Lesson Plans, Teacher Guides and Online Resources for Educators

Find an array of environmental and science based lesson plans, activities and ideas below from EPA, other federal agencies and external organizations. Encontrar recursos para estudiantes y maestros.

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AIRNOW
Get up-to-the-minute information about air pollution in your community, through a joint project from EPA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the National Park Service and other partners. The AIRNOW website includes maps, forecasts, and information about the health effects of air pollution.
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Website

Air Quality Resources 
Find air quality curriculum materials and activities from AIRNOW, including a toolkit and workshop opportunities for teachers.
Grades: K-8
Type of Resource: Curriculum guide 

Indoor Air Quality Tools for Schools
This site provides information on indoor air quality in school buildings and how to order the Tools for Schools Action Kit. The kit shows how to carry out a practical plan of action to improve indoor air quality at little or no cost using common-sense activities and in-house staff.
Grades: K-12
Type of Resource: Toolkit

Acid Rain: A teacher's guide for grades 6 through 8 (PDF 56 pp, 4.6 MB)
Lesson plans and activities for teachers on acid rain.
Grades: 6-8
Type of Resource: Lesson plan

Carl Gets Some Rest (PDF 12 pp, 765 KB)
This coloring and story book, for children in pre-school through 2nd grade, teaches a simple lesson: there are many transportation alternatives to using a car.
Grades: K-2
Type of Resource: Coloring Book

Noise Pollution for Kids (PDF 15 pp, 6.54 MB)
This booklet for your students will teach you how to identify which sounds are loud and ways to protect your hearing and health.
Grades: K-5
Type of Resource: Activity book

The Science of the Ozone Layer
Find links to articles that give overviews of ozone depletion, shorter pieces that focus on specific aspects of ozone depletion, international organizations that issue regular updates, as well as images and animations of ozone levels and ozone depletion.
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Website

Ozone: Good Up High, Bad Nearby
Ozone acts as a protective layer high above the Earth, but it can be harmful to breathe. This publication provides basic information about ground-level and high-altitude ozone.
Grades:6-12
Type of Resource: Booklet/Brochure

Plain English Guide to the Clean Air Act
A brief introduction to the 1990 version of the Clean Air Act, to help you understand what is in the law and how it may affect you.
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Booklet

RadTown USA
RadTown USA is a virtual community that aims to educate students about the sources of radiation in our daily lives.
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Virtual activity

Why is Coco Orange?
Coco has a problem. He is a chameleon, but he cannot change colors, and his asthma is acting up. Read how Coco and his friends at Lizard Lick Elementary solve this mystery as they learn about air quality and how to stay healthy when the air quality is bad.
Grades: Pre K-2
Type of Resource: Book

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Air Defenders - the Quest for Clean Air
Learn how burning garbage in the open air causes pollution and health problems. This site is aimed at students 10 and up. It presents alternatives to open burning (recycle, trash dump, reuse, compost). Students earn their Air Defender badge while pursuing their quest to clean the air and protect community health.
Grades: 6-8

Air Pollution, What's the Solution
An educational project for students that uses online real time data to guide student discovery of the science behind the causes and effects of outdoor air pollution. Through this project, students will focus on outdoor air pollution: what it is, what factors contribute to its formation, and the health effects from breathing polluted air. Students will use data and animated maps from the Internet and monitor for the presence of air pollution. Students are challenged to think critically and creatively about the problems surrounding air pollution.
Grades: 6-12

American Lung Association State of the Air Report
Want to learn about the air quality in your community? Read the American Lung Association's 'State of the Air' report to find out more.
Grades: 9-12

Clean Air Detective: Investigating Air Pollution 
In this lesson students will participate in a scientific inquiry activity regarding the air they breathe inside and around their house. They will plan and conduct a simple investigation to gather information on air quality. Students will also help to reduce air pollution by shutting off lights, toys, machines, and appliances and by reducing their travel in cars.
Grades: K-5
Type of resource:  Lesson Plan

Cool School Challenge 
The Cool School Challenge engages students and teachers in practical strategies to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gas emissions school-wide.
Grades: 3-12

Count Down Your Carbon
See how your choices can help stop climate change, track your individual reductions as well as the collective effort. Learn about simple actions that have real carbon reductions associated with them.
Grades: 9-12

Forces of Change Resources for Teachers 
These activities extend the themes and content of the exhibit Atmosphere: Change is in the Air to middle school students, their teachers, and families. Like the exhibit, the activities explore the importance of our atmosphere, its functions and chemistry, and how scientists are tracking changes in the atmosphere - changes that impact all life on the planet. The activities also explore how the atmosphere connects to our global climate system and every breath we take.
Grades: 6-12
Type of resource: Lesson Plans/Activities

