In Our Own Backyard (IOOBY) Program


IOOBy AV Girl With GrasshopperLandPaths' education program In Our Own BackYard (IOOBY) works in partnership with the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District to develop a connection between Sonoma County students and a preserved open space property.

The IOOBY program includes four theme-based visits to the property throughout the year, each one focusing on one of the following natural history topics: Discovery and Exploration, Watersheds, Habitat, and Stewardship. Classroom visits prior to each outing help establish good trail and safety practices, as well as orientation to tool use and stewardship techniques.

Many of the IOOBY themes and activities correlate to the California State Science Standards, with all age-appropriate activities striking a balance between hands-on learning and time for reflection. Many teachers report that IOOBY is their only science for the year! In addition to academics, IOOBY exposes students to nature, fueling their curiosity and imagination.  

LandPaths seeks to cultivate a level of comfort in, connection to, and informed appreciation of the outdoors within IOOBY participants. Students develop a relationship with the outdoors that they will remember and carry with them for years. Ideally, this connection will be a foundation for them to draw upon in the future, to seek out outdoor experiences for many reasons.

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During the school year, LandPaths' IOOBY program will serve a socioeconomically & ethnically diverse group of over 900 Sonoma County students from 14 classes. Each class will visit one or more of the following properties preserved by the Open Space District, Sonoma Land Trust, the Laguna Foundation, and Sonoma County Regional Parks: Healdsburg Ridge Open Space Preserve, Taylor Mountain, Glen Oaks Ranch, the Laguna Uplands, Bayer Farm, Jacob's Ranch, Ranchero Mark West (aka Doerksen Ranch), and Riverfront Park.

Iooby Stewardship

"Today is the best day ever! I got to plant four trees with my friends and help the Earth!" -IOOBY student

Lend a hand this year and join IOOBY students as they continue to care for the many properties they visit  throughout Sonoma County. Projects range from removing non-native plants, planting and maintaining native plants, caring for trails and picnic areas, birdhouse installation and maintenance, and creating art that shares the stories of our projects.  Project partners include the City of Santa Rosa, Sonoma Land Trust, Sonoma County Regional Parks, Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space DistrictSave the Redwoods League, Sonoma County Community Foundation.

Team Building Bird Boxes

The IooBY program is sponsored in part by the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation & Open Space District, Save the Redwoods League, Sonoma County Community Foundation and in part through donations from supporters like you.


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