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                      United States
                      Environmental Protection
                      Agency
                              Office of Communications,
                              Education, and Media Relations
                              (1704)
EPA-171-F-98-017
August 1998
Getting   Involved  in
Environmental  Education
Things  Educators Can  Do
1.  Educate yourself about the environment and
   environmental education
   A few suggestions:

     - Search the World Wide Web (WWW) for
      environmental education information and
      resource materials
      Get copies of environmental education
      publications from EPA and state and local
      agencies and organizations in your state
      Obtain environmental education materials that
      have been highly rated using the field's guide-
      lines or conduct your own evaluation using these guidelines
      Contact teachers, education officials, nonprofit organizations, state agencies, and others to
      find out what environmental education efforts are already underway in your community
      Participate in  environmental education professional development opportunities (e.g.,
      teacher education workshops)
      Visit local museums, parks, nature centers, zoos, aquariums, and botanical gardens for
      exhibits, lectures, or special events focused on environmental issues
      Enroll in classes that teach about the environment
      Find out about local environmental issues by participating in community meetings and events
      Join a national or state environmental education professional association and attend their
      conferences

2.  Teach about the environment in your school or community
   A few suggestions:

      Work with teachers, school officials, community organizations, state agencies, and others to
      help you design an environmental education course or program in your school or
      community
      Invite local university professors and researchers to visit your classroom to talk about
      local and global environmental issues
      Look for award programs and contests that will engage your students in learning about
      the environment
      Search for grants and other funding opportunities from state and federal agencies,
      foundations, and private companies to support  your teaching efforts

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3.  Use environmental education to improve
    education

    A few suggestions:

      Tie classroom learning to real-life experiences
       about local or other broader environmental issues
      Use investigative, hands-on/minds-on,
       student-centered, and cooperative learning
       instructional methods that actively engage the
       learner in local environmental issues
      Use a local or broader environmental issue to
       develop the learner's critical thinking, problem
       solving, and effective decision-making skills
      Develop or adapt an interdisciplinary curriculum
       which uses the environment as an integrating
       context for teaching across all subject areas (e.g.,
       science, language arts,  and the social sciences)
      Use environmental education to meet national and
       state standards (e.g., in math, science, and social
       studies) which emphasize inquiry and assessment
      Use environmental education materials that are
       consistent with the field's environmental education
       guidelines and correlate these materials to your
       state's or school district's academic standards (or
       obtain copies of existing correlations)
      Use the field's learner outcome guidelines to
       assist you in determining what environmental
       concepts to teach at specific grade levels and
       how to correlate these guidelines to your state's
       or school district's academic standards

4.  Communicate the educational benefits of
    environmental education to your  colleagues and
    education  decision-makers

    A few suggestions:

      * Invite other educators and education
       decision-makers into your classroom or community
       to share information and resource materials
       Make presentations to your school departments
       or at faculty meetings, "back-to-school" nights,
       and school fairs
       Look for award programs and contests that
       enable you to communicate the  successes of
       your program to others
       Introduce environmental education to your
       professional education association or support its
       existing efforts by writing an article for their
       newsletter or giving a presentation at their
       conferences
A Few Suggestions on People and
Organizations to Contact

Environmental Education World Wide Web Sites
   EE-Link contains EE information and resources
    and links to other EE sites  ().
   EdGateway provides information and promotes
    discussions on math, science, and ties between
    environmental education and education reform
    (< http: //www. edgateway. net >).
   EPA's Office of Environmental Education
    (OEE) web site provides information about
    EPA's EE programs  (); the EPA web site contains
    additional educational pages for kids, students,
    and teachers ().
   The ERIC Clearinghouse on Science, Math,
    and Environmental Education web site
    provides summary information on resources in
    their clearinghouse ().

EPA Environmental Education Publications
   EPA's Office of Environmental Education has
    a list of some EE publications which are free to
    the public. Obtain the list by contacting OEE at
    202-260-4965 or visiting  OEE's web site at
    .  Many of these
    EE publications can be obtained by contacting
    the National Center for Environmental
    Publications and Information at 800-490-9198
    or ordering on line at .

