Project Green Schools, projectgreenschools.org/racefortheplanethomeedition/
Virtual home edition, Race for the Planet is made up of a series of challenges for students to participate in and compete to show and make an impact with their environmental knowledge and creativity. Rolling Registration April – June 2020.
Understanding and Calculating Carbon Footprints
A carbon footprint is the total amount of greenhouse gases (including carbon dioxide and methane) that are generated by our actions.
Sustainability Lessons & Activities
Green Schools National Network, greenschoolsnationalnetwork.org/resources/
Green Schools National Network(GSNN) has assembled a selection of age-appropriate lessons from their PD Collaborative Partners and others that are well-suited for virtual learning. They have vetted lessons against a set of criteria that they developed that looks at aspects such as deeper learning, 21st century skill building, authenticity, and sustained inquiry using a real-world context. Their Collaborative Partners also have a variety of lessons that may not have been added to the GSNN website, if there is an area of further interest, explore the Partners own websites to check them out further.
City Nature Challenge, Explore & Document Local Biodiversity, citynaturechallenge.org/participate/
Invented by citizen science staff at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County (Lila Higgins) and California Academy of Sciences (Alison Young). The City Nature Challenge is an effort for people to find and document plants and wildlife (using a smartphone) in cities across the globe. Use their resources to document your local biodiversity in whatever way you can. By participating in the City Nature Challenge, not only do you learn more about your local nature, but you can also make your city a better place – for you and other species!
United States Green Building Council, Center for Green Schools, learninglab.usgbc.org/programs/distance-and-home-learning-lessons-and-resources
Parents, grandparents, and teachers can all have fun with the newly launched resources on Learning Lab to support sustainability awareness and learning while away from school. Organized by grade level, it’s easy to find lessons perfect for your kiddos. Majority of these are free.
Green Apple Day of Service, greenapple.org/
Start the planning process of having a Green Apple Day of Service project for your school upon returning. Join an international movement of over a million volunteers in 80 countries to celebrate the central role that schools play in preparing the next generation of global leaders in sustainability.
Project Learning Tree
Conservation curriculum organization that has assembled a list of free family learning activities and Earth Day activities that can be completed at home—both inside and close-by in a safe space outside.
North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE), https://naaee.org/our-work/programs/covid-19-resources-tips-and-support
This site includes a list of resources designed to keep learners of all ages interested and engaged during the crisis, from hands-on activities and lesson plans to websites, virtual tours, and more. We encourage you to take part in the discussion forum and comment on the resources that are most helpful to you and let us know about any others that you would recommend. And please share stories about what you’re doing that’s working!
Strategic Energy Innovations (SEI), https://www.energizeschools.org/distancelearning.html
SEI shares distance learning resources to help continue providing learning opportunities for students. The SEI team is available and here as a resource to support students and teachers.
*Resources are designed for 9th-12th grade students, but can be adapted for 6th-8th grade students.
Explore the Captain Planet Foundation’s recommended resources for learning at home! Filter by grade band, topic, and type of activity.
World Wildlife Fund
explore.panda.org/youth-at-home Activities to do at home for youth.
wwf.panda.org/knowledge_hub/teacher_resources/ Variety of resources and project ideas for students and teachers.
www.worldwildlife.org/teaching-resources/toolkits/food-waste-warrior-toolkit, The food waste warrior toolkit provides lessons, activities and resources to share how what we eat and what we throw away impacts our planet by creating a classroom in the cafeteria. There is a home lesson plan that students can use in their own kitchen with track food waste and reviewing food waste issues.
KidScoop News, Earth tips activity packet.
Monterey Bay Aquarium, https://www.montereybayaquarium.org/for-educators/curriculum-and-resources
Explore our guided activities for parents, caregivers and teachers who need to keep kids educated and entertained at home. Includes: free online classes, apps, printables and webcam.
East Bay Regional Park, DistrictParks to people online
East Bay Regional Park District is committed to the idea of lifelong learning, helping people make their own discoveries about our parks. These resources are designed to be used at home, in a classroom, or part of any online learning. Use these resources to build your own learning opportunities.
