that attract hummingbirds and solitary native bees.
Information Sheet about the Garden
Plant List for the Pollinators Garden
SPONSOR A SCHOOL BUS! - so Santa Ana school children can explore the wetlands. With rising transportation costs, many schools are cutting science field trips. Outdoor experiences are important if school children are to understand the importance of wildlife and native habitats and how to protect them.
SUMMER BAT WALKS: Each summer, we hold our popular Bat Walks at the San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary in Irvine. Summer Bat walks are a special opportunity for you to visit the sanctuary after hours as we search for live flying bats feeding at the marsh.
TEACHER RESOURCES: This resource page for teachers includes information on Environmental Educational Opportunities, the Outdoor Adventures Program, and our great Nature Discovery Kits which may be checked out.







updated 4/21/17

Sea & Sage Audubon Society
PO Box 5447 • Irvine, CA 92616 • 949-261-7963