STORE AND RESOURCE LIBRARY
Professional Development: Explore Your Environment$15.00
Hands-On Training for Hands-On Educational Activities | Online Professional Development Course
This self-paced online course supports formal and nonformal educators in effectively leading experiences with children in grades K-8.
This online training allows you get the most out of the new Explore Your Environment: K-8 Activity Guide, including a detailed walkthrough of the guide, how to use activities, and interactive tutorials.
The course requires approximately 1 hour to complete and can be done when it’s most convenient for your schedule.
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Learn more about the new Explore Your Environment: K-8 Activity Guide
PLT Canada’s new Explore Your Environment: K-8 Activity Guide includes 50 hands-on, multidisciplinary activities to connect children to nature and increase young people’s awareness and knowledge about their environment. Activities integrate teaching about the environment into a multitude of subjects using hands-on classroom studies and outdoor field investigations. The guide is user-friendly, and works in classrooms and nonformal settings, in urban, suburban, and rural areas.
Activities are organized by grade level (K-2, 3-5, and 6-8) and aligned with national standards for science, English language arts, math, and social studies. Many activities offer variations for a different grade level or focus. While lessons can be conducted both indoors and outdoors, all suggest meaningful ways to take student learning outside.
Teachers, nonformal educators, and natural resource professionals can easily integrate the activities into existing curriculum or nonformal education programs. Activities include step-by-step instructions, time and material requirements, and corresponding student worksheets with green career connections. Many activities are particularly suited to urban environments and STEM learning as well as some longer-term studies.
The following activity features will help you adapt the activities for your particular group and setting:
- Take It Outside! – A way to do all or part of the activity outdoors.
- Differentiated Instruction – Solid strategies to adapt the activity for different learners with differing abilities.
- Did You Know? Forest Fact – Interesting insights into how forests contribute to environmental, economic, and social sustainability.
- Career Corner – Inspiration from the earliest grades on up about career paths suggested by the activity, many of which are “green jobs.”
- Academic Standards Connections – Each activity clearly indicates explicit connections to at least one (and usually more) sets of content benchmarks for curriculum frameworks, including CMEC’s Global Competencies and UN Sustainable Development Goals
This supplementary curriculum is multidisciplinary, with an emphasis on science, reading, writing, mathematics, and social studies. It is designed to develop students’ critical thinking and problem-solving skills. The activities are inquiry-based and present students with real-world opportunities to apply STEM.
Activities are organized into color-coded grade bands: K–2, 3–5, and 6–8. Some have variations to adjust for older or younger students. Most activities are designed to take one or two 50-minute periods of instruction. Activities connect students to nature and the outdoors. Several are particularly suited to exploring urban environments.
Each activity contains all the information needed to teach the core lesson, including background information; step-by-step instructions and safety tips; time and material requirements; student pages; assessment suggestions; and ways to enrich or extend the activity.
Topics include forests, wildlife, water, air, energy, waste, climate change, invasive species, community planning, and more.