First Peoples of California Program (previously Indian Life)

2021 Update

The First Peoples of California program will begin in October and run through mid November. If you would like to schedule your class for the program, please email


Unable to attend program in person

We welcome you to view the following presentations about the first residents to live in our Valley, who they were and how they lived.

This virtual program is for your classroom use but is not meant to replace the museum’s two hour, in person, hands on and interactive program held at the museum each fall.

We hope that you will find the following resources helpful.  You may choose one or all four options.  Choice #2  "Interactive Activities"  is a self-guided series of exercises meant to engage the student and deepen learning.  It  is hoped that the exercises will be an addendum to the teacher's lessons.  Choice #4, "California's First People: Then and Now"  is a 45-minute adult program.  Fourth graders will need teacher support to fully appreciate some of the vocabulary and concepts.

Virtual Program Resources - Click on name in black

  1. The Native Americans video presented by Museum Docent Stan Wharton.
  2. California's First People Interactive Activities - a PowerPoint Presentation available for teachers to use with their students.
  3. The Native Americans of the San Ramon Valley - Additional information from the Museum's Knowing Your Community local history curriculum
  4. California's First People: Then and Now Virtual Program presented by Museum Docent Renee Spitz on 9/24/20
Condor, Indian Life
Each fall, the Museum of the San Ramon Valley offers an Indian Life program to fourth graders who come to the museum to learn about the California Indians, the first people to settle this region thousands of years ago.   It is a field trip especially adapted to meet the 4th grade standard for history and social science [4.33].
Fourth Graders whose history and social studies focus on the state of California, learn how these early people lived in the mountains, river valleys, deserts and coast, adapting to their physical environment and cultivating natural resources.  At the museum, the students have the opportunity to hear creation accounts, to view artifacts from prehistoric times, to pound acorns and to play Indian games.
Although the Indian Life program is geared to Fourth Grade curriculum, the program accommodates and welcomes older students and adult groups who are interested in learning about California Indians.
If your class or group is interested in the Indian Life program at the Museum, please call Donna Grier at 837-3750 for more information.