Environmental Education Guidelines
   The North American Association for
    Environmental Education (NAAEE) is
    developing EE guidelines for educational
    materials, learner outcomes for grades K-12, and
    educator preparation.  Also, they have published
    "EE Collection:  A Review of Resources for
    Educators, Volumes 1, 2,  and 3" which apply the
    materials guidelines  to widely available EE
    materials. A companion volume tided "The
    Biodiversity Collection: A Review of Resources
    for Educators" has been produced by the World
    Wildlife Fund  (WWF), in association with
    NAAEE, to highlight exemplary educational
    materials that focus  on biodiversity and related
    issues. Visit the NAAEE, EPA OEE, and WWF
    web sites for information on the guidelines and
    how to obtain copies of various publications
     (,  ,  and ).

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   Project Learning Tree, Project WET, and
    Project WILD have developed correlations
    between their EE materials and some national
    and state academic standards.  Contact Tess Erb,
    Project Learning Tree, 202-463-2457 (phone),
    elizabeth_erb@plt.org (E-mail), or
      (WWW site); Sandra
    DeYounge, Project WET, 406-994-1913 (phone),
    rwwsr@montana.edu (E-mail), or
    
    (WWW site); and Gwyn Rowland Rozzelle,
    Project WILD, 301-527-8900 (phone),
    natpwild@igc.apc.org (E-mail), or
      (WWW site).

Professional Development Opportunities
   The Environmental Education and Training
    Partnership (EETAP), funded by EPA, is a
    consortium of nearly a dozen organizations and
    universities that delivers EE training to
    education professionals across the country.
    EETAP is managed by NAAEE and includes
    partners such as Project Learning Tree, Project
    WILD, and Project WET.  Contact EETAP,
    202-884-8828  (phone), questions@eetap.org
    (E-mail), or  (WWW site).

Environmental Education Programs at the State Level
   The National Environmental Education
    Advancement Project (NEEAP) supports the
    development of EE strategic plans and
    comprehensive programs in 26 states. Contact
    Abby Ruskey, 715-346-4179 (phone), aruskey
    @uwsp.edu (E-mail), or  (WWW site).
   The State Education and Environment
    Roundtable (SEER) supports state department
    of education EE efforts in 12 states, especially
    schools that use the environment to integrate its
    curriculum.  Contact Dr. Gerald Lieberman,
    619-676-0272 (phone), gerald@seer.org (E-
    mail), or  (WWW site).

National and State Environmental Education Associations
   NAAEE is an association of professional
    environmental educators. For membership
    information, contact Janet Thoreen,
    937-676-2514  (phone), jthoreen@erinet.com
    (E-mail), or   (WWW site).
    In addition, NAAEE has a State Affiliates
    Program which is a network of 54 state and
    provincial EE associations across the U.S. and
    Canada. This program can assist you in locating
    an EE contact in your state.  For State Affiliates
    Program information, contact David Starnes,
    202-884-8942 (phone) or dstarnes@aed.org
    (E-mail).
   The National Association for Interpretation
    (NAI) is an association of professional
    interpreters. NAI includes  an Environmental
    Education Section. Contact NAI at
    970-484-8283 (phone) or
     (WWW site).

Conservation and Other Organizations
   National conservation organizations, such as the
    World Wildlife Fund, National Audubon
    Society, World Resources Institute, Nature
    Conservancy, National Wildlife Federation
    (NWF), and others, have information and
    programs on various environmental issues,
    training opportunities, and educational materials.
    NWF's Conservation Directory is a useful
    resource for getting information about these and
    other conservation organizations (800-477-5560).
   The Association of Zoos and Aquariums
    (AZA) has a listing of more than 180
    accredited institutions that offer programs and
    materials on environmental topics. Contact
    AZA at  301-907-7777 or a zoo  or aquarium in
    your community.

Funding Opportunities
   EPA's Office of Environmental Education
    provides grants to support EE programs.
    Contact Diane Berger, 202-260-8619 (phone),
    berger.diane@epamail.epa.gov (E-mail), or
     (WWW site).
   The National Environmental Education and
    Training Foundation (NEETF) provides
    challenge grants to support EE projects.
    Contact Michelle Harvey at 202-628-8200
    (phone), harvey@neetf.org (E-mail), or
      (WWW site).
   Resources for Global Sustainability, Inc.
    publishes an annual "Directory of Environmental
    Grantmaking Foundations" which contains
    information on private foundations that fund
    environmental  projects (800-724-1857).
   Some  state natural resource and education
    agencies offer grants for environmental
    education projects.  Contact your state agency
    for more information.

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