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Why Teach Outside?

Nature helps children’s development–intellectually, emotionally, socially, spiritually, and physically. Studies show that teaching outdoors produces student gains in social studies, science, language arts and math.

Outstanding Educator
Reeda Hart

Reeda Hart, a science outreach specialist at Northern Kentucky University in Highland Heights, Kentucky, helped develop PLT’s Early Childhood curriculum.

Outstanding Educator
Susan Cox

Susan Cox, a conservation education coordinator for the U.S. Forest Service in Durham, New Hampshire, forges partnerships between natural resource professionals and educators.

Outstanding Educator
Melissa Eldridge

As the District Manager for Ionia Conservation District in Ionia, Michigan, Melissa Eldridge helped restore a local nature trail and promotes PLT activities.

Outstanding Educator
Laura Beiser

Laura Beiser is an environmental administrator with the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality in Jackson who works with nonprofits that do watershed environmental education.

Outstanding Educator
Laurie Root

Laurie Root, a naturalist with South Dakota Game, Fish, and Parks in Rapid City, is a hub connecting environmental educators in South Dakota.

Outstanding Educator
Michael Murphrey

Michael Murphrey, a staff forester for the Texas Forest Service in Lufkin, Texas, educates the public about conservation, especially invasives like the southern pine beetle.