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Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Doheny State Beach Junior Ranger Program

Last week my daughters and I drove to Doheny State Beach for four days in the morning for the
Junior Ranger Program with Ranger Vicki. It was so much fun! We met our homeschooling friends there and we enjoyed learning, playing and having fun in the sand, sun and waves with friends.

We had finished the Ocean Commotion monthly unit with Mother Goose Time, so the girls were ready to go out and see the ocean for themselves. We had learned about shark eggs, kelp and ocean creature and seascapes during our studies. It was so much fun for the girls to explore the ocean with their friends under the guidance of Ranger Vicki.

Junior Ranger Program Agenda

Day 1, Monday

Ranger Vicki lead the program we attended. She is a great teacher, and the kids really enjoyed her. On the first day the kids got an overview of types of creatures in the ocean. She had photographs and real creatures for the kids to look at, such as shark eggs, kelp and other sea creatures. She gave each child a Junior Ranger Logbook and Junior Ranger badge! The kids loved it.

After they finish 10 visits they can earn a patch, which they can put on a scouting uniform. My daughter is in American Heritage Girls, so after she finishes 10 visits, she can put her patch on the back of her uniform.

Day 2, Tuesday

 The children studied the ocean animals. We headed out to the beach with kiddy microscopes. The children loved saving a real dragonfly and bee that had been injured.

They also loved seeing the swallow flying around us. They make their mud nests under the bridge we had walked on to get there.

The children also saw lots of other sea creatures. Kelp had been washed up onto the beach everywhere. I'm looking forward to having the kids get into their Nature Detectives Mother Goose Time theme for next month. I think we can refer to this visit during our studies at home.

Ranger Vicki shows the children the creatures by the ocean....

Day 3, Wednesday

We got to see the visitor's center on the third day. Here are pics from our visit. We met Ken, the man who caught the fish in the visitor's center! He just happened to be there when we were. He said they go out deep in the ocean to get the fish.



 There is a butterfly garden outside, too.

Day 4, Arts and Crafts

On the fourth day the kids created sea turtles. We discussed all that we had learned during the week.

When the girls got home we talked about our trip and they worked on their Junior Ranger Logbooks. Here is a pic of the Junior Ranger Pledge page.

They have a Junior Lifeguard program for older kids, too. Our little ones aren't ready for that yet. :)

I got in trouble for letting her onto the board, so I wouldn't recommend it.

Helpful Kid Travel Tips for the Doheny State Beach Junior Ranger Program and Beach Visit

  • Parking is usually $15 dollars! People with RV's and campers can camp in the parking lot next to the beach. This would be a fun program for your kids if you are camping there. If you attend the Junior Ranger Program with Ranger Vicki, you do not have to pay for parking, yeah! I'm not sure if that applies to campers, too.
  • You will need to park in the second parking lot to your right after you pass the visitor's center, where everyone else has to pay for parking. :) After you park, you will need to cross a bridge to get to the Camp Fire area, where they hold the program. If you have little ones that run away from you it might be a good idea to bring an athletic stroller, since you will have to walk across a bridge with a sidewalk and cars.
  • After you park keep your lunch, bathing suits and towels in the car. After the program you will enjoy lunch on the beach and the kids can play in the water.
  • Be careful, because when we were there my older daughter and her friends were using their bodies to ride the waves and the lifeguard told them to stop. I guess he was concerned about the 4 foot drop, undertow, surfers, or maybe the rocks. I'm not really sure what he was so freaked out about. I think next time I will bring her a boogie/body board and wetsuit (to the knees). That way she and her friends can ride the waves in a safer way. Her friend did bring a wet suit and boogie board, which was fun for him. The surfers hang out on the bigger waves behind the kids on the boogie boards.

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