• Sunrise at the Cholla Cactus Garden

    Joshua Tree

    National Park California

There are park alerts in effect.
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  • Cottonwood Trails Closed

    Trail access remains closed to Cottonwood Spring Oasis, Lost Palms Oasis, and Mastodon Peak. More »

  • Pinto Basin Road Under Construction; Expect travel delays up to 30-minutes

    The ongoing construction project to improve Pinto Basin Road will impact travel between the northern portion of the park and the Cottonwood/I-10 area. Please plan accordingly. The project is expected to be completed in August 2014. More »

  • Deteriorating conditions of Black Rock Canyon Road

    The road leading to Black Rock campground has deep potholes, is deeply rutted, and can be difficult to negotiate, especially in large vehicles. Please drive with caution.

MDD Content Standards

Content Standards for California Public Schools

Grade 3 Life Sciences: 3. Adaptations in physical structure or behavior may improve an organism’s chance for survival. As a basis for understanding this concept, students know: a. plants and animals have structures that serve different functions in growth, survival, and reproduction. b. examples of diverse life forms in different environments, such as oceans, deserts, tundra, forests, grasslands, and wetlands.

Grade 4 Life Sciences: 3. Living organisms depend on one another and on their environment for survival. As a basis for understanding this concept, students know: b. for any particular environment, some kinds of plants and animals survive well, some survive less well, and some cannot survive at all.

Grade 5 Life Sciences: : 2. Plants and animals have structures for respiration, digestion, waste disposal, and transport of materials. As a basis for understanding this concept, students know: a. many multicellular organisms have specialized structures to support the transport of materials.

Grade 6 Ecology (Life Science):5. Organisms in ecosystems exchange energy and nutrients among themselves and with the environment. As a basis for understanding this concept, students know: d. different kinds of organisms may play similar ecological roles in similar biomes. e. the number and types of organisms an ecosystem can support depends on the resources available and abiotic factors, such as quantity of light and water, range of temperatures, and soil composition.

History and
Social Science

Grade 3 Continuity and Change: Students in grade three learn more about our connections to the past and the ways in which particularly local, but also regional and national, government and traditions have developed and left their marks on current society, providing common memories. Emphasis is on the physical and cultural landscape of California, including the study of American Indians, the subsequent arrival of immigrants and the impact they have had in forming the character of our contemporary society. 3.1 Students describe the physical and human geography and use maps, tables, graphs, photographs, and charts to organize information about people, places, and environments in a spatial context. 1. Identify geographical features in their local region (e.g., deserts, mountains, valleys, hills, coastal areas, oceans, lakes). 2. Trace the ways in which people have used the resources of the local region and modified the physical environment (e.g., a dam constructed upstream changed a river or coastline). 3.2 Students describe the American Indian nations in their local region long ago and in the recent past. 1. Describe national identities, religious beliefs, customs, and various folklore traditions. 2. Discuss the ways in which physical geography, including climate, influenced how the local Indian nations adapted to their natural environment (e.g., how they obtained food, clothing, tools). 4. Discuss the interaction of new settlers with the already established Indians of the region. 3.3 Students draw from historical and community resources to organize the sequence of local historical events and describe how each period of settlement left its mark on the land. 1. Research the explorers who visited here, the newcomers who settled here, and the people who continue to come to the region, including their cultural and religious traditions and contributions. 2. Describe the economies established by settlers and their influence on the present-day economy, with emphasis on the importance of private property and entrepreneurship. 3. Trace why their community was established, how individuals and families contributed to its founding and development, and how the community has changed over time, drawing on maps, photographs, oral histories, letters, newspapers, and other primary sources. 3.4 Students understand the role of rules and laws in our daily lives and the basic structure of the U.S. government. 3. Know the histories of important local and national landmarks, symbols, and essential documents that create a sense of community among citizens and exemplify cherished ideals (e.g., the U.S. flag, the bald eagle, the Statue of Liberty, the U.S. Constitution, the Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Capitol).

Grade 4 California: A Changing State: Students learn the story of their home state, unique in American history in terms of its vast and varied geography, its many waves of immigration beginning with pre-Columbian societies, its continuous diversity, economic energy, and rapid growth. In addition to the specific treatment of milestones in California history, students examine the state in the context of the rest of the nation, with an emphasis on the U.S.Constitution and the relationship between state and federal government. 4.1 Students demonstrate an understanding of the physical and human geographic features that define places and regions in California. 3. Identify the state capital and describe the various regions of California, including how their characteristics and physical environments (e.g., water, landforms, vegetation, climate) affect human activity. 4. Identify the locations of the Pacific Ocean, rivers, valleys, and mountain passes and explain their effects on the growth of towns. 5. Use maps, charts, and pictures to describe how communities in California vary in land use, vegetation, wildlife, climate, population density, architecture, services, and transportation. 4.2 Students describe the social, political, cultural, and economic life and interactions among people of California from the pre-Columbian societies to the Spanish mission and Mexican rancho periods. 1. Discuss the major nations of California Indians, including their geographic distribution, economic activities, legends, and religious beliefs; and describe how they depended on, adapted to, and modified the physical environment by cultivation of land and use of sea resources. 4.3 Students explain the economic, social, and political life in California from the establishment of the Bear Flag Republic through the Mexican-American War, the Gold Rush, and the granting of statehood. 1. Identify the locations of Mexican settlements in California and those of other settlements, including Fort Ross and Sutter’s Fort. 2. Compare how and why people traveled to California and the routes they traveled (e.g., James Beckwourth, John Bidwell, John C. Fremont, Pio Pico). 3. Analyze the effects of the Gold Rush on settlements, daily life, politics, and the physical environment (e.g., using biographies of John Sutter, Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo, Louise Clapp).

Grade 5 United States History and Geography: Making a New Nation: 5.1 Students describe the major pre-Columbian settlements, including the cliff dwellers and pueblo people of the desert Southwest, the American Indians of the Pacific Northwest, the nomadic nations of the Great Plains, and the woodland peoples east of the Mississippi River. 1. Describe how geography and climate influenced the way various nations lived and adjusted to the natural environment, including locations of villages, the distinct structures that they built, and how they obtained food, clothing, tools, and utensils. 2. Describe their varied customs and folklore traditions. 3. Explain their varied economies and systems of government. 5.3 Students describe the cooperation and conflict that existed among the American Indians and between the Indian nations and the new settlers.

Grade 6 World History and Geography: Ancient Civilizations: Students in grade six expand their understanding of history by studying the people and events that ushered in the dawn of the major Western and non-Western ancient civilizations. Geography is of special significance in the development of the human story. Continued emphasis is placed on the everyday lives, problems, and accomplishments of people, their role in developing social, economic, and political structures, as well as in establishing and spreading ideas that helped transform the world forever. Students develop higher levels of critical thinking by considering why civilizations developed where and when they did, why they became dominant, and why they declined. Students analyze the interactions among the various cultures, emphasizing their enduring contributions and the link, despite time, between the contemporary and ancient worlds. 6.1 Students describe what is known through archaeological studies of the early physical and cultural development of humankind from the Paleolithic era to the agricultural revolution. 2. Identify the locations of human communities that populated the major regions of the world and describe how humans adapted to a variety of environments. 3. Discuss the climatic changes and human modifications of the physical environment that gave rise to the domestication of plants and animals and new sources of clothing and shelter

Did You Know?

a tarantula

When cornered by a predator, a tarantula will rub its hind legs over its abdomen, brushing hairs into its enemy’s eyes. More...