Resources
Resources for at Home Learning

Resources

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.

Our education staff is creating and curating a library of resources to support environmental learning while we’re all at home. Below you’ll find a few of our top picks to use with your students or your family. Please bookmark this page and check back for regular updates. Happy learning!

Elementary School Resources | Middle School Resources | High School Resources | All Grades | Teacher Resources | Family Resources


Elementary School

NEW! At-Home Certification Kit

WGS has created an AtHome Certification Kit that educators and Green Team leaders are able to use as they see fit. This Kit provides students with step by step instructions for how to get certified as well as hands-on activities to deepen understanding of climate change. Students are not required to complete the entire Kit in order to get certified. In order to certify, students must complete an athome action project, fill in the Carbon Calculator Tool with the help of their teacher, and submit a report card.

NEW! Carbon Calculator Tool with At-Home Component

Many carbon-reducing projects that you do at school can also be done in your home to reduce your energy, water, and waste footprint. The At-Home Carbon Calculator Tool calculates these savings for you.

WGS Garden Explorations

In WGS’ Garden Explorations activity, students in grades K through 5 can practice their math and writing skills while learning more about gardens and how plants grow. Download and print our grades K-2 and 3-5 versions in both English and Spanish.

WGS Virtual Race to Decomposition

What makes an apple core decompose? To find out join WGS’ “Race to Decomposition” – a simple investigation using everyday materials from home. Through weekly online lessons, we’ll race against time and explore factors that affect decomposition.

WGS Waste Adventures

This activity is suitable for students in grades 3 through 6 and curious learners of all ages! In WGS’ Waste Adventures, students practice their math and writing skills while learning more about where their waste goes after it leaves their home. Download and print a copy today.

WGS Nature Scavenger Hunt

Here’s an activity that connects elementary school students with nature and reinforces Washington’s science standards. In our Nature Scavenger Hunt, students make observations of nature while getting fresh air in the neighborhood. Download and print our grades K-2 and 3-5 versions.

What Can We Do With All This Stuff?

These resources consist of four or five 45-minute lessons focused on the idea of “zero-waste.” Students will ponder how they are able to be part of the solution rather than part of the problem. Students will also be introduced to the habits of a Systems Thinker: considers how mental models after current reality and the future, changes perspective to increase understanding, uses understanding of system structure to identify possible leverage actions, and recognizes the impact of time delays when exploring cause and effect relationships.

Ecosystems Survey

In this activity from the Pacific Science Center, students will learn about transects and use their observation skills to produce scientific sketches and observations about a particular area in an ecosystem. Students can observe the ecosystems that exist at their local park or in their own backyard.

At-Home Upcycled Projects From Climate Superstars

This webpage from the National Environmental Education Foundation introduces the idea of upcycling and provides step-by-step instructions to bring new purpose to common, household items.

Project Hero Pollinator Quest

Project Hero Pollinator Quest 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 need help. 

National Geographic’s Investigate the Water Cycle Resources

These standards-aligned resources from the Captain Planet Foundation will help teachers and guardians engage their students in the water cycle. Lessons and activities provide opportunities to learn about condensation, evaporation, precipitation, and weather patterns that are all affected by, and a part of, the water cycle.


Middle School

NEW! At-Home Certification Kit

WGS has created an AtHome Certification Kit that educators and Green Team leaders are able to use as they see fit. This Kit provides students with step by step instructions for how to get certified as well as hands-on activities to deepen understanding of climate change. Students are not required to complete the entire Kit in order to get certified. In order to certify, students must complete an athome action project, fill in the Carbon Calculator Tool with the help of their teacher, and submit a report card.

NEW! Carbon Calculator Tool with At-Home Component

Many carbon-reducing projects that you do at school can also be done in your home to reduce your energy, water, and waste footprint. The At-Home Carbon Calculator Tool calculates these savings for you.

WGS Ideas for Student Action (Interactive PDF)

Ideas for Student Action is an interactive resource designed just for middle school students. In this activity, students can take what they have learned over the school year and apply it to take environmental action in their homes and communities. Students can create a climate-friendly recipe, contribute to citizen science, and more! Download the file as an interactive pdf or view it in the browser to take action today.

What Makes Birds Unique?: All About Feathers

This resource provides students an in-depth view of birds and their feathers. It describes what makes birds and their anatomy unique. Students engage in an interactive experience.

Educational Documentaries from Netflix

This Netflix documentary series (available for free on YouTube) explores the world around us. It delves into ecosystems, animals, and a variety of different topics. The videos range from 45 to 90 minutes. Be sure to check the ratings before sharing it with students.

