At Home Environmental Education
How do we stay connected to Mother Earth and our more than human companions during a time when we as a society are practicing social distancing? Natural…
Join TEDEd Earth School as they celebrate Earth Day and World Environment Day by embarking on a month of daily adventures. These quests consist of nature-focused content and environmental adventures for learners of all ages, curated by environmental experts from organizations such as National Geographic, WWF and the BBC. While this initiative is online, each quest will have students deeply engaged and discovering more about nature as they further connect with Mother Earth and their environment.
EcoSchools, in collaboration with the Environmental and Sustainability Education Initiative at OISE - University of Toronto, continue to hold webinars in order to shift environmental education online during this time of stillness. Topics discussed include climate change education, outdoor education and nature journaling. Be sure to check out their website for future webinar dates and topics, as well as information on how you can access previously recorded webinars!
National Geographic has collaborated with Disney to create easily accessible and free virtual drawing lessons. Click on the link to join professional animators as they take you through the steps of how to draw various animals such as koalas, bears and whales. Be sure to put your finished products up on your window to contribute to the National Geographic Neighbourhood Safari in celebration of Earth Month!
In this article, Richard Louv, the author of Last Child in the Woods and the co-founder of the Children & Nature Network, describes 10 nature activities that can be done with your family during this time of social distancing. Click the link to learn about ideas like backyard (or living room) camping, setting up a world-watching window and becoming an electronic wildlife watcher!
Sketching is fantastic way to practice stillness, connect to nature and can be done from the comfort of your own home. With spring beginning it is also a great time to notice changes in your local nature. What do your kids notice about the changing nature around them, what do they wonder about? Click the link for a lesson from The Bateman Foundation to find out how you can use sketching to inspire observation and and appreciation of the natural world!
This digital resource was created to support all of the students, parents and teachers who are adapting to their various e-learning situations - the new normal. The resource has Earth Day quizzes, lessons to help build a pollinator garden and ideas on how to commemorate Earth Day from home while practicing social distancing. While Earth Day is celebrated on April 22, we believe that every day is Earth Day. Click the link to learn more about Earth Day activities you can do everyday from home!
The Anthropocene Education Program (EN/FR) is designed for students grades 4-12 and covers a range of topics including climate change and species extinction. It's an opportunity for students to learn about the science behind the Anthropocene, the new geological epoch, and the impact that human beings have on Mother Earth. The program incorporates immersive technology, such as virtual reality, and media to further engage students in their learning about various human-environment interactions.
Gillian Judson's "A Walking Curriculum: Evoking Wonder and Developing Sense of Place" is a collection of 60 interdisciplinary walks appropriate for students K-12. It reflects principles and practices of Imaginative Ecological Education as it offers walking activities that engage student imagination and cultivate emotional connection with place. These walks can be done through the neighbourhood, in the backyard or even in your home! Click the link to learn more and to get 5 free sample walks.
Have you been wondering how to integrate DPA into your daily routine with your children? Created by the Northern Sport Culture and Recreation District, this resource is a collection of traditional Indigenous games and activities that reconnect children to recreational and sport activities that reflect the rich cultural heritage of many Indigenous peoples across Canada. It includes several activities that connect children with nature, while also strengthening their sense of culture and tradition.
IBBY Canada has created a catalogue of 100 recommended Indigenous picture books, all of which are written by Indigenous authors, published in Canada and are currently in print. This time of stillness in the great indoors is the perfect opportunity to scroll through this resource to find books that connect to environmental education and Indigenous ways of knowing. Check out the catalogue for ideas on ways to bring Indigenous content into your home, or virtually into your classroom space!
Outdoor educators at Toronto Outdoor Education Schools (Toronto District School Board) have put together a list of outdoor education related lessons that can be done from the comfort of your own home or your local nature. You can filter the lessons by division, subject and activity location to find an appropriate activity that is sure to spark students' natural curiosity. You can further engage them by letting them pick their activity! Click the link to discover more about this amazing resource.
Join University of Toronto Mississauga professor Dr. Marc Johnson, director of the Centre for Urban Environments, and his kids Mae and Oscar as they talk about backyard biology! So far, they have explored creepy crawlies, looked for early signs of spring and discussed how to combat invasive plant species that grow in your backyard. Be sure to subscribe to their Youtube channel, and keep checking back as they continue to upload more videos!
Through the National Geographic Explorer Classroom, explorers are bringing the wonder of the natural world right to your at home computer screen. Gather your family and join cutting edge scientists and researchers across all seven continents as they discuss a variety of topics that are sure to spark your child's natural curiosity!
Project Learning Tree is an environmental education program designed for educators and parents who are interested in using the environment to engage students in learning, both indoors and outdoors! Check out some of the nature activities that they have outlined, which can be done with your family right from your own backyard!
The Gould Lake Outdoor Centre staff have created outdoor education lesson plans that can be done from home with your K-8 students during this time of stillness. The lesson plans also include information on how they each connect back to the Ontario curriculum. Click the link to browse and download these plans, or simply to get some ideas of ways to further engage your students from home!