Our Place Summer School

Los Angeles

Called, “Our Place,” our summer program is designed for exploration and for encouraging our students to find “their place” in the LA “biome.”

Each day, students explore local and historical areas and ecosystems in LA. Our previous outdoor classrooms include:   Elysian Park & LA River, Glendale Narrows Seasonal Recreation Area; Griffith Park and the Old Zoo; El Pueblo Historical Monument, Calle Olvera and the LA State Historic Park; Millard Canyon; Malibu, Point Dume and their tide pools. 

On their hikes, students learn the biocultural history, origins and indigenous people of the areas; study native ecological communities, identify flora and fauna, visit learning centers and learn about art, history and activism.

Registration

Our Place Summer School 2020 will be conducted Monday-Friday, 8:30am-3pm (after-care can be arranged until 6PM depending on availability) during these weeks:

  • June 15-19
  • June 22-26 
  • June 29-July 3
  • July 6-10
  • July 13-17
  • July 20-24
  • July 27-31
  • August 3-7
  • August 10-14
  • August 17-21

Class Description

Additional Information

Although Los Angeles is the second-largest city in the United States, our special city is proximal to so many spectacular outdoor classrooms. Some of these include Echo Park Lake, Elysian Park, San Gabriel Mountains, Santa Monica Mountains, the Los Angeles River Watershed, and many more!

Ages: 6 – 14 (14+ please inquire – teen programs are available)

  • Cost for Session: $500.00
  • Classes begin at 8:30 AM, and pick up is 3:00 PM (6.5 hrs.)
  • Drop off and Pick Up at Specified Locations 
  • Transportation provided by families (Covid-19 Protocols)

Our Place Summer School 2020 Pricing:

Our Early Bird pricing & registration is now sold out. Due to increased demand, we are opening our next tier of pricing earlier than March 1st. Please note our new pricing tiers below. 

March Registration: $425

April – June 15 Registration: $450

In-session Registration (if available): $500

Biocitizen LA provides experiential learning via Field Environmental Philosophy (FEP). FEP is simply the practice of inquiry-based learning while we walk! Classes are designed to increase student’s perceptual abilities; stimulate their critical thinking skills; inspire their creative imaginations, and counteract “nature deficit disorder.” Through active physical and mental engagement with “our place,” they gain a deep & lasting appreciation of LA—and of themselves.

Wonder | Connection | Stewardship

Biocitizen LA’s Our Place Summer School provides your student with the opportunity to experience the environment in playful, mindful, AND wild ways, while exploring the meanings and systems that formed the places we inhabit each day.

Our Place is designed to “unplug” your child by bringing them into direct contact with “Our Place,” the natural and urban environment of the Los Angeles River Basin Biome.

Our daily explorations brings students into direct contact with LA’s myriad of wild and urban habitats and ecosystems. Our classes are active, immersive and reflective: We hike, climb, swim, share, and always take time to simply sit and observe the world around us.

Each week long session is self-contained with five highly active days in which we roam multiple outdoor classrooms all over the Los Angeles area, and beyond; on a treasure hunt in pursuit of natural and cultural signs and stories…an active and immersive adventure! Our students walk 1.5 – 4 miles per day, and will need to carry their own lunch and water.

Daily Itinerary

Here’s what a typical day in the field looks like:

8:15 – 8:30AMStudent Drop-off

8:30 – 8:45 AM –  Morning Circle: Intro circle, name games, plan for the day

8:45 – 9:55 AM –  Morning Activity: Hiking, exploring, connecting

10:00 – 10:15 AM – Snack break

10:15 – 12:30 PM – Activity Continued: Usually this is more hiking and exploring nature. We’ll dive into discussions about whatever our topic or theme for the day is.

12:30 – 1:00 PM – Lunch break: We often sit in the grass and eat our lunch and chill out for a little while. 

1:00 – 1:40 PMGame/Craft: We’ll dive into a daily game, or a nature craft for the day.

