This section is designed to help classroom teachers find environmental education programs and materials to enhance their classrooom curriculum. It includes links to Curriculum resources, lesson plans, and materials for classroom use. National and state standards that connect to environmental education are also included.
The Funding page identifies grant opportunities to help teachers get environmental projects off the ground!
An extensive list of Organizations provides links to environmental groups in the metropolitan area to help teachers plan field trips and connect to resources in their community and beyond.
Looking for teacher's references, or books for children? Check out our Bibliography for teachers and students.
- Cornell Lab of Ornithology
- US Environmental Protection Agency
- Global Warming: Early Warning Signs
- Gowanus Canal Conservancy STEM Curriculum
- Green Teacher
- Journey North
- National Energy Education Education Development Project
- National Lab Day
- Newtown Creek Alliance Curriculum
- NJ DEP- Radon Alert Lesson Plans and Activities
- PBS Earth on Edge
- PBS Journey to Planet Earth
- PBS Nature
- PBS The Life of Birds
- PBS What’s Up With the Weather?
- The Globe Program
- Trees in Our Community
- US Department of Energy
- Welikia Project (Mannahatta)
- Wonderful Watersheds Curriculum
- Acorn Naturalists - source for books, posters, DVDs, puppets, field equipment, and environmental education curricula
- Ben Meadows - water testing kits
- Carolina Biological - general science lab supplies and live specimens
- Educational Innovations Inc. - science workshop supplies
- Enchanted Learning - online downloadable materials for various topics including animals and habitats
- Enviroscapes - interactive water pollution models and kits
- Incompetetech - Free online graph paper/ Grid paper PDFs
- Insect Lore - Provider of live insects, books and other classroom materials
- LaMotte Company - Authentic water science experiments for all grades.
- Monarch Watch - general supplies and live specimens
- Museum Products - field guides, posters, and hands-on materials for classroom use
- Nature Watch - materials for outdoor education, nature crafts project, and kits for children
- Nasco - general science supplies
- Pond Life ID Kit - online keys for identification of microorganisms
- Skulls Unlimited International - Supplier of natural bone, skulls, replica skulls and teaching supplies
- TreeTop Publishing - journals and field notebooks
BEST BUY COMMUNITY GRANTS
As a means to prepare underserved teens for the tech-reliant jobs of the future, the Best Buy Foundation seeks local and regional nonprofit partners offering out-of-school time programs that create hands-on access to technology education and tools that teens will need to be successful in their future schooling and careers. Programs should include hands-on learning opportunities and engage the youth in experimenting, and interacting with the latest technologies to build 21st century skills. Our goal is to provide underserved teens with access to innovative technologies and help them become interested and fluent in digital learning while developing skills to help better prepare them for future education and career success. Go to the Community Grants page to learn more.
For more information on Community Relations at Best Buy, visit their website.
CAPTAIN PLANET FOUNDATION
Committed to supporting hands-on environmental projects for young people, the foundation provides grants from $250 to $2,500 to school and community groups. For more information, visit their website.
CATSKILL WATERSHED CORPORATION
The Catskill Watershed Corporation provides support to schools, libraries, non-profit groups, museums, and other qualified educational organizations for education projects and programs that help increase public awareness of the human and natural history of the New York City Watershed West of the Hudson River and the New York City Water Supply System.
The Catskill Watershed Corporation (CWC) is accepting Watershed Education Grant proposals from schools and non-profit organizations serving Pre-K through 12th grade audiences and teachers in the New York City West-of-Hudson (WOH) Watershed and/or within the five boroughs of New York City. This program is offered in partnership with the NYC Department of Environmental Protection.
Applications and information are available in their website.
CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND PREVENTION SCIENCE AMBASSADOR PROGRAM
The Science Ambassador Program is a unique opportunity for current and future science teachers to partner with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Coordinating Center for Health Promotion. This pairing will afford current and future teachers excellent educational opportunities to explore well-documented scientific issues and to learn about a variety of different topics, including epidemiology, surveillance, folic acid, genetics, fetal alcohol syndrome, public health technology etc. For more information, visit their website.
CHRISTOPHER COLUMBUS AWARDS
The Christopher Columbus Awards Program combines science and technology with community problem solving. Students in grades 6-8 work in teams with the help of an adult coach to identify an issue they care about and using science and technology, work with experts, conduct research, and put their ideas to the test to develop an innovative solution. Eight finalist teams will receive an all-expense paid trip to Walt Disney World to attend the National Championship week plus a $200 grant to further develop their ideas. Two gold metal teams will receive a $2000 U.S. Savings Bond and the winning team will receive a $25,000 Columbus Foundation Community Grant. Teams do not need to be affiliated with a school to enter. For more information visit their website.