In the Air Curriculum  
EPA funded the Missouri Botanical Garden's EarthWays Center to design and develop a full spectrum of environmental education materials on airborne toxics issues in their communities. The goal is to increase knowledge about air pollution and to make connections between behaviors and air quality. Five modules are available (K-3, 3-6, 6-8, 9-12 and adult).
Grades: K-12
Type of resource: Lesson Plans/Activities

PBS Kids' The Greens 
Using blogs and mini episodes starring characters to whom you can relate, this PBS Kids' website is full of fun interactive ways to get active on topics from green fashion to recycling.
Grades: 6-12

Mixing Ratios or Parts per Million, Billion
This serial dilution activity will help middle school or high school students understand the concepts of parts per million and parts per billion. There's also a student guide.
Grades: 6-9

NOAA's Education Resources Website
Explore this site to find the information you need to teach students about weather, climate change, and oceans. You'll find activities, background information, and much more!
Grades: 6-12

Science with NOAA Research: Teacher Information 
Online science lessons for students and teachers. Covers earth systems that have to do with the oceans and lakes: storms, El Nino, the atmosphere, and fisheries.
Grades: 9-12

A Student's Guide to Global Climate Change
Interactive website for students that includes basic information, a glossary of terms, and a footprint calculator tool.
Grades: 6-12
Type of Resource: Interactive website

Climate Change
Detailed information about climate change concepts and developments: what it is, what it can do, and what's being done about it. Access the Greenwire news service for Climate Change news and the U.S. Greenhouse Gas Inventory.
Grades: 6-12
Type of Resource: Website

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Climate Change, Wildlife, and Wildlands Toolkit: A toolkit for formal and informal educators
EPA, in partnership with the National Park Service and with input from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, developed a kit for use when talking with the public about how climate change is affecting our nation's wildlife and public lands.
Grades: all

NASA's Climate Kids
Geared toward students, the multimedia-rich Climate Kids site uses games, humorous illustrations and animations to help break down the important issue of climate change.
Grades: K-12

NOAA Education
Explore this site to find the information you need to teach students about weather, climate change, and oceans. You'll find activities, background information, and much more.
Grades: 6-12

Climate Change Education.org 
ClimateChangeEducation.org is supported by an organization of volunteers dedicated to education on climate change and global warming solutions. 
Grades: K-12

Climate Classroom 
What's up with global warming? National Wildlife Federation's ClimateClassroom.org offers realistic suggestions for becoming part of the global-warming solution.
Grades: K-12

Global Warming Facts and Our Future from the Koshland Science Museum
Explore the latest scientific information on global warming. Discover how a warmer climate might affect your life and what could be done to minimize the potentially harmful effects of climate change.
Grades: 6-12

Hippo Works: Save the Climate
Creative cartoons about global warming. 
Grades: K-5

America's Wetlands 
This site will give you a better understanding of the rich variety of wetlands, their importance, how they are threatened, and what can be done to conserve them for future generations.
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Website

Conservation Education Toolbox
The Educator Toolbox from the U.S. Forest Service is jam-packed with helpful resources to make your challenging job just a little easier. Here you will find background resources to help you understand forests and grasslands, professional development opportunities and resources, and a collection of great materials and programs organized by grade-level.
Grades: K-12
Type of Resource: Toolkit

Coral Reef Protection: What are coral reefs?
This site explores why coral reefs are important and what is being done to protect them and includes fact sheets on the topic.
Grades: 6-12
Type of Resource: Website

Estuaries
What is an estuary? Why are estuaries important? Why protect estuaries? Find basic information and more at this site.
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Website

Examining the Effects of Pollution on Ecosystems
A classroom activity to help students recognize that hazardous waste may have far-reaching impacts on ecosystems and that these impacts are not always easy to identify.
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Lesson plan

Exploring Estuaries
What are estuaries? Why are they important? This site provides introductory information for students of various ages and background information for teachers. Includes activities, games and a glossary.
Grades: 6-12
Type of Resource: Interactive website

Let's Go Outside Educator Materials
Why take your students outside? Simply put…because it can improve both classroom learning and classroom behavior. There is no doubt that as a teacher, you get pulled in many directions as you try to offer your students the best possible educational opportunities. It is a balancing act – you have to make some tough choices about how your students spend their time. Learn more about the Schoolyard Habitat Program from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
Grades: K-12
Type of Resource: Website

NASA Teaching Materials
Search NASA for teaching materials on: earth science, general science, history, math, physical science, and space science.
Grades: K-12
Type of Resource: Searchable database of teaching materials

Surf Your Watershed
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Database

