The Cottonwood School of Civics and Science

A Place-Based, Public Charter School in Portland, Oregon


To provide a creative learning environment where students develop a sense of place and become stewards of the natural world and active citizens within our community.

Portland skyline
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Place-Based Education in Action

Before they began the trimester, we asked this 1st/2nd grade class simple questions about rivers…

Place-based education is a way of taking the walls down between school and the community.

7th graders identify a problem in the community and seek out policy-based solutions.

Community Partnerships

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Portland Parks and Rec
Mirabella Retirement
PSU Archaeology
Rice Museum
Friends of Tryon Creek

Make a Donation to Help Further Place-Based Education!

Stories From the Field

4th/5th Grade Fieldwork

Nov / Dec 2019 Fieldwork Update

7th/8th graders trekked to Oaks Bottom wildlife refuge, 4th/5th grades have been laying the foundation for a year-long study of American History through an Indigenous lens. Geology is the place-based focus for 3rd grade. Kinders have been exploring the topics of identity, family, and art.

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October, 2019 Fieldwork Update

What is a neighborhood? What is a community? Are they the same thing or are there differences? These are just a few of the questions our 1st and 2nd grade students are exploring this fall.

Did you know that The Cottonwood School has a whole class of medical experts? Another group of 6th grade students have entered the University of Colombo Medical School and have recently passed their MCATs.

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7th/8th Grades: Project Citizen

June 2019 Fieldwork Update

As the school year came to a close, students stayed busy with their place-based community projects. Here are just a few highlights from the past two weeks.

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Keep Updated with Periodic CSCS News and Place-Based Education Updates:        

hills and trees

Upcoming School Events and Announcements: