Make It Happen
1.2 million students spend their days in K-12 schools across Washington State. You can ensure they gain the skills and hands-on learning opportunities needed to be successful leaders. Our state depends upon the next generation… And Washington Green Schools is working with you to give them the tools they need to succeed.
Many young people lack a connection to the natural world around them, and native plants and animals are under threat from increasing urban development and climate change. By properly maintaining and incorporating school grounds and gardens into academic curricula, schools can capitalize on the many psychological, physical, and academic benefits that students gain from learning and playing in a natural outdoor environment.
Ideas for a Lasting Change
Create an accessible link between the classroom and the outdoors. Build trails that connect students to wilderness areas on campus. Incorporate kiosks that educate students about the wildlife and natural features on school grounds.
Cultivate an enriching outdoor learning environment. Create an outdoor classroom by planting trees in the schoolyard or building a native plant garden. Curb graffiti on school grounds by painting murals on buildings that have been tagged multiple times.
Combat runoff problems with native plants. Work with district landscape and maintenance teams to identify problem areas and plant native, drought-tolerant plants. Provide ongoing education about native plants to students and staff to connect the school community to its outdoor environment.
- School Grounds & Gardens Report Card
- School Grounds & Gardens Educator’s Guide
- School Grounds & Gardens Classroom Supplement
- Lesson Plans about gardens, food, and agriculture
- A Guide for Creating School Gardens as Outdoor Classrooms
- Strategies for water efficient and sustainable landscapes
- Rain Garden Handbook for Western Washington
- Learn how to make your own Exploding Seed Balls
- Learn how to make your own terrarium garden
- Play The Adventures of Vermi the Worm to learn about vermicomposting
- Play nature games on pbskids.org