Clifton Institute To Deliver Hands-on Field Trips For Every Third Grade Class in Fauquier County

Inspiring students to become future stewards of the environment

Warrenton, Virginia (October 26, 2021) — We are pleased to announce our goal to host a field trip for every third grade class from the Fauquier County Public School System during the 2022-2023 school year.  We are especially excited about third grade classes because students at that age are both young enough to be strongly influenced by spending time outdoors and old enough to form lasting memories of those experiences. It is also the grade level at which our programs most closely align with the Virginia Science Standards of Learning. For example, the SOLs state that third grade students are expected to “demonstrate an understanding of scientific reasoning, logic, and the nature of science by planning and conducting investigations” and “investigate and understand that adaptations allow animals to satisfy life needs.” Our 900-acre property is perfectly suited for such hands-on experiences.

On average, we host 22 field trips for 1,100 students each year; by hosting all third grade classes, we will increase that to 33 field trips for 2,000 students. In order to achieve that goal, we plan to hire an Education Fellow and to provide funding for school buses to make it as easy as possible for teachers to bring their students here. We have already secured partial funding for this project and we are working to secure the rest of the funding we need. We are grateful for the financial support of our community and we are excited to see the third-grade students of Fauquier County on our property next year!

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The Clifton Institute is a Northern Virginia-based non-profit whose mission is to inspire a deeper understanding and appreciation of nature, to study the ecology of our region, to restore habitat, and to conserve native biodiversity. We provide environmental education to people of all ages, carry out ecological research, and restore habitat for native plants and animals. Our 900-acre property in central Fauquier County, which is permanently protected under a conservation easement, provides a beautiful and easily accessible environment for our programs. For more information, visit, like us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram.