Homeschool Outdoor Program Bay Area, CA
The Trackers Homeschool Outdoor Program is comprised of outdoor skills and artisan crafts for homeschooled and independent study students. You drop off your child and we guide them into a fantastic world of adventure and ancient skills.
Outdoor Learning Year-Round
Our courses are specifically designed to meet the unique needs of homeschool families. Trackers programs are conducted almost entirely outdoors, fostering active engagement with the lessons and the land. For some specific projects in Berkeley we may also utilize our historic Trackers Guild Hall for fine craftwork projects and more. All students learn skills from all four Trackers guilds:
Rangers Guild Outdoor Survival, Animal Tracking and The Curriculum of Shadows
Wilders Guild Wild Plants, Homesteading and The Way of the Wilder: Regenerative Ecological Relationships
Mariners Guild Fishing and Water Ecology
Artisans Guild Theater & Storytelling, Fine Craft Work and Leadership
Monday Preschool Rovers Forest School
We believe that our youngest students are capable of significantly more than they are often given credit for. For our 4 and 5-year-olds we have crafted a careful curriculum that balances outdoor exploration and natural skills. Learn more on our Preschool page.
Locations and Times for 2015-2016 School Year
Berkeley/Oakland Preschool Monday Ages 4-5 9:30 AM – 1:30 PM Ages 4-5
Fremont/Hayward Wednesay 9:30 AM – 1:30 PM Ages 6-14
Berkeley/Oakland Thursday 9:00 AM – 3:15 PM Ages 6-16
Marin Thursday 9:00 AM – 3:15 PM Ages 6-14
Livermore Thursday 9:30 AM – 1:30 PM: Ages 6-14
Registration and Enrollment Information
At this time we are not able to offer any additional trial days this spring. We will begin enrolling trial days for fall on August 15, on a space-available basis.
Enrollment for new students for the 2015-2016 school year will begin in approximately late May. If you would like to be notified when enrollment is open, please submit a request via our Wait List form. Families on our interest list will receive priority in registration. A non-refundable $75 deposit will be required to hold your space at the time of registration.
Register for Homeschool Outdoor Program
Fall Trial Day Enrollment Begins 8/15
Age 6 - 16 $50 Download Price Sheet
Trial Day Available for registration August 15, 2015
Age 4 - 5 Download Price Sheet
Berkeley - Monday 9:30 AM - 1:30 PM 28 sessions, September - May with holiday breaks
Age 6-14 Download Price Sheet
Berkeley - Thursday 9:00 AM - 3:15 PM 29 sessions, September - May with holiday breaks
Age 6 - 14 Download Price Sheet
Fremont/Hayward - Wednesdays 9:30 AM - 1:30 PM 29 sessions, September - May with holiday breaks
Age 6-14 Download Price Sheet
Marin - Thursdays 9:00 AM - 3:15 PM 29 sessions, September - May with holiday breaks
Ages 6-14 Download Price Sheet
Livermore - Thursdays 9:30 AM - 1:30 PM 29 sessions, September - May with holiday breaks
2015-2016 Homeschool Registration Information
Once registration is open, to secure your space for Fall 2015 we will require a non-refundable $75 deposit per child, per enrolled day. In early September, all families will enroll in our monthly payment plan. Your tuition is divided into nine equal payments (less your deposit). Payments are automatically debited once monthly from September – May. Please note that registrations are for a full year; however, we do allow for mid-season withdrawals per our cancellation policy (see below). If you are unable to provide your deposit now due to financial hardship, please contact us directly so we may make alternate arrangements.
Please note that our groups are based on childrens' age as of September 1, 2015, and this rule applies for the entirety of our 2015-2016 school year. Children must have turned 4 before this cut-off to join our preschool homeschool program and 6 to join our other homeschool programs. We must receive at least one weeks notice to schedule any new students for our homeschool program.
Tuition Fees and Dates
Please note that our program begins on Monday September 14th, 2015 and ends on Friday May 27, 2016. There is no Trackers Homeschool during holiday breaks.
Trackers Homeschool will not meet the following dates:
- November 23 - November 27: Thanksgiving Holiday
- December 14 - January 1: Winter Break
- January 4 - January 8: Trackers Staff Winter Break Holiday Week
- Berkeley Preschool Only: January 18: Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
- February 15 - 19: February Break Camps
- Berkeley Preschool and Homeschool, Fremont, and Livermore March 28 - April 1: Spring Break Camps (Marin still in session)
- Marin April 14: Spring Break Camps for Marin schools (All other homeschool in session)
- April 25 - April 29: Trackers Staff Development Week
Camps are available for Winter Break, February Break, Spring Break programs. From August onwards, please visit our calendar to see all of our program dates.
For Livermore and Fremont Homeschool ONLY: Special Fire & Tools classes meet the following dates (requires pre-registration):
- Fremont: 10/7, 12/2, 2/3, 3/23, and 5/4
- Livermore: 10/8, 12/3, 2/4, 3/24, and 5/5
Cancellation and Withdrawal Policy
Because of our small group sizes, we are greatly impacted by mid-year cancellations and withdrawals. Nevertheless, we understand that the needs of families may change during the year. Our cancellation policy is as follows:
- We request a two-week courtesy notice prior to withdrawals.
- For all withdrawals, a $75 withdrawal fee will apply.
- After the withdrawal fee has been subtracted, we will refund any pre-paid tuition prorated for time not attended.
Potential Guild Activities
Rangers Guild The Rangers Guild are scouts of the forest. Campers train stealth, tracking and wilderness survival skills. If you ever loved the books My Side of the Mountain or Lord of the Rings the Rangers Guild is where you want to be.
Rangers may build a shelter, learn to carve wood, safely make fire with no matches, craft simple bows or train outdoor fitness arts through fun stealth games. Rangers are also master naturalists, they know the language and sign of all birds, beasts and plants that live in wild.
Wilders Guild Named in honor of Laura Ingalls Wilder, the Wilders Guild offers homesteading activities. Campers could make cheese from farm fresh goats milk to bring home or press apples in the cider press while dancing to fine fiddle music.
You may find a Wilder starting seedlings for planting in family gardens or even working on fiber arts projects. They make pickles and preserves, help cook nourishing meals, weave baskets, spin, knit, use plant dyes and other natural materials for coloring fabric and sew their own clothing.
Mariners Guild The Mariners Guild trains the skills of the water and sea. Mariners may research ocean life and create aquariums and terrariums to learn about aquatic creatures. They could tie knots and even partake in artistic knot work.
Kids may even get an opportunity to help out building a canoe or other traditional skin on frame boat in the wood shop. Most importantly, the Mariners Guild goes fishing and kayaking! While they may not guarantee a catch, campers always have a good time sitting by the shore and casting. With the Mariners Guild you can always count on them to come home with a safe adventure on the water and a tall tale about the "big one that got away."
Artisans Guild The Artisans Guild encompasses a diverse range of craft and skills. They are storytellers and crafts people. Instructors trained in the dramatic arts teach theater improv games that build confidence, creativity and teamwork.
Artisans also offer incredible craft activities: from safe and successful metal working projects for younger kids to more challenging blacksmithing techniques for older students. Every week we offer free choice woodworking projects, plus campers have the opportunity to express their own story through painting and other art media.