CITIZENS COMMITTEE FOR NEW YORK
The Mollie Parnis Dress Up Your School Grant Program provides small grants up to $500 to youth-run projects that make schools a "better place" with a specieal emphasis on environmental or beautification projects at schools or surrounding areas. Groups must complete their projects within six-months of receiving the grant and attend one problem solving clinic sponsored by Youth Unlimited. Call: (212) 989-0909 or visit their website.
CITY GARDENS CLUB OF NEW YORK
The mission of the Grants Committee is to bring the beauty of the natural world into the lives of children and adults in all five boroughs of New York City and to sponsor educational programs that help citizens:
- develop appreciation and knowledge of nature
- learn gardening skills
- support the preservation and improvement of the city’s environment.
Funds are distributed (in modest amounts) to a variety of non-profit groups chosen by the committee from the year’s pool of grant applications. For more information, go to their website.
An exciting new nonprofit for teachers that offers a Wish List of the things they need to equip great classrooms. ClassWish helps attract parents, alumni, local businesses and other potential supporters to see exactly what is needed and to inspire their help. Contributions are tax-deductible and ClassWish provides a receipt. Visit their website.
Donors Choose is a non-profit website where teachers submit project proposals for materials or experiences their students need. These ideas become classroom reality when concerned individuals, whom they call Citizen Philanthropists, choose projects to fund. Proposals range from "Magical Math Centers" ($200) to "Big Book Bonanza" ($320), to "Cooking Across the Curriculum" ($1,100). Any individual can search such proposals by areas of interest, learn about the classroom needs, and choose to fund the project(s) they find most compelling. In completing a project, donors receive a feedback package of student photos and thank-you notes, a teacher impact letter, and an expenditure report showing their tax deductible gift was spent as directed. Visit their website.
ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY
The Environmental Justice Small Grants Program supports and empowers communities working on solutions to local environmental and public health issues. The program is designed to help communities understand and address exposure to multiple environmental harms and risks. For more information, visit their website.
The EPA Environmental Education Grant program solicits grant proposals from education institutions, environmental and educational public agencies, and not-for-profit organizations to support environmental education projects. Visit their website.
ENVIRONMENTAL RESEARCH AND EDUCATION FOUNDATION
The Environmental Research and Education Foundation awards several grants each year from $10,000 to $50,000 for research or education in topics pertaining to any aspect of solid waste management. Possible topics include, the development of high school and college educational programs. Call: (202) 244-4700 or toll free 1-800-424-2869 or visit their website.
FULBRIGHT TEACHER EXCHANGE PROGRAM
Get involved in a year or semester direct exchange with a counterpart in another country teaching the same subject at the same level. Since 1946, the Fulbright Teacher Exchange Program has helped nearly 23,000 teachers and administrators contribute to mutual understanding between the US and countries around the world. For more information, visit their website.
VOYA UNSUNG HEROES
The VOYA Unsung Heroes award recognizes K-12 educators pioneering new teaching methods and techniques that improve learning. Each year, educators submit applications that describe outstanding educational projects they have initiated or would like to pursue. One hundred finalists chosen from each of the fifty states receive a $2,000 award. Three finalists are selected for additional financial awards of $5,000, $10,000 and $25,000. Visit their website.
JP MORGAN CHASE FELLOWSHIP INITIATIVE
The Fellowship Initiative (TFI) provides intensive academic and leadership training to help young men of color from economically-distressed communities complete their high school educations and better prepare them to excel in colleges and universities. TFI is part of the firm’s broader ongoing efforts to provide adults and young people with the education, skills and resources that contribute to greater economic mobility. Learn more by visiting their website.
NATIONAL GARDENING ASSOCIATION
The National Gardening Association supports programs across the country that actively engage kids in the garden. Selection criteria include: leadership, need, sustainability, community support, innovation, and educational, environmental and/or social programming. Visit their website.
NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY EDUCATION FOUNDATION TEACHER GRANTS
At the National Geographic Society, we invest in bold people and transformative ideas. All proposed projects must be novel, innovative, and exploratory, aligning with our mission and one of our focus areas: Human Journey, Wildlife, or Changing Planet. Visit their website.
NATIONAL URBAN AND COMMUNITY FORESTRY ADVISORY COUNCIL: CHALLENGE COST-SHARE GRANT PROGRAM
The National Urban and Community Forestry Advisory Council is an organization that supports education, projects and groups related to urban and community forestry. Their mission is to make a positive impact on community forests nationwide, both now and in the future, is through its annual challenge cost-share program. Each October, a request for pre-proposals is distributed nationwide. Brief proposals are then evaluated by the Council on the basis of meeting the specified criteria and demonstrating merit relative to the other proposals. Selected applicants are then invited to submit full proposals for final judging in this competitive program. In all cases, project funding must be matched on at least 50-50 basis from non-federal sources and the project must have national scope, application and distribution of its findings. Projects that only have a local impact (i.e. local tree planting projects) do not qualify under this program. visit their website
NEEF offers a variety of grants and awards to support the great work being done across the nation at the local level. We routinely highlight individual and group commitment to nature through education and service. For more information, visit their website.
