The following are seven proven programs that compliment TU’s youth education initiatives:
Environmental Education Guides
The Pacific Education Institute, in partnership with the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies and other partners, developed a series of guides that lead educators through developing excellent field programs. Guides include landscape investigation, project-based learning, using technology out of doors, and many others. Their guides are based on theoretical and practical research, and offer sample lesson plans as well as guides for creating your own lessons.
The Leaf Pack Network® is a network of teachers and students investigating their local stream ecosystems. The investigation uses the Leaf Pack Experiment Kit from the LaMotte Company. After conducting their own leaf pack experiment, schools share data through the network. These data shed light on the important connection between streamside forests and the ecology of rivers and streams. The Leaf Pack experiment involves creating an artifical leaf pack (dry leaves in a mesh bag), placing it in the stream for three to four weeks, examining the packs in the classroom and discovering different types of aquatic insects that are used as indicators of stream health.
Leopold Education Project
The Leopold Education Project (LEP) is an innovative, interdisciplinary, critical thinking, conservation and environmental education curriculum based on the classic writings of the renowned conservationist, Aldo Leopold. The Leopold Education Project teaches the public about humanity's ties to the natural environment in the effort to conserve and protect the earth's natural resources.
Project Learning Tree
Project Learning Tree® is an award winning, multi-disciplinary environmental education program for educators and students in PreK-grade 12. PLT, a program of the American Forest Foundation, is one of the most widely used environmental education programs in the United States and abroad. PLT uses the forest as a "window" on the world to increase students' understanding of our environment; stimulate students' critical and creative thinking; develop students' ability to make informed decisions on environmental issues; and instill in students the commitment to take responsible action on behalf of the environment.
Project WET (Water Education for Teachers)
The centerpiece of the Project WET program is the Project WET Curriculum and Activity Guide. This 561-page guide is a collection of multidisciplinary water-related activities for ages 5 through 18 that are hands-on, easy to use, and fun! The lessons incorporate a variety of formats, such as large and small group learning, whole-body activities, laboratory investigations, discussion of local and global topics, and community service projects. The guide also features cross-reference and planning charts, a glossary, and background material on activity development and field-testing.
(in addition to Basic WILD, they offer Aquatic WILD and Flying WILD)
Project WILD is one of the most widely-used conservation and environmental education programs among educators of students in kindergarten through high school. It is based on the premise that young people and educators have a vital interest in learning about our natural world. Emphasizing wildlife because of its intrinsic value, Project WILD addresses the need for human beings to develop as responsible citizens of our planet.
The Catskills: A Sense of Place
(most lessons are adaptable for other geographic areas)
A whole series of curriculum guides on the Catskills! This resource helps teachers enliven and enrich their lessons and instill a sense of Catskills pride in their students.
Our emphasis of hands-on learning and process skills makes the guides useful for any teacher who would like to address NYS Learning Standards, listed with each activity. The lessons are designed to fit school curricula. The modules span grade levels 3-12, so students can benefit from these engaging, place-based studies over a period of years.
The Catskill region is home to a magnificent state forest preserve and a wealth of important resources. Our communities offer a distinctive rural character that is fast disappearing from surrounding areas. The Catskills: A Sense of Place (CSP) is designed to give children a better awareness, understanding, and appreciation of the distinctive features of our area. By showing young people what makes our region beautiful and unique, you can help promote active citizenship and a better future for the Catskills!