Be a Catalyst for Change…Become a Green Schools National Network Member
The green schools movement is the most critical education reform initiative of our time. Through the Green Schools National Network (GSNN) membership program, you can show your support and become a catalyst for change for green schools everywhere.
GSNN’s membership program is designed for leaders (like you!) who use sustainability to drive innovation in their classrooms, schools, or school districts. As a member of the program, you will learn from and be inspired by the people who are transforming schools across the country.
Choose from 5 different levels of membership: Individual, Nonprofit, preK-12 School, School District, or Corporate. Each level comes with its own set of benefits and discounts, some of which include: professional publications, a subscription to Green Teacher Magazine, discounted Green Schools Conference and Expo registration, discounted and free professional development opportunities, networking opportunities, and discounted fees for GSNN school and district coaching.
Visit GSNN’s membership website to learn more and sign up.
2017 Global Education Conference
The Global Education Conference is a free online event that brings together educators and innovators from around the world. The eighth annual conference will be held Monday, November 13 through Wednesday, November 16, 2017 (November 17th in some time zones). The entire virtual conference will be held online using the Blackboard Collaborate platform.
The Global Education Conference is a collaborative, inclusive, world-wide community initiative involving students, educators, and organizations at all levels. It is designed to significantly increase opportunities for building education-related connections around the globe while supporting cultural awareness and recognition of diversity. To attend this year’s conference and to be kept informed of the latest conference news and updates, please join this network.
This conference is also accepting proposals for presentations. The deadline to submit a proposal is November 1st. Lean more about the call for proposals here.
Association for Learning Environments LearningSCAPES 2017
LearningSCAPES is the conference for those who plan, design, equip, furnish, and maintain places where students learn. This year’s conference will be held October 26 – 29th at the Marriott Marquis in Atlanta, Georgia. Join your colleagues for groundbreaking educational sessions, inspiring keynote speakers, and a showcase of state-of-the-art tools that move learning into the future.
Registration is now open! Visit the website to learn more about conference programming, speakers, special events, and travel.
The Cloud Institute for Sustainability Education
The Cloud Institute for Sustainability Education works with schools and school districts to help them integrate Education for Sustainability (EfS) into their curriculum. Core services include consulting and leadership development (on-site and off-site); professional development and faculty coaching; curriculum design, assessment, mapping, and alignment; and school and community partnerships. The Cloud Institute holds an annual Summer Design Studio that enables educators, administrators, and program designers to learn how to design and embed EfS into curriculum, assessments, and programs.
Community Works Institute (CWI) supports and promotes exemplary teaching strategies and practices for K-16 educators and community programs that support students in becoming caring, responsible, and active members of their communities. CWI offers a variety of professional development opportunities for K-16 and community-based educators in the United States and internationally, including on-site training, retreats, coaching, and consulting. Their signature offering is a series of summer institutes that integrate field-tested service-learning best practices and principles of sustainability to engage K-16 students in academically based service that contributes to sustainable communities. Visit the website to learn more about this and other professional development opportunities.
At EcoRise, we believe in the power of teachers to ignite innovation and the potential of students to design a sustainable future for all. Our school-based program empowers youth to tackle real-world challenges in their schools and communities by teaching sustainability, design innovation, and social entrepreneurship. Over 350 schools have implemented our full program and 1,800 teachers in 26 countries have accessed our educational materials. Our curriculum, classroom grants, ongoing training, and support engages educators and students in meaningful learning experiences. Our program empowers teachers to confidently champion sustainability and innovation in their classroom, while students cultivate 21st century skills and sustainable living practices.
- Online and in-person professional development, curriculum, and self-paced resources for green industry connections to K–12 educators, STEM educators, and Project-Based Learning teachers.
- For U.S.-based schools, we award micro grants to student-designed sustainability projects.
- Our committed partnership with like-minded institutions and corporate supporters to expand reach and impact.
Visit www.ecorise.org to learn more.
Edspaces is the gathering place for architects, dealers, preK-12 schools, colleges and universities, independent manufacturers representatives, exhibitors, and corporations to learn about trends and experience the latest products and services to enhance student learning. This year’s conference will be held October 25 – 27th in Kansas City, Missouri.
Registration is now open! Check out the website for a conference schedule; a listing of educational sessions, tours, and exhibitors; and hotel and travel information.