Save Our Species: Endangered Species Coloring Book (PDF 3.21 MB, 28 pp)
Coloring book about endangered species
Grades: K-5
Type of Resource: Activity book

Stream Corridor Restoration Module
As part of EPA's Watershed Academy, this module provides an explanation of the structure of streams, their role in the environment, and discusses stream restoration.
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Training module

Wetlands Education
Everything you need to help your student understand wetlands and how they fit into the water cycle and the environment. A portal site of links to activities, curriculum, education programs, resources and teaching tools to assist you in wetlands and habitat education.
Grades: K-12
Type of Resource: Website

A World in Our Backyard
This guide is a resource of information and activities about wetlands including ways to study wetland characteristics, why wetlands are important, and how students and teachers can help protect a local wetland.
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Curriculum guide

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Action Bioscience 
Learn about current topics in bioscience through this wide range of articles by scientists, science educators, and science students. Site also provides original lessons and resources to enhance bioscience teaching.
Grades: 9-12

Adventures of the Agronauts 
A science curriculum with a space biology theme for elementary grade level students.
Grades: K-5

Adopt A Tree 
Discover different kinds of trees through the senses.
Grades: K-5
Subtopic: ecosystems
Type of resource:  Lesson plans

ARKive 
Using the power of wildlife imagery, ARKive's mission is to promote a greater understanding of global biodiversity, and the conservation of the world's most threatened species.
Grades: K-12

Audubon Nature Activities 
Connect with nature with these fun crafts!
Grades: K-12

Bird Populations 
Students learn how scientists discern patterns and changes in bird populations though the study of bird migratory patterns.
Grades: 6-8
Subtopic: atmosphere
Type of resource:  Lesson plan

Bug and Planet Natural Science Lessons for Teachers 
K-12 Integrated Pest Management Education presented by subject and by grade level. 
Grades: K-12
Type of resource: Lesson plan

Discovery Education
Foster an appreciation of the environment and an interest in the green space in your community with Discovery Education's classroom resources.
Grades: K-12

Dive and Discover Expedition to the Seafloor
Immerse yourself in the excitement of discovery and exploration of the deep seafloor. Dive and Discover brings you right on board a series of research cruises around the globe, and gives you access to the latest oceanographic and deep submergence research as it happens!
Grades: 9-12

Ducks Unlimited for Educators  
This teacher guide and curriculum for teaching about wetlands contains a wide variety of activities geared to particular age groups.
Grades: All
Subtopic: Water

EducaPoles
EducaPoles is the International Polar Foundation's educational site. It sets out to sensitize young people and the educational world to the importance of the Polar Regions and of climate change by proposing adapted teaching tools and projects.
Grades: All

Everglades National Park for Teachers
Are you interested in teaching your students about the Florida Everglades? Check out this site to find activities and background information that will help you tell the story of this fascinating natural ecosystem. Even if you don't live near the Everglades, you will find valuable information that can be applied to many ecosystems throughout the country.
Grades: All

Flying Wild: Gulf Spill Educator Resources
A list of educator resources about the gulf oil spill.
Grades: 6-8 

Forests: Lesson Plan Overview
Students learn about the forest ecosystems.
Grades: K-5
Subtopic: ecosystem

The Fragile Fringe: Coastal Wetlands Teaching Guide 
A guide for teaching about coastal wetlands.
Grades: K-8

The Global Water Sampling Project 
Collaborative project that allows the participant to compare water quality of local water streams, lakes, etc. with other fresh water sources around the world.
Grades: 9-12

Great Backyard Bird Count
The Great Backyard Bird Count is an annual four-day event that engages bird watchers of all ages in counting birds to create a real-time snapshot of where birds are across the continent. Anyone can participate, from beginning bird watchers to experts. It takes as little as 15 minutes. It's free, fun, and easy—and it helps the birds.
Grades: K-12

How to talk with kids about an oil spill
A guide for parents and teachers when talking with kids about the Gulf oil spill. This has various other teaching tools and activities for kids.
Grades: K-8

How would an oil spill affect a marine sanctuary?
Students engage in a mock town meeting to determine how to clean up an oil spill in Monterray Bay. The factors involved in the discussions can be applied to oil spills in most other marine environments.
Grades: 6-8

If Trees Could Talk 
This 8-module, middle school social studies curriculum is a compilation of primary resources--documents, maps, newspaper articles, oral histories or photographs--from which students are be asked to gather, examine, and analyze information, and synthesize insights.
Grades: 6-8

Interactive Green Swamp   
Learn all about wetlands in this wonderful virtual tour of Florida's Green Swamp!
Grades: 9-12

Invasive Species: Coming to an Environment Near You
This lesson plan introduces students to invasive species and their effects on ecosystems by examining local examples. It also explores the problems associated with invasive species and possible solutions to the problem.
Grades: 6-8 
Type of resource: Activities