Kids on the Bay, https://kidsforthebay.org/at-home-activities/
A wide variety of home activities that inspire and appreciate nature and the environmental and includes experiments.
Age Appropriate Eco Friendly Activities
Ages 4 & Up: Reduce Bird Collisions, Reduce Bird Collisions: https://tinyurl.com/w2m2vt8
Ages 7 & Up: Make a Bee Condo, Bee Condo: https://tinyurl.com/w2nsala
Ages 10 & Up: Plan an Invasive Species Clean-Up, Invasive Species Cleanup: https://tinyurl.com/vtfrqm8
Ages 12 & Up: Plan A Wildflower Garden, https://tinyurl.com/ur5fw7a
Ranger Rick, https://rangerrick.org
Free access to a variety of activities and projects to do at home.
Waste Reduction and Sorting
The Amazing Garbologist Adventure, How to Go from Scientist to Food Rescue Action Hero!
In this journal you will join four garbologists who ask questions about how garbage affects people living in Alameda County and around the world. What in the world is a garbologist? A garbologist is a scientist who studies garbage. Why study garbage? Because there is a LOT of it. And more is created every day!
Fridge Audit Activity, Find out how much food is going uneaten in your kitchen every week, plus easy ways to reduce it! stopfoodwaste.org
4R’s Curriculum, www.stopwaste.org/at-school/4rs-curriculum
Learning Lab, learninglab.usgbc.org/module/1037/995 and learninglab.usgbc.org/module/18099
Learn what makes up the most trash in your house and how that can be improved. A waste audit tutorial and tracking documents can be provided for students and parents to do together at home.
East Bay Depot for Creative Reuse
creativereuse.org/10-tutorials/, variety of reuse projects with tutorials.
creativereuse.org/educators-3/teacher-reuse-links/, teacher reuse links on reuse lesson plans, crafts, & activities.
Zero Waste Meal Ideas
Zero Waste Chef, zerowastechef.com/2018/05/02/15-creative-uses-food-scraps/
While at home with your family, get creative with a number of recipes that utilize typically wasted food (leek tops/fruit peels/potato skins/etc). Consider making it a fun community event by hosting a virtual cooking class or enjoy your end product with friends over a video call.
Science at Home
California Academy of Science, www.calacademy.org/academy-at-home
#MuseumFromHome with Academy @ Home! Whether you’re searching for STEM activities for the kids or just want to keep tabs on your favorite Academy creatures, we’ve curated an eclectic array of science-centric games, videos, and DIY projects to help you stay learning and engaged, wherever you are.
The Exploratorium, www.exploratorium.edu
Explore our vast collection of online experiences to feed your curiosity and education resources supporting online teaching and learning. Subscribe to our weekly newsletter and get fresh learning resources and virtual programming delivered to your inbox.
Lawrence Hall of Science, www.lawrencehallofscience.org/lawrence-at-home
On this site we will be sharing fun things for you to do at home or outdoors. Kids and families can look forward to exploring, investigating, discovering and inventing through DIY projects, meeting animal friends, science demonstrations and shows, astronomy and nature walks – PLUS, ways for parents to connect with each other and us.
National Science Teaching Association, www.nsta.org/
Free membership for a 30 day trial to educators to access 12,000 digital professional learning resources and tools.
National Center for Science Education, https://ncse.ngo/supporting-teachers/classroom-resources
NCSE gives science teachers the tools and skills they need to help their students overcome misconceptions and misinformation about climate change and evolution.
Engage with Science Apps
eBird – Learn about birds in your backyard or find current birding hotspots with this comprehensive birding website and app, Sycamore Grove Park and Shadow Cliffs Regional Park
iNaturalist – Connect with scientists around the world to help identify plants and animals in your community
Google Science Journal – A science notebook and set of tools for conducting interesting experiments with your phone
Globe Observer – Join an international network of community scientists to learn about our environment and the changing climate
Where our Food Comes From
The following FoodCorps Lessons have been developed for one adult (FoodCorps service member) to lead with groups of 25 students in a classroom or school garden. However, the lessons below include many activities that can be led by an individual with one or a small group of kids in a kitchen or backyard garden! All of these lessons can be adapted for ages 5-11 years old (Kindergarten to 5th grade). If lessons include a picture book that you don’t have, you can look up a “read aloud” version on the internet. Review the “Adaptation” section in each lesson for additional ideas! The full suite of 98 FoodCorps lessons are currently being updated, revised versions will be available on the FoodCorps website summer of 2020.