EL Education Site Seminar at Evergreen Community Charter School
December 4 – 5, 2017
Asheville, North Carolina
During this 2-day Site Seminar, you will learn how Evergreen Community Charter School uses “The Natural World” design principle to connect core practices in the dimensions of Culture & Character and Curriculum. The seminar will emphasize Evergreen’s integration of environmental education through its learning expeditions, culture and values, use of school-wide initiatives and events, and use of its natural schoolyard environment.
- Classroom visits highlighting EL Education curriculum practices
- Workshops on designing expeditions with Common Core standards and dimensions of student achievement: Knowledge & Skills, Character, and High Quality Work
- Focused discussion groups, including aligning EL Education, environmental education, social justice, and Common Core standards
- Environmental education experiences that inspire ways to create outdoor learning spaces
- Involvement in Evergreen’s Culture and Character traditions, including Crew and class meetings
- Workshops on nurturing school culture and on using data, including student self-assessment, to support deeper learning
- Conversations with parents about parent involvement, volunteerism, and sustaining school culture
Registration per Person
For schools in the EL Education Network: $450 payable to EL Education. Register online at www.elschools.org.
For schools NOT in the EL Network: $450 payable to Evergreen Community Charter School. Register by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Detailed information on accommodations will be provided upon registration. The seminar includes lunch and snacks daily.
For more information, contact Marin Leroy, Environmental Education Coordinator at Evergreen Community Charter School by phone 828-298-2173 ext. 234 or email email@example.com.
Students, teachers, and organizations will celebrate global collaboration on September 21, 2017. On this day (and beyond), experienced global educators and professionals will host connective projects and events and invite public participation. The primary goals of this full day event are to demonstrate the power of global connectivity in classrooms, schools, institutions of informal learning, and universities around the world, and to introduce others to the tools, resources, and projects that are available to educators today. Learn more about the many ways you can participate and view resources ranging from lessons, books, and blogs to online communities and relevant projects.
Green Schools Alliance is an international organization that advances student success and saves schools resources by fostering whole school sustainability. Originally developed as a network created by schools for schools, the Alliance has evolved to provide integrated and organized support to students, school professionals, schools, and districts to foster sustainability work.
Alliance programs are scaled and developed from member ideas to make them more accessible for other member schools. The Alliance conducts work via its international coalition of schools, rooted in the idea that collaboration among schools brings the greatest change for sustainable learning environments and communities. They:
- promote student success through leadership training, project-based learning, and a support system.
- inspire school professionals through access to training, resources, and a community of fellow sustainability champions.
- provide schools with tools to accelerate whole school sustainability efforts through collective purchasing power, access to resources, and reporting and recognition systems.
- offer districts the programs to leverage high-volume purchasing power, foster collaborative communication, and gather system-wide information on school efforts.
Learn more about upcoming events and training programs.
Green Strides Webinar Series Calendar
The Green Strides Webinar Series provides school communities with the tools they need to reduce their schools’ environmental impact and costs; improve health and wellness; and teach effective environmental education. It provides all schools access to the resources that help them move toward the Pillars of the U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools recognition award. Sign up for Green Strides Webinar Series email updates to receive information on future webinars.
Best Practices in School Gardens
Presenter: Mary Dudley
Wednesday, September 27th 2017, 7:30-8:30pm EST
To overcome the challenges and be successful, you need to keep a few basic principles in mind. Doing so will add to the overall sustainability of a garden and allow for the school community to participate in the project. Based on several years of research and experience with dozens of school gardens, Mary and her colleagues will share their list of basic steps and best practices for school gardens.
Eco-System Monitoring Programs
Presenter: Daniel Shaw
Wednesday, October 25th 2017, 7:30-8:30pm EST
From climate change to natural disasters: how tiny critters invoke joy and reveal environmental secrets. There are many species of wildlife that school age citizen scientists can monitor. But most scatter when humans are around. By contrast, arthropods – animals with jointed legs and no backbones – are abundant, diverse, and found in all types of habitats. Building on his article in Green Teacher’s Summer 2016 issue, Dan will share the techniques he has used for 20 years to engage students in authentic field-based data collection. He will also explain how to add their findings to the databases of citizen science programs so that students’ work will have meaning beyond their own classrooms.
