Environmental Education Resources

ee resources

Every month we carefully select new tools and resources that support and enhance Project Learning Tree’s lessons.

 

SUPPLEMENTAL CURRICULUM

Get a Sneak Peek into PLT’s New NGSS-Designed E-Units

Have you checked out PLT’s new e-units for grades 3-5 and 6-8 yet? Watch this video slide show for an introduction, plus:

  • If you’re going to be teaching about food webs and food chains this year, download this free web of life activity for grades 3-5.
  • Are you putting together a lesson plan on carbon and climate? Download this free carbon cycle worksheet for grades 6-8.

 

TOOLS AND APPS

Desmos Graphing Calculator

Desmos creates digital math tools, such as this online graphing calculator that students can use for free. They also create activities and their Activity Builder helps teachers create digital math activities. The online calculator has many uses in science and math settings, from graphing functions, plotting tables of data, and evaluating equations, to exploring transformations and more. It is also available as a smartphone app. Read the Desmos blog for tips and ideas for using the calculator in the classroom. 

(resource for PLT’s PreK-8 activities “Renewable or Not?,” “Name That Tree,” and “The Global Climate”)

 

GAMES

Cornucopia

A STEM education simulation game from the California Academy of Sciences called Cornucopia is a free online resource. The game teaches students in grades 5-12 about natural resource use and management, the effect of climate conditions on water availability and food production, and the way agricultural technology impacts water use.  

(resource for PLT’s PreK-8 activities “Every Tree for Itself,” “A Forest of Many Uses,” “Forest Consequences,” and “Forest for the Trees”)

 

INFOGRAPHICS

Timeline of Earth’s Temperature

It can be difficult to visually represent climate change. This illustrated timeline of the Earth’s average temperature since the last Ice Age glaciation demonstrates the exponential increase in temperature in today’s world. The piece is a wonderful demonstration of how rapidly the climate is changing compared to historic data. 

(resource for PLT’s PreK-8 activities “The Global Climate” and PLT’s secondary module Southeastern Forests and Climate Change: “Carbon on the Move,” “Atlas of Change,” and “Counting Carbon”, as well as PLT’s Carbon & Climate e-unit for Grades 6-8)

 

VIDEOS

Death by Design Documentary

Consumers love – and live on – their smartphones, tablets and laptops. However, even the tiniest devices have deadly environmental and health costs. From the electronics factories in China, to the high-tech innovation labs of Silicon Valley, Death by Design tells a story of the fast-approaching tipping point between consumerism and sustainability.

(resource for PLT’s secondary module Focus on Risk: “What is Risk?” “Things Aren’t Always What They Seem,” “Communicating Risk,” and “Weighing the Options: A Look at Tradeoffs”)

Clean Water: Brought to You by Chemistry 

Water is essential to life, and chemistry is essential to water! This short video from the American Chemistry Council highlights some of the ways chemistry is involved in keeping the water supply flowing and drinking water safe.

(resource for PLT’s PreK-8 activities “Water Wonders” and “Every Drop Counts,” as well as PLT’s secondary module Focus on Forests: “From Forest to Faucet”)

 

INTERACTIVE MAPS AND WEBSITES

Forest Atlas of the US

The US Forest Service created a complete Forest Atlas of the United States. It covers everything from tree pollen count to owl habitats to agroforestry practices, using a range of the Forest Service’s resources. Use this in your classroom to give your students a comprehensive understanding of what American forests have to offer!

(resource for PLT’s PreK-8 activities “Forest for the Trees,” as well as PLT’s secondary module Forests of the World: “Mapping the World’s Forests” and “Understanding the Effects of Forest Uses,” as well as Focus on Forests: “Who Owns America’s Forests” and “Forest to Faucet,” as well as PLT’s Carbon & Climate e-unit for Grades 6-8)

Endangered Species Success Stories

The Endangered Species Act (ESA) delivers remarkable successes. This interactive map of the United States presents information about the endangered species in each state and what is being done to help conserve them. 

(resource for PLT’s PreK-8 activities “Habitat Pen Pals,” “Dynamic Duos,” and “Life on the Edge,” as well as PLT’s secondary module Biodiversity: “Protected Areas: Issues and Analysis”)

 

GUIDEBOOKS AND FACT SHEETS

Guide to Responsible Green Camping

Are you worried about children being more familiar with touch screens than with soil, plants, and bugs? It might be time to get the kiddos out camping. This online guide to responsible camping will get you prepared for a green camping trip, including how to pack, how to camp, responsible camping activities, and handy safety and eco tips.

(resource for PLT’s PreK-8 activities “A Few of My Favorite Things”, “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle,” “A Peek at Packaging,” and “Resource-Go-Round,” as well as PLT’s GreenSchools program)

 

 

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