Since 1946, Target has given 5% of its income to communities. That adds up to over $3 million each and every week. Areas of focus include: Education, Arts, and Safe Families and Communities. For more information visit their website.
TEACHING THE HUDSON VALLEY
Teaching the Hudson Valley is a Hudson River Valley education initative that aims to help teachers share with students and other educators an understanding and love for the culture, ecology and history of the Valley, and the tools needed to preserve it. The program offers curriculum development grants, holds summer institutes on the Hudson Valley and maintains a wide variety of curriculum resources. For more information visit their website.
THE TRUST FOR PUBLIC LAND
The Trust for Public Land's Neighborhood Open Space Management Program provides funding to help groups manage local open spaces, primarily community gardens, in low-to-moderate income neighborhoods. Call: (212) 677-7171
TOSHIBA AMERICA FUND: SMALL GRANT FOR K-6 SCIENCE AND MATH EDUCATION
The Toshiba America Fund provides up to $1,000 for any teacher in public or private schools to encourage hands-on teaching of science and mathematics. Call: (212) 596-0620 or visit their website.
TOYOTA TAPESTRY GRANTS
Toyota and NSTA Tapestry Grants for Teachers program awards $550,000 in grants to K-12 science teachers in the United States and its territories. Toyota offers 50 large grants of up to $10,000 each and a minimum of 20 mini-grants of up to $2500 each. Visit their website
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American Association for the Advancement of Science. Resources for Science Literacy: Professional Development. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1993.
Cerullo, Mary M. Reading the Environment: Children's Literature in the Science Classroom. Columbus, Ohio: ENC Learning Inc., 1997.
Cobb, Edith. The Ecology of Imagination in Childhood. New York, NY: Columbia University Press, 1977.
Cornell, Joseph B. Sharing Nature with Children. Nevada City, CA.: Dawn Publications, 1998.
Hart, Roger. Children's Experience of Place. New York, NY: Irvington Publishers, 1979.
Hungerford, Harold, W J. Bluhm., T.L.Volk, and J.M. Ramsey. Essential Readings in Environmental Education. 2nd edition. Champaign, IL: Stipes Publishing L.L.C., 1998.
International Technology Education Assocation. Standards for Technological Literacy: Content for the Study of Technology. Reston, Virginia: International Technology Education Association, 2002.
Leou, Mary J.( ed.) Readings in Environmental Education: An Urban Model. Dubuque, Iowa: Kendall Hunt Publishing Company, 2005.
Louv, Richard. Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children From Nature-Deficit Disorder. Chapel Hill, North Carolina: Algonquin Books, 2005.
Nabhan, Gary Paul. The Geography of Childhood. Beacon Press, 1995.
Orr, David. Earth in Mind: On Education, Environmental and the Human Prospect. Washington, D.C.: Island Press, 1994.
Orr, David. Ecological Literacy: Education and the Transition to a Postmodern World. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press, 1992.
Roettger, Doris. Seeds and Plants: Using Nonfiction to Promote Literacy Across the Curriculum. New York, NY: Simon & Schuster, 1991.
Rous, Emma Wood. Literature and the Land: Reading and Writing for Environmental Literacy, 7-12. Portsmouth, NH: Boynton/Cook, 2000.
Russell, Helen Ross. Ten-Minute Field Trips. Washington, D.C.: National Science Teachers Association, 1990.
Sobel, David. Children's Special Places: Exploring the Role of Forts, Dens, and Bush Houses in Middle Childhood. Detroit, Michigan: Wayne State University Press, 2002.
Sobel, David. Mapmaking with Children. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 1998.
Sobel, David. Place-based Education: Connecting Classrooms and Communities. Great Barrington, MA: Orion Society, 2004.
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Whitin, DJ. and P. Whitin. Inquiry at the Window: Pursuing the Wonders of Learners. Portsmouth, New Hampshire: Heinemann, 1997.
Aliki. My Five Senses. New York, New York: HarperCollins, 1989.
Borden, Louise. Caps, Hats, Socks and Mittens. New York, New York: Scholastic, Inc., 1989.
Cherry, Lynne. Flute's Journey: The Life of a Wood Thrush. New York, New York: Gulliver Green, 1997.
George, Kristine O'Connell. Old Elm Speaks: Tree Poems. Boston: Clarion Books, 1998.
Kitchen, Bert. And So They Build. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Candlewick Pess, 1995.
Lauber, Patricia and Holly Keller. Who Eats What? Food Chains and Food Webs. New York, New York: HarperCollins, 1995.
Showers, Paul and Randy Chewning. Where Does the Garbage Go? New York, New York: HarperCollins, 1994.
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Wells, Robert E. What's Smaller Than a Pygmy Shrew? Morton Grove, Illinois: Albert Whitman & Company, 1995.