Welcome to Project Crystal!


Three students gather around a research plot at the Project Crystal research site, recording their observations on a clipboard.

During this virtual environmental education program, fifth grade scientists are invited to take part in ecological research in Crystal Cove State Park’s Moro Canyon!

As young scientists help Crystal Cove Conservancy, Crystal Cove State Park, and UC Irvine study the best way to help native seedlings grow, they’ll learn about concepts like plant ecology, the water cycle, and how we can use science ideas to protect our wild places.

This program is aligned with Next Generation Science Standards for fifth grade. The curriculum includes six learning modules, each with 2-3 hours of flexible activities to incorporate into your online or hybrid classroom.  The program also includes four optional Virtual Field Trips (also known as videoconferencing sessions) so that your students can connect with Crystal Cove Conservancy staff from the field in Moro Canyon.

 How to Join

Project Crystal is free for everyone! If you are a teacher or homeschool educator and would like to join Project Crystal for the 2020-2021 school year, please complete this survey and let us know.

If you have any questions about the program, feel free to contact Kaitlin Magliano, Education Coordinator, by emailing kaitlin@crystalcove.org.

Teacher Professional Development

We highly recommend that all teachers, educators, and parents who will be facilitating Project Crystal attend two online professional development sessions.  The “Welcome to Project Crystal” training gives an introduction to the Project Crystal research project and curriculum.  The “Project Crystal Data Analysis” training gives you a crash course in supporting your scientists in thinking about how best to represent data through statistics, making graphs, and using their graphs as evidence to support a recommendation.

Upcoming Training Dates:

If you cannot attend a training, we will post recordings afterwards to watch at your leisure!

Project Crystal Curriculum

Teacher & Educator Resources


Module 1: Exploring Moro Canyon

Module 1 Lesson Guide

  • Explore Part 1: Video Field Trip – Moro Canyon’s Changing Landscape
    • For school groups, book this program for your class here!
    • For homeschool groups, join us for our next public livestream!


Module 2: Introduction to Our Research Project

Module 2 Lesson Guide (coming soon!)

  • Explore Part 1: Video Field Trip – Introduction to Our Research Project & Modeling
    • For school groups, book this program for your class here!
    • For homeschool groups, join us for our next public livestream!

Module 3: Digging Deeper (optional)

Coming Soon!

Module 4: Making Our Hypothesis

Coming Soon!

Module 5: Collecting Our Data

Coming Soon!

Module 6: Analyzing Our Data

Coming Soon!

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