1:45 – 2:15 PM – Nature Journaling:  Kids love drawing and writing about their day in their journal. 

2:15 – 3:10 PMHike back to our drop off point.

3:10 – 3:15 PM –  Water and Snack Break

3:15 – 3:30 PMClosing Circle and Share highlights from the day.

Class Goals

Students will develop deeper awareness of the biodiversity of our local wilderness and urban areas, including the desert and coastal habitats, and how healthy biodiversity impacts us all. Students will also be encouraged to develop a deeper sense of their own resilience and endurance as we will be covering a good amount of trail (or pavement) each day.

Our classes are designed to counteract “nature deficit disorder.” Slowing down and being mindful while we walk, increases the students’ perceptual abilities, while group generated inquiry, activates their critical thinking skills. Our structured yet flexible daily curricula is designed to inspire them to go from being passive receivers of “reality” to being active participants in, and shapers of it.

Summer FAQ's

Q1: Can we require all students to be COVID tested prior to camp sessions?

Unfortunately, that is impossible, but please see our following section on being “Covid Cool”

Q2: Hand washing protocols?

Before and after meals we’ll have a handwashing station set up for students.

Otherwise, we will be using hand sanitizer frequently throughout the day

Q3: Will we be required to bring our own masks or is Biocitizen providing masks?

Please bring your own facial protective wear. Including bandanas, buffs, or a mask.

Q4: What’s the best way to refer a friend or get on the waitlist? Is the website up to date on availability?

Click on the REGISTER NOW button, and then select the week you are interested in enrolling in. Once you make your selection, you will see orange text pop up below indicating how many spaces are available. 

Our site is indeed up-to-date, and when you select the week you would like to register, the selection window will let you know how many spaces are available. 

Q5: Will we know the pickup and dropoff location?

Each Friday before the start of your student’s session, our lead teacher of the group will send out an email with GPS links to all the pick-up and drop-off locations. 

Q6: Will aftercare be available?

As of yet, we don’t have any requests for aftercare. However, if there is serious demand we will address it based on teacher availability. 

Q7: Are Camelbacks cool?

You better believe it! 1.5 – 3-liter bladders are great to throw in the backpack and can help make hydrating fun!

Here are a couple of recommendations – DO NOT GET A SUPER CHEAP ONE, it will leak all over your student’s belongings and then everyone will be sad. 🙁

Q8: Will they be in the water?

We will have at least one day a week where our students will get to play around in the water. Although serious swimming will have to wait for weekend activities with your family.

Q9: How about siblings who are in the group, can we have social distancing exceptions?

In an effort to role model best practices for the group, we expect all students to observe our social distancing protocol. Siblings can squish, wrestle, crowd each other or get back to regular fun when they get home 😉

Q10: Will the program be too strict that students won’t have an enjoyable experience?

Absolutely not!

This is going to be the best summer to date!

We’ve trained our staff, by incorporating deeper programming, diverse activities, awesome nature crafts, new games, and tons of classic Biocitizen fun!  

If we were certain we could bring fun, we wouldn’t be running programs this summer! 

Although we cannot require testing, we can vehemently implore our community to do the following:

1. Get a free COVID-19 Test by the Friday before session start. (At the latest)

2. Quarantine (actually) over the weekend.

3. Check for fever or any symptoms and if any are present DO NOT send your student. 

Follow these three simple steps, and you can help ensure we all have a safe and healthy summer!

Let’s all do our part to be “Covid-Cool” this summer!  

Merit and Need Based Financial Aid

We are able to offer scholarships to students interested in joining us either based on merit or need. Scholarships cover only a portion of the camp cost.

If you would like to apply for a scholarship click here.

If you have questions, please contact us!

Join The Waitlist Please list the following so that we can properly place your child quickly if a spot becomes available. Thanks for your interest! - Your name, email and phone number - Child's name and age - Specific friend requests (do you have a friend in the group?)