Welcome to the South Coast Science Project

Please click here to view the flyer and registration link to this summer's institute on Earth and Space Science! As of 6-17-18 we have a few openings due to cancellations - reserve your spot today!

The South Coast Science Project (SCSP) provides professional development for elementary teachers in Santa Barbara, Ventura, and surrounding counties. Due to the wide area that we serve our program is divided into two subprograms to support the needs of regional teachers and districts. The two professional development opportunities we offer are Summer Institutes and SciTrek.  Although teachers can participate in either of the subprograms, the programs are coherently designed to meet the goals of SCSP and the California Subject Matter Project.

The main goal of this website is to provide an archive of the main lesson plans and materials we present at our summer institutes. The website will archive at least one full lesson per grade level K-6 for Life, Earth, and Physical Science, as well as Engineering. For additional lesson ideas, materials, pedagogy, NGSS implentation tips, and resources, we encourage teachers to attend our summer institutes. 


Summer Institutes

Each year SCSP hosts a weeklong summer institute training open to elementary teachers in the Santa Barbara, Ventura, and surrounding areas. An informational flyer and invitation to register are sent to teachers via e-mail through our mailing list each Spring as well to the local offices of education. These institutes are designed and presented by the co-directors working as a team with content specialists and K-12 teacher leaders. Each summer the institutes focuses on a specific science content area, and include:

  • strengthening the teacher's depth of understanding of the science content
  • implementing the new Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
  • teaching science through hands-on and inquiry-based lessons
  • incorporating language arts techniques to build science literacy among all students including ELLs
  • utilizing and providing NGSS-aligned science labs and activities for teachers to use with their students
  • collaborating with other teachers

The 2017 summer institute was held in Carpinteria, CA, July 31st through August 4th. The content focus was Physical Science: Matter and its Interactions (PS1) and Engineering (ETS1). In 2018 the content focus will be Earth and Space Science, and will take place at Peadbody Charter Elementary in Santa Barbara from July 30th to August 3rd.  

Another key goal of the Summer Institutes is to build teacher leaders. This leadership team is made up of approximately ten classroom teachers which meet several times each spring to develop Conceptual Flow Diagrams which guide the activities for the Summer Institute. 

Explore the rest of this website to obtain information about past and future Summer Institutes, as well as lesson plans, teacher leader information, announcements, and more. 



SciTrek is an outreach program run out of the UCSB chemistry department that focuses on allowing 2nd-8th grade students to experience science first hand by designing, carrying out, and presenting scientific experiments. SciTrek brings highly-trained UCSB undergraduate and graduate students into the classroom to assist in these modules and interact with the younger students as positive role models in science. In addition, SciTrek works with classroom teachers to learn to run long-term inquiry activities. For more information on the program, how to get involved, and to get on the mailing list visit the SciTrek website.


Additional Links:


CSMP logo

UCSB logo

RORD logo

CUSD logo