2015-2016 ILACSD Education Programs

ILACSD’s education department delivers over 700 presentations annually throughout San Diego County. While we are best known for our classroom and assembly presentations, we also provide unique educational opportunities throughout the year to select schools.


America Recycles Day

America Recycles Day

America Recycles Day is a nation-wide event to educate communities and raise awareness about recycling. Each year, the County of San Diego and ILACSD choose one school and celebrate America Recycles Day through an Environmental Fair and subsequent after-school cleanup. Partner organizations and agencies in San Diego are invited to set up booths and hands-on activities to teach students about the importance of recycling and how they can make a difference in their community.  After school, students are encouraged to participate in a community cleanup and learn firsthand how their actions can make a difference.

Nearby Nature

Nearby Nature

Research is showing that children need connections with nature as part of their healthy growth and development. Through our Nearby Nature program, ILACSD hopes to reconnect students in under-served schools to the natural environment. This two-step program first introduces students to what they can find in nature and the importance of protecting these natural places, and then leads students on an educational hike through a nearby natural area. By helping students experience the nature in their own neighborhood, they can better understand and value the nature surrounding them every day.

Kids' Ocean Day

Kids’ Ocean Day

Each Spring, ILACSD partners with the California Coastal Commission to coordinate San Diego County’s Kids' Ocean Day event. This program provides interactive presentations about pollution prevention and marine ecosystems to thousands of local students. Students are then invited to participate in a field trip to the beach to take part in a cleanup event and an aerial art formation in the sand. The aerial art image helps the students send a larger message to the San Diego community that clean oceans are a vital part our livelihood and we need to do our part to protect them.
The program teaches students the dangers of pollution in our marine ecosystems and the important role they play in helping keep our beaches clean.
This video from a past ILACSD Kids' Ocean Day shows the process of creating a human aerial art piece!

2015 First-Ever Bi-National Kids' Ocean Day Cleanup

Close to 1,200 students, their teachers and volunteers from both sides of the border came together to remove harmful pieces of beach debris along Border Field State Park and Playas de Tijuana. After the cleanup, one-by-one, the students filled into the aerial art outline to form this year's cross-border aerial art image and commemorate the first-ever bi-national Kids’ Ocean Day!

2013 Ocean Day Kids' Adopt-A-Beach Cleanup

"Listen" to this! This was a BIG event; almost 1,000 San Diego Unified Elementary school students from seven title-one schools came out to the beach to participate in a cleanup and be part of an aerial art formation. On June 6th, 2013, the students descended on Crown Point Shores in Mission Bay to send a clear environmental message to the community. The students performed a beach cleanup, and then formed a giant aerial art image of a child listening to a seashell and spelling out the word "LISTEN", reminding San Diegans about the importance of listening to and living in harmony with the environment. This stunning image was captured by Niki Even, Program Director at local San Diego nonprofit organization Outside the Lens.

Kids Ocean Day 2012


2012 Ocean Day Kids' Adopt-A-Beach Cleanup

The 19th Annual Kids' Ocean Day brought 1,050 students, parents and volunteers together to send a message to the whole San Diego community to help protect our waterways and to show students that they can make a difference in helping to preserve our local environment. Students started the day by picking up trash along the beach before lining up and filing into the design that included a shield, an octopus and the message “Defend the Sea.” This stunning image was captured by Rachel Lebowitz, Digital Storytelling Director at local San Diego nonprofit organization Outside the Lens.

Kids Ocean Day 2012

2011 Ocean Day Kids’ Adopt-A-Beach Cleanup

San Diego Students continue to make a "Stand in the Sand!" It was all for the 18th annual Kids' Ocean Day. The students gathered on Crown Point Shores to clean up the beach after the busy Memorial Day weekend. Following the cleanup, ILACSD staff and volunteers led the students in an aerial art formation. They formed an image of a Mako Shark with the message "coexist," reminding us to live in harmony with the marine environment.

2010 Ocean Day Kids’ Adopt-A-Beach Cleanup

More than 1,000 students, teachers, and volunteers hit the sand to clean Crown Point Shores in Mission Bay. This years event involved students from Florence, Nubia, King-Chavez, Sunset View, Cubberly, John Muir, Crown Point, Pacific Beach, Gage, Knox, and Mueller elementary schools. After the cleanup, participants made an aerial art image of the endangered California Least Tern, with the message "Sustain Life." Congratulations!


2009 Ocean Day Kids’ Adopt-A-Beach Cleanup

The 2009 event involved 1,000 students, teachers, and volunteers who removed debris from Coronado City Beach. After completing the cleanup, participants made an aerial art formation below to spread awareness about marine debris and how it impacts wildlife.


2008 Ocean Day Kids’ Adopt-A-Beach Cleanup

Two years ago, the event involved 800 students, teachers, and volunteers who removed 132 pounds of debris from Oceanside City Beach! The image below shows the aerial art from a bird's eye view.


To learn how your school can get involved or to donate, please contact our Education Manager.


A special thanks

To the California Coastal Commission's Public Education Program. This event would not be possible without their support through the Whale Tail License Plate grant program.