Telling your Story with Story Maps
Presenter: Joseph Kerski
Monday, October 30th 2017, 7:30-8:30pm EST
Join geographer Joseph Kerski as we explore the world of multimedia, web-based story maps. Government agencies, nonprofit organizations, private companies, and students and educators of all ages are using story maps to explain their mission; to show the results of their research; to inspire; to call attention to issues such as water quality, land use change, energy, or natural hazards; and for many other purposes. Story maps foster spatial thinking, critical thinking, communication skills, and immersive work with many technologies, including multimedia and web-based maps. Story maps can be embedded in your own web pages and presentations, and can also serve as tools to assess student learning. This webinar will include how story maps can be used in the classroom and in the field, the types that are available, and how they connect to the broader field of geotechnologies. Ways of creating and sharing story maps will be also be shown so that you will feel confident that you and your students can use, create, and share them.
North American Association for Environmental Education 2017 Annual Conference
The 46th Annual North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE) Conference and 14th Annual Research Symposium is being held in San Juan, Puerto Rico from October 17 – 21, 2017.
For more than four decades, NAAEE has convened one of the leading annual conferences for environmental education professionals, designed to promote innovation, networking, learning, and dissemination of best practices. The annual Research Symposium, held in advance of the conference, attracts new and established researchers to examine in-progress environmental education research and promote dialogue between researchers and practitioners.
The 46th Annual Conference will challenge participants to think creatively and collectively about how to create a more sustainable future, and will pay tribute to the importance of the first international conference on environmental education, which was held in Tbilisi, Georgia in 1977. Participants will share ideas and innovation about how to build on the Tbilisi framework to imagine a better future and create a path forward for the field in the coming decade and beyond.
Visit the conference website to learn more about the conference and stay up-to-date on the latest programming and registration information.
Shelburne Farms is a nonprofit organization educating for a sustainable future. That means learning that links knowledge, inquiry, and action to help students build a healthy future for their communities and the planet. Its home campus is a 1,400-acre working farm, forest, and National Historic Landmark.
Shelburne Farms’ school programs staff support both student learning and professional development for educators. The ideas of place and sustainability are at the heart of its work. Shelburne Farms offers a variety of experiences that inspire deep connections to community, and a commitment to a healthy future.
Education for Sustainability Immersion
August 17 – 18, 2017
For those wishing to dive deeply into their education for sustainability work in a residential, retreat-like setting at Shelburne Farms. Evening programming will be held on Thursday night.
Cost $375. Includes meals and accommodations; excludes graduate credits. Limited to 15 participants. Scholarships are available to cover the course fee. Learn more and register here.
ABCs of Farm-Based Education October 2017
October 22 – 24, 2017
Are you looking to build a farm-based education program, or inspire your existing programming? At this workshop, you’ll fill your toolbox with kid-tested, educator approved activities, as you join a community of peers from around the region. Spend three days in hands-on, discussion and activity-based learning and explore Shelburne Farms’ dairy, farmyard, garden, and forest classrooms. Experience activities from Shelburne Farms’ publications Project Seasons and Cultivating Joy and Wonder as we discuss ways to engage school groups and farm visitors. In addition to activity sharing and program development, we will discuss tips for creating a safe learning environment and will have ample time for getting to know one another and our respective farm-based education sites. Learn more and register here.
Experiential Tools: Resources for Teaching and Group Facilitation
Experiential Tools was founded by author and educator Jennifer Stanchfield to provide educators with quality, unique, and user-friendly methods to enhance learning, increase engagement, build community, facilitate group development, and engage learners in meaningful reflection and dialogue. Resources offered include consulting, professional development programs, workshops, books, and teaching and facilitation tools. Visit the website for a list of upcoming workshops.
Facing the Future is an international program, based out of Western Washington University, creating tools for educators that equip and motivate students to develop critical thinking skills, build global awareness, and engage in positive solutions for a sustainable future. The curriculum is organized around eight sustainability big ideas:
- Connecting with Nature
- Equity and Justice
- Health and Resiliency
- Local to Global
- Peace and Collaboration
- Respect for Limits
- Universal Responsibility
Facing the Future curriculum materials and resources are available for K-12 teachers, teachers in colleges of education, and for some community college and undergraduate classes. All materials are developed for teachers, by teachers, with best teaching and learning practices in mind and are aligned with Common Core Standards, Next Generation Science Standards, and most state standards frameworks.