If Trees Could Talk

This is an 11-module middle school curriculum from the Forest History Society that allows students and teachers to engage in social studies activities based upon archival materials. These modules cover topics such as how Native Americans and European Settlers managed forest landscapes, the significance of private forests in society, the role of wood in America’s industrial revolution, the history of wildlife policy, and what it means for the environmental movement. This curriculum is correlated with National History and Social Studies Standards.

Oil Spill Clean-Up Activity

In this hands-on activity from the Pacific Science Center, students will have the opportunity to learn about oil spills and the different methods of cleaning oil. Students will test different materials to see which help to clean oil spills most effectively.

How Natural Areas Filter Water Activity

Middle school students can learn about the value of clean, fresh water through hands-on learning. In this activity from the U.S. Green Building Council’s Learning Lab, students examine the difference between natural and paved areas in filtering water and discover how humans impact the water cycle.


High School

NEW! At-Home Certification Kit

WGS has created an AtHome Certification Kit that educators and Green Team leaders are able to use as they see fit. This Kit provides students with step by step instructions for how to get certified as well as hands-on activities to deepen understanding of climate change. Students are not required to complete the entire Kit in order to get certified. In order to certify, students must complete an athome action project, fill in the Carbon Calculator Tool with the help of their teacher, and submit a report card.

NEW! Carbon Calculator Tool with At-Home Component

Many carbon-reducing projects that you do at school can also be done in your home to reduce your energy, water, and waste footprint. The At-Home Carbon Calculator Tool calculates these savings for you.

Water Conservation and Wildlife Ecosystems

This curriculum is designed to introduce students to the importance of water and the role it plays in supporting life and impacting the planet. The activities are able to be completed in the classroom or independently at home. Activities for each day of the week build upon previous activities and knowledge gained. The learning activities offer a variety of tasks that involve art, writing, and safe field exploration. These lesson plans support NGSS Performance Expectations across various disciplines and K-12 Integrated Environmental and Sustainability Standards.

We The Future: Believe Families Belong Together

This lesson from Amplifier includes conversations and lessons on immigration and issues surrounding family separation at the US-Mexican border. Students will learn about a coalition of nearly 250-organizations who have joined together to fight against family separation at the border. The coalition is called Families Belong Together. Students will also learn about which countries immigrants are coming to the US from and look at some murals.

Birds of North America

This resource from Topic includes 21 videos about Birds of North America. Jason Ward, an avid birdwatcher, leads the viewers through a variety of birdwatching activities and experiences.

Wenatchee Naturalist

Wenatchee Naturalist provides a bevy of resources about the shrub-steppe ecosystem, dry montane forests, various aquatic ecosystems, and more. Also included are tools and guides for plants, reptiles/amphibians, birds, and mammals. This resource is best suited for secondary students.

Explore the Connections between COVID-19 and Climate Change

High school students can explore the connections between COVID-19 and climate change and discuss them. Ask high schoolers to read this article from Scientific American and/or this one from Harvard’s School of Public Health, and ask them what they think, either online or at home.


All Grades


Zinn Education Project: Climate Justice Teaching Activities

Resources designed to educate students of all ages about climate change and inequalities. This resource from the Zinn Education Project provides a variety of activities that can be filtered by grade level.

NatureBridge Nature Activities

Bring the science and wonder of the natural world right to your home with these activities from NatureBridge! These are hands-on, interactive lessons that allow students to engage with the natural world in a safe and thoughtful way. These resources include games and challenges, at-home activities, and a real-time curriculum project. These resources include tools for students from 1st through 12th grade.


Teacher Resources


Birds, Bees, and Butterflies: Pollinators All Around Us! 

This virtual PD on June 24-26 from 9 am-noon is for elementary school teachers. It explores the diversity of pollinators in our own communities. Over the course of three, four-hour sessions, participants will learn about pollinators and how to share the importance of pollinators in our ecosystem and in our food system.


Family Resources

Learning in Places

Funded through the National Science Foundation, Learning in Places works to develop culturally and community relevant, field-based learning for students and their families. This work is through a partnership among the University of Washington Bothell Goodlad Institute for Educational Renewal, Northwestern University School of Education and Social Policy, Tilth Alliance and Seattle Public Schools. The project focuses on sustainable gardens and reflects the Next Generation Science Standards. This resource provides activities where students explore socio-ecological systems in their neighborhoods by participating in “wondering walks,” asking questions, making observations, developing modeling, conducting investigations, collecting data and more.