Homeschool Science at Tacoma Nature Center

Homeschool students explore science through hands-on experiments, activities and inquiry-based learning.

2019-20 programs:

  • TNC member registration for the full school year begins in mid-July. Exact date will be posted here by July.
  • Non-member registration for the full school year begins in early August. Exact date will be posted here by July.
  • Please note that registration for individual classes that still have room does not open until late August.
  • Registration is in person or over the phone only – no online registration available for these programs.

General Information

  • Due to increasing demand for limited programming, homeschool class registration will now require an application for the full school year and will prioritize Tacoma Nature Center members and previous participation as follows:
    • Applications for the full school year for ALL participants will be accepted beginning on June 21. There is no advantage given to early submissions.
    • All TNC member applications are due by July 3 at 4 pm for consideration in the prioritized registration process.
    • TNC Member applications will be processed beginning on July 8 with notifications made as registration occurs. Priority will be given to TNC members with previous TNC homeschool participation.
    • All other applications for the full school year are due by August 3 at 4 pm.
    • Applications will be processed beginning on August 5 with priority given to TNC members who missed the previous deadline and prior participants.
    • Payment information will be required with the application but will not be processed until we register – participants can choose to pay for the full school year or give us a credit/debit card to use for monthly payments.
    • Due to high demand and class dynamics, we will require students who are registering for the whole series to stick to one time slot.

Please note that registration for individual classes that still have room will open on August 19. No individual class registrations will be taken until then.

Topics are repeated during the month, so select the class appropriate for your child’s knowledge and abilities.

If you have questions about program content or age appropriateness, please contact Lauren Bentson at or (253) 404-3930 x14.

Interested in more homeschool opportunities? Check out the Fort Nisqually programs.

Withdrawals with less than 24 hours notice are subject to a non-refund policy. Credit for future registrations within Metro Parks Tacoma may be given.

Homeschool Adventures

Homeschool Outdoor Adventure Trips
Ages 10 – 15, $25 per person per trip

These trips are geared toward students enrolled in homeschool science at the Tacoma Nature Center. The trips are for students to get to know one another, build leadership skills and experience new outdoor activities.

Trips may include hiking, kayaking, mountain biking etc. and will occur once a month on Wednesdays.

Times, locations, and fees will vary depending on the activity. Each trip will leave from the Tacoma Nature Center.

Transportation and all equipment provided. Pre-registration required.

Budding Scientists

Ages 5-7
$11.00/participant, $9.90/TNC member student

Young children begin science and nature exploration through games, stories, and outdoor activities. Students should have a beginning reading level and the ability to add and subtract.

Students need to be registered in one session so choose the time that best suits your family for the full year.

Elementary Homeschool Science

Ages 8-10
$13.00/student, $11.70/TNC member student

Minimum academic requirements:
3rd-5th grade reading level and ability to multiply and divide numbers.

Intermediate Homeschool Science

Ages 10-12
$13.00/student, $11.70/TNC member student

Minimum academic requirements:
5th grade reading level and ability to add & subtract fractions.

Upper Level Homeschool Science

Ages 12-15
$31.50/student, $30.00/TNC member student

Thursday Class 1:00-3:00pm
Friday Lab 1:00-4:00pm

Older homeschool students will continue their science studies with challenging and engaging experiments and activities. To participate in this class, students should be able to calculate averages, percentages and solve simple equations.

Upper level includes 5 instructional hours over two days including a 2 hour class session on Thursday and a 3 hour laboratory session on Friday. Students get greater in-depth investigation of the monthly topic, practice in problem solving and research skills and hands-on experimentation.

Scientific concepts will build from the beginning of the Thursday class through the end of the Friday lab, so for this reason attendance in the Thursday class session is required for participation in the Friday lab. Neither date is optional.

Class Info & Application Form