Fueling Our Future: A Facing the Future Professional Development Workshop
This online course has been designed to help K-12 educators learn how to use global sustainability as a context for teaching students about energy. Using Fueling Our Future: Exploring Sustainable Energy Use (middle and high school versions) as a guide, participants will gain background knowledge in energy, energy literacy, and sustainability; use the lens of sustainability to explore the social, economic, and environmental impacts of different energy sources; and identify ways to implement Fueling Our Future lessons in the classroom.
This course is free; however, participants are encouraged to have a copy of Fueling Our Future: Exploring Sustainable Energy Use to refer to throughout the course.
Getting Smart on Global Education and Equity
This publication, authored by Getting Smart and VIF International Education, explores the characteristics of globally competent students and addresses how K-12 institutions can utilize global education practices to equitably prepare all students for success.
Grades of Green was founded in 2008 by four California moms who wanted a better world for their children. This nonprofit provides schools with free and easy access to over 40 activities that aim to instill environmental values in students. Activities are broken out into categories, including air, energy, toxins, waste, water, and earth. The organization also has a Youth Corps Eco Leadership Program that mentors 60 selected second through twelfth grade students to become eco-leaders. Participation in the program is free, though students must submit an application to be considered.
Jane Goodall’s Roots and Shoots
Founded in 1991, Jane Goodall’s Roots & Shoots is a youth service program for young people of all ages. Through this program, youth lead local change through service campaigns while developing skills and traits of compassionate leaders. Students can choose from one of the suggested campaigns on the website or design their own. Educators will find all the tools and resources they need to implement a Roots & Shoots service campaign at their school and can search the website for projects that have been completed by students around the world.
A product of the U.S. Green Building Council’s The Center for Green Schools, Learning Lab provides K-12 teachers and school leaders with comprehensive, project- and STEM-based curriculum that encourages student leadership, environmental literacy, and real-world action.
Discover best-in-class content, training, and tools. Access their curated catalogue of lesson plans, interactive projects, assessment opportunities, and other multimedia resources in English and Spanish. Lessons are mapped to meet current educational standards and were created by educators, for educators.
National Geographic Society Education Resources
The National Geographic Society’s education website holds a treasure trove of resources for K-12 educators. Browse teaching resources that include lessons, activities, educator guides, and games; access map making resources, such as their MapMaker Interactive online platform and MapMaker Kits; or learn more about the many programs the Society offers from Citizen Science and Explorer Classroom to professional development opportunities.
The Natural Inquirer program produces a variety of science education materials for PreK through grade 12. Natural Inquirer products are produced by the Forest Service, the Cradle of Forestry in America Interpretive Association (CFAIA), and other cooperators and partners. Their website includes lesson plans, activities, and resources for teachers as well as games, videos, and activities for kids.
Natural Inquirer is a free science education journal written for middle through high school age students. In 1998, Natural Inquirer was created so that scientists could share their research with students. Each article follows the same format as a scientific journal article by including an Introduction, Methods, Findings, and Discussion section. Additionally, each article has a Meet the Scientist section, Thinking About Science section, Thinking About the Environment section, and a FACTivity. The FACTivity is a hands-on activity that reinforces a concept from the article. All articles are correlated to National Education Standards.
Investi-gator is a free science journal written for upper elementary level students. The journal follows the same format as Natural Inquirer just written at a different level.
The Natural Inquirer Reader series was developed to meet the needs of PreK through second grade students. Each Reader focuses on one Forest Service scientist and their research. Readers contain glossaries, activities, and are correlated to National Education Standards.
Sustainable Tomorrow: A Teacher’s Guidebook for Applying Systems Thinking to Environmental Education Curricula
This guidebook, a project of the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies’ North American Conservation Education Strategy, demonstrates how to use systems concepts and tools to apply systems thinking to environmental education curricula using lessons from Project WILD, Project WET, and Project Learning Tree for grades 9-12.
The World’s Largest Lesson was developed by Project Everyone to introduce the United Nations’ Global Goals for Sustainable Development to children and young people and unite them in action to end extreme poverty, fight inequality and injustice, and tackle climate change. This year’s Lesson starts on September 18th. Visit the website to learn more about this project, find resources and lesson plans for each of the 17 goals, and to learn how you can join this global effort.
Founded in 1986, Youth Service America (YSA) supports a global culture of engaged children and youth committed to a lifetime of meaningful service, learning, and leadership. With half the world’s population under age 25, YSA’s mission is to help all young people find their voice, take action, and make an impact on vital community issues. In 2016, YSA began to focus its assets and outcomes on achieving the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.