California Education and the Environment Initiative(EEI), The Dollars and Sense of Food Production, www.calrecycle.ca.gov/eei/unitdocs/grade02/242-243/242-243swff.pdf
Food production depends on the availability of limited natural resources. Decisions about what to produce and what to consume can be affected by the quality, quantity, and reliability of the resources provided by natural systems.
Captain Planet Foundation
Create a nutritious and delicious dish the whole family can enjoy ! Topic: Nutrition, Cooking, Virtual Class | Type: Online, Streaming Resource Back to All Resources Chef Asata Reid, Life…
Green America, www.greenamerica.org/food-climate/climate-victory-gardens/how-start-climate-victory-garden
The Covid-19 pandemic brings to light the importance of food security, resiliency planning and the equitable challenges of accessing food. If you have garden space at your home, consider planting a Victory Garden this April and share photos or videos using #virtualvictorygardens. This can also be a great way to learn more about the history of Victory Gardens.
National Wildlife Federation, Certified Wildlife Habitat, www.nwf.org/Garden-for-Wildlife/Certify
Anyone can create a welcoming haven for local wildlife. Turning your yard or balcony container garden into a Certified Wildlife Habitat® is fun, easy, and can make a lasting difference for wildlife.
Kids Gardening, kidsgardening.org/gardening-basics-indoor-gardening/
Using sunny windowsills, you can experiment with growing a wide range of plants, from houseplants and edible crops like radishes and lettuce. Kids get excited watching nature in action indoors and even better when they are plants you can eat!’
Project Hero, herofortheplanet.org/pollinators/ Project Hero is an online program of the Captain Planet Foundation that challenges youth to be heroes for species and ecosystems in trouble. The Pollinator Quest leads young people on a learning journey to explore the science concepts behind pollinators and pollination through the lens of a local species that needs help. The Quest culminates in the design and implementation of a hands-on project that helps that local pollinator species.
Detecting Decomposers, After the rain is the perfect time to take a walk and look for clues to decomposition. Bring a notebook for sketching or a camera for capturing and use your findings to create a photo journal of some of your neighborhood decomposers. Take care to observe carefully and watch for ants in rotting logs.
Life and Death with Decomposers, www.californiaeei.org/curriculum/unit?unitid=23, This unit focuses on decomposers and their role in breaking down matter.
School Garden Support Organization Network, www.sgsonetwork.org/covid/, Garden-based learning distance teaching resources
Audubon, Make Seed Balls to Grow New Life in Your Community, www.audubon.org/news/making-seed-balls-help-birds
Tired of your neighbor squirrels eating your freshly sown seeds? These seed balls are the answer you’ve been looking for! Once encased in a protective clay coating, your wildflower seeds can be sown by depositing the ball in any suitable locale.
Research Environmental Organizations
5 Gyres, www.5gyres.org
Plastic Pollution Coalition, www.plasticpollutioncoalition.org/
Surfrider Foundation, www.surfrider.org/
Project Drawdown, drawdown.org/
National Resource Recovery Fund (NRDC), www.nrdc.org/
World Wildlife Fund (WWF), www.worldwildlife.org/
Story Reading Time
Life read by Wanda Stewart, Garden Educator, Hoover Elementary Victory Garden, Oakland www.youtube.com/watch?v=HpaxFbiyzCk&feature=youtu.be&fbclid=IwAR2idR7bW0FTdKn_l614jnDeGGhv7duHYaV9erE6XSfQNS7x26tji22SA_0 Life grows, animals grow, what do you like about life? A beautiful honoring of Life on Earth with some commentary from this incredible educator making the message relative “[Life like right now…in this lockdown]” There is always something to love and something to protect…and when you feel down, trust the life around you to let you know that something is always changing – because life begins small and grows. There is a beautiful life. All the world is blooming. Love one another (and her dog!)
