Elementary School Programs
Brought right to your campus
The perfect blend of education and fun
Fun, physically-active programs use hands-on learning to connect caves with your curriculum. During our standards-aligned program, your students will learn important content in many subjects, from science and math to social studies, PE, and art. Your students will see real-world examples of why every school subject is so important, and they’ll come away with a renewed understanding of why school matters. For weeks after the program, your students will tell you how glad they are that you brought CaveSim to school for them.
a cave at my school?
How does it work?
Our expert staff bring a 26′ trailer to your school with a fascinating cave inside. Computer scoring makes the cave extra fun – as students explore, they get a score based on how careful they are to not touch the stalactites. The cave trailer is just one of numerous stations. We also set up an impressive vertical caving tower, a cave rescue stretcher, bat biology lessons, and other hands-on activities. Your students rotate through these stations, learning and having fun at each activity. We work with you to make sure that our program covers the content that you care most about.
Recent elementary school programs
Browse the tabs below to get answers to all of your questions.
Here are some of the other schools that we’ve worked with around the country:
It’s easy to have CaveSim come to your school. Just pick a location on campus that you think will work and tell us where to set up. Use the info below to help you pick a good location.
Check out our calendar to see when we’re available, then contact us to book your program.
Typically 30-200 students per day. For over 200 students, we do multi-day programs.
We usually teach full-day programs. Students participate in groups (typically 1-3 classes at a time). Each group participates for about 60-90 minutes, depending on your learning and schedule needs. For smaller schools, we can do as much as three hours of teaching with one group.
Our program is best suited for 2nd grade and up. We have worked with kids as young as preK, but they don’t get as much out of the program.
Yes. Many schools sign up for non-adjacent grades, like 3rd and 5th. This allows us to come back each year with something new and exciting for students.
We usually teach the entire program outside. In bad weather, many of our activities can be set up inside. The cave always stays in the trailer, and we put up tents to shelter the students. In very severe weather (heavy rain, high winds), we will close the cave and do all of our activities inside. The cave does have heat and AC. See our setup info sheet for more details.
Yes, please provide parent volunteers and/or school support staff to help with some of the CaveSim activities. We recommend that you provide 3-4 parent volunteers at any given time, or 2-3 school support staff. Classroom teachers may help in place of volunteers/support staff if needed, but we do need adults to help run some activities while at least one teacher is available to assist with classroom management.
Yes, they can. We include many activities, and there is something for everyone. While the cave is not wheelchair accessible, numerous students who use wheelchairs have explored CaveSim by getting out of their wheelchairs and crawling through. Some students may have more difficulty avoiding cave formations, and our only requirement is that each student understand their goal of not touching the formations (for the safety of the system and students). Students of any ability level who are unable to understand the careful-caving goal may participate in our other activities. CaveSim has night-vision cameras which allow us to check on students as they explore. We also have five access points to allow us to let participants out of the trailer if needed.
We teach Challenge By Choice, which means that each student is encouraged to set goals for themselves and see if they can attain their goals. We encourage all students to try the cave, even if it means just putting on a helmet and going in a few feet. We include many activities for students to try. Participation in all activities is an individual decision.
Sí. El inventor de CaveSim habla español. No es fluido en español, pero sabe suficientes palabras para instruir un programa en Español. Y él sabe algunas palabras específicas de las cuevas, por ejemplo “estalactita”, “estalagmita”, y “este es un videojuego, y el objectivo es no tocar las estalactitas o estalagmitas.” ¡Y escribió esto sin un diccionario! Nosotros objetivo es incluir todos los estudiantes, sin importar sus antecedentes.
Yes, it has both, and they work quite well.
Click the next tab (“Ask us a question”) and ask away! We’re always here to help.
Different schools fund our program using different approaches, so we’ve compiled a list of ideas and resources to help you.
Choose your focus area (optional)
Most schools choose our standard program, which covers many different subjects rather than diving deep into one subject. However, if you’re looking to ensure that specific topics or standards are addressed, we can easily do that. We’ll bring you a program that’s closely aligned with what you’re currently teaching. Below are just a few examples of our focused programs. When you book, just tell us whether you’d like a standard program that covers a bit of each subject, or a program focused on a specific topic.
Caves are about much more than rock. They’re filled with life, from bats and salamanders to invertebrates and extremophiles. Using a real bat skeleton, real guano, and many fake critters inside the cave trailer, we teach students about these important species, the adaptations they use to live in caves, and the cave food web.
Cave minerals are all around us, in walls, toothpaste, and food. Caves help us by holding the water we drink. They even hold clues about ancient climates, helping us understand our current climate. CaveSim staff teach exciting lessons about geology, landforms, climate, and conservation. Hands-on lessons teach students about the chemistry of caves.
There’s no better way to learn the physics of simple machines than being lifted up a 12 foot tower in a harness. Students learn about friction, forces, fractions, and even trigonometry. We also offer exciting chemistry demos with working carbide lamps that teach students about exothermic reactions and states of matter.
We created CaveSim, including the software and electronics, and we love sharing the fun of engineering. Students go hands-on with cave rescue phones to learn about electromagnetics, and we teach waves and energy with homemade waterproof speakers. We also offer STEM labs for various ability levels (scroll down for more info).
The oldest art is found in caves, making caves an ideal place to study the origins of art. While exploring the mobile cave, students look for cave paintings and pottery. After exiting, students are asked to interpret what they saw. Students also learn about art preservation, and can even do hands-on art activities.
Physical education & Teamwork
PE teachers love CaveSim because we connect PE and other subjects. Students learn core content while being physically active, and kids who have trouble focusing often excel during CaveSim programs. Students practice teamwork and coordinated motion with a cave rescue stretcher, and a squeezebox allows students to practice moving their bodies in different ways.
Add a lab to your program (optional)
Standard programs can be enhanced by adding our labs, which provide an in-depth educational experience in a specific subject, like biology or engineering. We never use kits because our goal is to teach students that engineering and science are accessible to them without the use of pre-prepared materials. We emphasize conservation by using recycled materials in our engineering labs.