School & Group Catalog

Outdoor Science School at Hancock Field Station

Outdoor Science School
Type & Format
3 days
Grade Level
Earth + Space, Life
Spring, Autumn
Person (3 Day/2 Night)

$350 per person for a 3-day program

Fall 2022 Registration Now Available! Experience a unique, hands-on learning opportunity! OMSI operates outdoor school at two regional sites: The Coastal Discovery Center at Camp Gray and Hancock Field Station. Groups provide transportation to and from site, chaperones at a one-to-eight ratio, and lunch for the first day. OMSI provides varied curricula for grades K-12, presented by professional educators in outdoor environments, homemade meals, and comfortable accommodations for overnight groups. 

Students are led by professional OMSI educators, in groups of 15, on 5-hour Field Study lessons and 1.5-hour Interest Group activities where they investigate the natural world and inspire curiosity through chosen topics. In between, there is time for rest and relaxation in cabins, and free-play recreation time. Days are packed full, from an optional walk before breakfast to an Evening Program and campfire after dinner. Students come away with hands-on experience with the science concepts of your choice, as well as the memories of exploring with their peers and their parents in the outdoors.

Hancock Field Station, located in the Clarno Unit of the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument in central Oregon, has access to one of the world's most significant fossil sites, nearby canyons, archaeology sites, and the John Day River. In the nearby sedimentary rock formations, the fossil record unlocks the geological history and evolution of life and climate in Oregon. Juniper-sage grasslands provide excellent locations to study arid lands ecology. Clear night skies in late fall and early spring provide the opportunity for astronomy programming.


OMSI program staff will work with you to create an experience tailored to your students' interests and your teaching goals. Curriculum offerings include:

Field Studies (5 hours each full day):
Archaeology/Cultural History
Arid Lands Ecology
Ecological Mapping Techniques
Fossils in Fossil
Stream/Riparian Ecology

Off-Site Ecology Hikes:
Cove Creek Canyon
Robinson Canyon

Interest Groups (90 minutes each day):
Avian Study
Early Oregon Skills
Fossil Study
Insects And Spiders
Leave No Trace
Reptiles and Amphibians
Rocks and Minerals
Skulls, Skins and Bones
Team Challenge
Weather and Climate

Evening Programs:
Astronomy Slide Show
Bat Slide Show
Birds of Prey
Environmental Forum
Evening Walk
Hancock Trivia
Night Hike
Observational Astronomy

A minimum of 2 weeks' advance notice is required for all registration requests. If you have questions, please contact us at 503.797.4661 or



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OMSI supports educators with NGSS requirements by providing corresponding programming, opportunities, and resources for them and their students. To learn more about specific ways in which OMSI programs align with and support science standards reach out to the Sales team at 503-797-4661.