Stories read by celebrities, on-line read aloud book with teacher and parent activities
The Garbage Barge U read by Jason Theroux – Before everyone recycled…there was a town that had 3,168 tons of garbage and nowhere to put it. What did they do? Enter the Garbage Barge! This mostly true and completely stinky story is sure to make you say “Pee-yew!”
The Empty Pot read by Malik Remi With Truth & Persistence being esp. important in our current crisis this book shares how important it is through the story of a young boy that is rewarded for being persistent to grow (unknowingly) an infertile seed.
Carla’s Sandwich read by Allison Janney about how you can be unique, don’t yuck someone else’ yum, and a great way to do some reading comprehension while finding out and communicating what your family’s fickle palate is to reduce food waste with food being extra important in our Shelter In Place crisis. www.storylineonline.net/books/carlas-sandwich/
EARTH DAY EVERY DAY by Lisa Bullard and Xiao Xin-Earth Day Books for kids
Environmental and Climate Justice, selection of titles for children, young adults and educators,socialjusticebooks.org/booklists/environment/
Virtual Environmental Book Club
What better way to learn about a new environmental topic than read about it and discuss with your family or with a group of classmates and friends. EarthDay.org has compiled a list of adult level books but there are many other lists out there to reference.
Podcasts for Students
Watch Environmental Films and Videos
Environmental Film Festival, dceff.org/watchnow/
The Environmental Film Festival in the Nation’s Capital (DCEFF) is the world’s premier showcase of environmentally themed films. Due to the current epidemic, all of this year’s films are available online. This high-quality content seeks to celebrate Earth and inspire understanding and stewardship of the environment through the power of film.
5 Gyres, www.5gyres.org/trash-academy?mc_cid=b882b1dfa3&mc_eid=01275203cf
Sign up to receive updates and check in on their programs that have gone online with the NEW 5 Gyres Trash Academy! Learn all about the history of plastic and what you can do today for a cleaner planet and a plastic-free tomorrow.
Story of Stuff, www.storyofstuff.org/
A series of 9 videos to inspire and encourage the civic engagement of the more than one million members of our global Community. We invite you to be inspired by and share our movies, participate in our study programs, and take part in campaigns on the environmental and social issues you care about.
Mary Democker, Throw an Eco-Film Fest (In Your Living Room) www.marydemocker.com/throw-an-eco-film-fest-in-your-living-room/
Green Schools Listing of Environmental Videos, docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/19HvkjrIG1ZM9okyFes7ZbPjZnTtXA_ICOeap02BdNGk/edit#gid=0
Consider organizing a virtual documentary watch party and then host an online discussion with classmates, teachers, friends and family. See the wonderful list of 100+ documentaries organized by category to find one (or two, or three) to watch during Earth Month.
Mr, Eco, www.mreco.org, an environmentalist, an educator, an entrepreneur, a NARAS Grammy Voting musician, a YouTuber and a philanthropist has created a number of music videos that address key environmental issues with a strong message that You count in your actions with being a hero in your own efforts.
Join us live for our new Virtual Field Trips or watch them on demand later. Each no-cost Virtual Field Trip comes with a companion guide packed with standards-aligned, hands-on learning activities!
Tour a National Park virtually! Fly over volcanoes, kayak through icebergs, swim though a coral reef, and trek through a cave as you discover the hidden world of our national parks.
Castro Valley Unified Teacher Activity, docs.google.com/document/d/1SvIdgTx9djKO6SjyvPDsoGlkgE3iExmi3qh2KRRku_w/preview?fbclid=IwAR297gPHaji2KQDHpTFuU6Q4KfhZ1Q2e-4H56aAJp6e5r7AAdNddIl5vS0Y
Writing letters to representatives
Reach out to your state representatives to urge them to take action on climate change. This is a great way to promote sustainability at the state level and to actively engage in the civic process.