Clark Fork School offers place-based after-school programs for children age 2 through 5th grade. All activities focus on having fun in the out-of-doors and deepening students' connection to the Missoula Valley.

After-School Programs

For families already enrolled in our preschool program, we offer Shooting Stars After-School Program (ages 2-5).

We offer our Kids-Niche After-School Enrichment Programs for Clark Fork students, home schooled students, and students from Missoula County Public Schools from 3:00-6:00pm (2:00-6:00pm on Thursdays). We also offer pick-up for students enrolled at Rattlesnake Elementary.

These programs include these different age groups:

 Huckleberries (Kindergarten)

Kinnickinnick (First Grade)

Fireweed (Second Grade)

Beargrass (Third- Fifth grade)


The Shooting Stars and Kid-Niche programs follow the below mentioned guidelines, adapted from David Sobel’s Ladder of Development. The ages listed below are approximations; remember that every student matures at a different rate and all activities should be developmentally appropriate.

Early Childhood ~ 2-5 yrs

  • Activities explore the “magic” of the natural world and focus on building compassion.

  • Ex. “Become” neighborhood animals, celebrate seasons, make child-sized nests, dig animal burrows in the snow.

  • Focus on noticing and observing things (rather than naming or identifying).

Early Elementary ~ 6-7 yrs

  • Activities continue to build curiosity, empathy and allure for the outside world, and investigations deepen, as developmentally appropriate.

  • Ex. Make pine cone birdfeeders, plant a sunflower maze, turn over fallen logs, adopt a tree.

  • Focus on exploring things and concepts, but don’t focus on naming/identifying (unless a child is particularly interested). This is a great time to introduce and begin exploring guidebooks.

Elementary ~ 7-11 yrs

  • Be curious, indulge in exploration, and create special places.

  • Ex. Build forts, create imaginary worlds, play capture-the-flag, plant native plants, search for treasures.

  • Begin to explore things and concepts in more depth. Begin identifying species if students are interested (though it’s still ok to make up names)