Frequently Asked Questions about Environmental Education and Learning about the Environment
Need an answer to a question? Check out the FAQs below. If you do not find the answer to your question, please submit your question to us here.
- I need more information on environmental issues for a homework assignment or project. Where should I look?
You can see various environmental subjects in our homework resources area.
- Does the EPA give out awards to students?
Yes, we have a program called the President's Environmental Youth Awards (PEYA). It recognizes young people across America for projects that show their commitment to the environment. To be considered for PEYA, a student or students, sponsored by an adult, must submit to their local EPA regional office evidence of a completed project, as well as a completed application. It's open to young people in all 50 states and the U.S. territories.
- How can I find out about job openings and internships at the EPA?
If you are interested in helping us protect the global environment for this generation and generations to come, we invite you to explore our Careers website.
- Where can I find information about Community Service Projects?
Check out the Community Service page.
- I am a teacher and I would like to get training in environmental education.
EPA has a program to support environmental education training for teachers and other education professionals. You can learn more about the National Environmental Education Training Program.
- What is Earth Day and where can I find more information?
- Where can I learn more about environmental education?
Visit EPA's Education website.
- Where can I find more information about environmental education grants?
Visit the EPA environmental education grants web page to learn more about EE grants.
- I would be interested in any free materials (teacher resources or curriculum) you could send me.
Rather than just sending out packets of materials, we prefer to let you select what you'd like to receive. Fortunately, there are some excellent resources online for doing just that.
EPA publications are available free of charge through the The National Service Center for Environmental Publications. Use the suggested search terms below or use the order forms for teachers to quickly see materials available by age group. Suggested search terms: activity, coloring book, lesson plan, teachers, students, kids.
- What are the linking criteria for having a website linked from these pages?
Our quality requirements (How we evaluate the sites we link to:)
- Does it fit EPA's mission? The topic must support EPA's mission to protect human health and the environment.
- The site provides good, quality environmental education. We expect the content we link to will follow the guidelines set forth in the 1996 Environmental Education Materials: Guidelines for Excellence published by the North American Association for Environmental Education.Exit
- We link to EPA content first and foremost, but we will consider links to sites from other sources if their information is essential to fill a gap on our sites.
- We will not link to a site if it:
- Contains advertising or advocacy.
- Fails to identify the source of the site (what individual or organization produces it or is responsible for it) clearly on the site's home page.
- Links to sites which are not factual and neutral (This would exclude a site which is itself neutral but links to a radical or opinion-based site).
- Is clearly out of date.
- Doesn't protect children's privacy (in accordance with the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act).
- Is it appropriate for the audience? The item has to be age-appropriate and a useful educational tool for the intended audience. We take into account reading level and various indicators of a site's complexity.
- Is it easy to use and engaging? The site must be easy to use, well organized, and simple to navigate. You should not have to read a lot of instructions in order to use it effectively. There should be adequate explanations and instructions.
- The site should look polished and attractive. It should appeal to the target audience.
- Special considersations for Teachers section: Curriculum materials must contain certain basic information so they'll be useful for educators. They should have background, vocabulary, and age or grade level.
- Does it promote critical and creative thinking?
- It should present topics, problems and references so that people who use them understand the topics' importance, develop questions, and explore the answers. This exploration can include developing and implementing activities and experiments to answer questions, doing additional research using other resources, conducting interviews, and posing further questions.
- Students develop critical thinking skills as they acquire the knowledge and skills to identify and understand the components of a topic, put information together in a meaningful way, determine the positive and negative aspects of solutions, consider a variety of value systems and make choices with an understanding of the range of consequences that will result.
- Students develop creative thinking skills with activities that enable them to ask questions, explore new solutions, and revise their thinking to accommodate newly acquired knowledge. Such activities also incorporate an acceptance of different views or approaches to problems and reward effort as well as success.
- We link to materials which encourage users to arrive at their own conclusions instead of advocating one way of thinking (e.g., no finger pointing at polluters).