School Kids In The Park (SKIP)

Fostering the Next Generation of Conservationists!


The Friends organization offers dozens of grants as part of the School Kids in the Park program. This has enabled thousands of youth and their educators to establish a personal connection with their Virgin Islands National Park on an educational field trip! 

The Friends also partners with local afterschool and summer camp providers to offer additional outdoor education experiences, including Learn to Swim and Summer Science Camp.

SKIP encourages educators to utilize the Park as a “living classroom” and works to remove barriers that may limit students' participation by covering transportation and food costs. Following best practices in STEM education, SKIP is structured to offer grade-specific interactive learning experiences that build cognitive development, critical thinking, math and science skills. In addition, the program and its model are proven to create empathy for plant and animal life and promote environmental stewardship.

Cultural Classrooms
Introduce your students to one or more of the many talented and passionate people who work to preserve and protect the natural and cultural resources of the Virgin Islands.
Image
Yes! I would like to get my School Kids in the Park!

Schedule your classroom’s field trip directly with VINP Ranger Laurel Brannick at Laurel_Brannick@nps.gov

To learn more about scholarship and grant opportunities for youth and their educators contact the Friends at info@friendsvinp.org or (340) 779-4940.
Image
Mangrove and Seashore Walk
Location: Leinster Bay
Length: 1 1/2 hours
Explore our coastal habitats: the rocky seashore, mangroves, seagrass beds, and coral reefs. Through the walk, they will learn about the many plants and animals that live in these ecosystems. Intricate relationships that exist between the different habitats will be discussed. Students need to wear shoes suitable for walking in the water.
Dry Tropical Forest Hike
Location: Lind Point
Length: 3 hours
This hike starts behind the Cruz Bay Visitor Center. It passes through the dry forest environment where students will see a variety of plants, animals, and insects. There is also an overlook of Cruz Bay and St Thomas on the trail, which eventually ends at Honeymoon beach. Wear walking shoes and bring plenty of water.
Reef Bay Hike
Location: Reef Bay Trail
Length: 4 hours 
This hike takes students down a 3-mile trail into the Reef Bay Valley while learning of key events in VI history. Reef Bay has remains from the Danish Sugar Plantations and the Taino Rock Carvings. Students need to wear good hiking shoes and bring lunch and drinks. This activity involves taxi and boat transportation. Archeological dig with Archeology Intern can be included.
Nature Walk
Location: Cinnamon Bay Nature Loop
Length: 1 hour
Learn about the natural history of the environment. Beginning and ending at the Danish Sugar Plantation ruins this 1/2 mile loop passes through a moist tropical forest dominated by bay rum trees.
19th Century History Plantation
Location: Annaberg Sugar Factory
Length: 2 hours
Visit the Danish sugar factory. The ruins include a windmill, horse mill, boiling house, enslaved laborers cabins, and garden. On certain days cultural demonstrators are on site.
Underwater Snorkel Tour
Location: Trunk Bay
Length: 1 1/2 Hours
Learn about the coral reefs, the status of the reefs, reef fish, and marine invertebrates. Advanced snorkelers can learn about and conduct a fish survey by using “Reef” survey kits. Masks and snorkels along with flotation gear can be provided by the Park.
Bird Walk
Location: Francis Bay
Length: 1 1/2 hours
Take a bird walk around Francis Bay’s salt pond to learn about our aviary friends. Learn about bird calls, their habitats and migration routes. Other wildlife sometimes seen on the trail include crabs, donkeys, iguanas, and deer.
Plants and Traditions
Location: Cinnamon Bay Trail
Length: 2 hours
Hike along with Delroy “Ital” Anthony to learn about the traditional uses of local plants.
Island Tour
Location: Taxi Tour
Length: 2 hours
Take a tour of St. John from Cruz Bay along the Northshore by taxi and bring history to life for your students. Learn about key events and visit historic locations around the island
Book Events

custom template in-process