Through YSA’s programs, youth lead community change through:
- Awareness – educating others to change behaviors
- Service – using their passion, creativity, and idealism to solve problems through volunteerism
- Advocacy – to change policies and laws
- Philanthropy – generating and donating financial and in-kind support
YSA’s Learning Center has resources and trainings for educators, and the website’s Take Action tab provides ideas for service broken out by cause, audience, and YSA Programs.
Grants and Awards
American Conservation Film Festival’s Next Gen Capture Conservation Contest
The Next Gen Capture Conservation Content invites youth ages 5 – 18 to submit a short video about what the environment and nature means to them. Winners will be announced during the American Conservation Film Festival’s (ACFF) 15th annual festival in Shepherdstown, West Virginia, October 13 – 15 and 20 – 22, 2017. Grand prize is $250 and an iPad mini, and $100 cash prizes are offered in four age group categories. Selected videos will be featured on ACFF’s Vimeo channel, website, social media sites, and possibly at the festival itself. Submission deadline is September 1, 2017.
Visit the website to learn more about submission guidelines.
Chef Ann Foundation Project Produce Grants
The Chef Ann Foundation has teamed up with Skoop, a performance nutrition brand, to launch Project Produce: Fruit and Veggie Grants for Schools. These $2,500 grants help schools increase kids’ access to fresh fruits and veggies and nutrition education. Any district or independent school that participates in the National School Lunch Program is eligible to apply. Grants are determined on an ongoing basis depending on available funding. More information about grant requirements and submitting a proposal can be found on their website.
Constellation E2 Energy to Educate Grant Program
Constellation E2 Energy to Educate grants inspire students to think differently about energy. Through this unique grant program, Constellation has offered over 100,000 students in grades 6-12 and college opportunities to enhance their understanding of science and technology, and experience problem-solving today’s and tomorrow’s energy challenges.
Constellation is seeking proposals for hands-on projects which engage 100 or more students, within the following themes:
- Energy in Transportation
- Backyard Generation
- Zero Waste
Grant awards are up to $25,000 for grades 6-12 and up to $50,000 for colleges and universities. Applications must be submitted online by October 1, 2017. Grant awards will be announced in November 2017 during American Education Week.
FirstEnergy STEM Classroom Grants
FirstEnergy proudly supports classroom projects and teacher professional development initiatives focusing on science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). One of the ways they support these activities is by offering STEM education grants of up to $1,000 to educators at schools and youth groups in communities served by its electric operating companies, other areas where they have facilities, and where they do business. More than 1,000 educators and youth group leaders have received classroom grants since the program began during the 1986-87 school year. Applications for the 2017 – 2018 school year are now available and must be submitted by September 22, 2017.
GetEdFunding is a curated collection of grants and awards created by education professionals for education professionals. Its database was designed to be easy-to-use and reliable, and all grant and funding opportunities are updated daily. Users can search by six criteria, including 43 areas of focus, 8 content areas, and 14 twenty-first century themes and skills, including environmental literacy. Once registered on the site, users can save grants of interest and return to them at any time.
The Lowe’s Toolbox for Education grant program is funded by the Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation, which has supported thousands of grassroots community and school projects in the communities where Lowe’s does business. Now in its 11th year of helping build better schools and communities, the Lowe’s Toolbox for Education program has provided over $49 million to more than 11,000 schools across the country. The Fall 2017 grant cycle opens on August 7, 2017. Visit the website to learn more about past grant recipients, view sample projects, and download a pre-application checklist.
Toshiba America Foundation Grants
Do you teach in an elementary school classroom? Do you have an innovative idea for improving math or science instruction in your classroom? Is your idea project-based learning with measurable outcomes? What do you need to make learning math and science fun for your students?
K-5 teachers are invited to apply online for a $1,000 Toshiba America Foundation grant to help bring an innovative hands-on project into their own classroom. With a Toshiba America Foundation grant, elementary teachers can bring their best new teaching ideas to life.
Grant applications are due on October 1st each year.
Grants are also available for teachers in grades 6-12 who are passionate about making science and mathematics more engaging for their students. Applications for grants less than $5,000 are accepted at any time. For grant requests of more than $5,000, application deadlines are February 1 and August 1 (or first business day of February and August).