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.

Butterfly Gardens Come to Life

Sixteen schools across the country participated in the MonarchLIVE project to build butterfly gardens. Here are the stories of three of those schools.


Lab Coats Paint a Thousand Words

Create your own painted lab coats! These powerful visual tools engage students in learning about science and the environment.

Outstanding Educator
Joy Cowart

Joy Cowart uses PLT to teach language arts and English as a second language to grades 6-12 at Lowndes County Schools in Valdosta, Georgia.

Outstanding Educator
Barbara Murphy

As Gifted Specialist at Westlawn Middle School in Huntsville, Alabama, Barbara Murphy teaches environmental education and Spanish and conducts enrichment classes.

Outstanding Educator
Krissy Varness

Krissy Varness teaches math and science to sixth graders at DePoali Middle School in Reno, Nevada. She is responsible for much of Nevada PLT’s rejuvenation.

Outstanding Educator
Amber Hodges

Amber Hodges is a project associate for the Virginia Cooperative Extension in Roanoke, Virginia, who provides programming to about 1,800 K–12 students per year.

Outstanding Educator
Beatrice Long

Beatrice (Bea) Long teaches eighth grade science at Seabrook Intermediate School, Seabrook, Texas, and is a science teacher mentor at the Environmental Institute of Houston.