Service Learning

Service learning is a powerful teaching method that engages students in meaningful service to their schools and communities through a process that is carefully integrated with learning objectives. It emphasizes critical thinking and problem solving, addresses a community need that tackles challenges such as the environment and sustainability, and values the talents that people of all ages and abilities have to offer.

Project Learning Tree empowers educators and inspires students to take action to improve their school and neighborhood environment based on what they learn in the classroom.
We encourage educators to take their students outside where they can learn about their environment and work to improve it. Through the community action components of many Project Learning Tree activities and our service-learning programs, GreenSchools and GreenWorks!, students their combine academics and civic duties to improve the environment.


Our GreenWorks! program provides grants up to $1,000 to schools and youth organizations to engage students with their local community and complete service-learning, environmental-improvement projects. Since 1992, PLT has helped fund more than 1,200 GreenWorks! projects in communities across the country.

Projects include (but are not limited to!): habitat restoration, watershed improvement, outdoor classrooms, recycling programs, and energy conservation.

A selection of project examples:


Our GreenSchools program is a nationwide service-learning program that inspires students to take personal responsibility for improving the environment at their school, at home, and in their community. Students, teachers, and school staff receive tools, training, and resources for student-led Green Teams to create healthier schools – and save money. PLT GreenSchools helps improve students’ academic performance in science, technology, engineering, and math, develops students’ critical thinking skills, and grows student leaders.