Journey North
A global study of wildlife migration. Students in North America track the journeys of a dozen migratory species and share their own field observations with classrooms across the Hemisphere.
Grades: 6-12

National Audubon Society Educator's Lounge
Help your students develop an understanding of the natural world. You can start indoors or go outside. This site can help you and your students learn more about the natural world.
Grades: K-12

National Estuarine Research Reserve System K-12 Educator Resources
Estuaries, where rivers meet the sea, are facinating ecosystems. Find out about what makes estuaries special, the threats to estuarine ecosystems and explore estuaries around the U.S.
Grades: 9-12

National Geographic: Niger River Delta Lesson Plan
This National Geographic lesson plan for middle school students explores the Niger River Delta ecosystem and how human actions impact the physical environment.
Grades: 6-12
Type of resource:  Lesson plan

National Wetlands Research Center
This site from the U.S. Geolocic Survey explores the many factors that affect wetland health, and provides resources for teachers on preserving our wetlands.
Grades: 9-12

National Wildlife Federation Oil Spill and Wetlands Education
Lesson plan for middle school students about effects of oil spills and ways to clean it up.
Grades: 6-8

Nature Net
Detailed materials about natural resources that the National Park Service maintains, including biology, geology, air, and water. Check the "Links to Learning" section for environmental education resources from different parks.
Grades: 6-12

NOAA Fisheries Office of Protected Resources
Learn what this office of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is doing to protect marine mammals and endangered species.
Grades: 6-8

Ocean Science Teacher Resource Center  
This site, organized by topic, links to a large collection of environmental web sites, which contain lesson plans and class activities.
Grades: 9-12

Pollinator Live
While pollinators may come in small sizes, they play a large and often undervalued role in the production of the food we eat, the health of flowering plants, and the future of wildlife. This site provides a series of live interactive webcasts, web seminar.
Grades: All
Type of resource:  Lesson plan

Prairie Information from Fermilab
Web sites about prairies, sources of seeds and restoration tips, general agricultural information and virtual weather.
Grades: 6-12

Project Learning Tree 
This national environmental education program includes correlations with the national environmental education performance standards. This program is recognized around the country as providing facilitators and participants with well-conceived and inquiry-oriented activities. The curriculum is available for a fee; the newsletter is free and there is a sample curriculum online.
Grades: K-12

Rainforest Alliance Learning Site
To help students understand the rainforest environment, this stie provides curriculum for use in teaching about current conservation challenges, cultural differences, and the wise use of resources. The site includes a climate educator guide.
Grades: K-8

Resources To Learn More About Endangered Species
From the Fish and Wildlife Service, a list of materials that may give you some ideas to help a species near you get on its road to recovery, because recovery is the ultimate goal for each threatened and endangered species.
Grades: All

Schoolyard Habitat
The Schoolyard Habitat program helps teachers and students create wildlife habitat on school grounds.
Grades: All

Science NetLinks
This site provides standards-based lesson plans that incorporate reviewed Internet resources, and can be selected according to specific benchmarks and grade ranges. Each lesson is tied to at least one learning goal and uses research-based instructional strategies that support student learning. The lessons are written for the teacher, but include student-ready materials such as student sheets (student reproducibles) or E-Sheets (online worksheets that enable students to engage directly in Internet activities).
Grades: All

Southwest Florida Water Management District Education Resources
Great virtual, interactive field trips that will help you to teach about wetlands and watersheds. Explore Florida's Green Swamp, Hillsborough River and Springs Coast Watershed. This site includes other resources such as educational tabloids, teacher's guides, and comprehensive educational kits.
Grades: All

Southwest Florida Watershed Excursions 
Learn all about watersheds in this awesome online excursion through the Hillsborough River watershed of southwest Florida.
Grades: All

Square of Life: Studies in Local and Global Environments
Elementary school curriculum that allows classes to compare their inventory of a 1 meter outdoor square in their school yard with another class across the country or the globe. Registration to participate is twice a year in spring and fall. Site contains lesson plans, activity instructions, reference materials, discussion area, standards comparison and a help contact.
Grades: K-6

TEACH: Environment  
Why do water levels change in the Great Lakes? What fish do people catch there, and what's threatening one of the world's largest freshwater fisheries? Learn about the environment of the Great Lakes region and the environmental issues there, including water quality, airborne toxics, invasive species and sustainable development.
Grades: K-12

Toxic and Algal Blooms  
Interactive information about how toxins can pose risks to the human body.
Grades: K-12

TurfMutt
Meet TurfMutt, the caped crusader, who’s out to save the planet one yard at a time. He’s out to support your love of the outdoors and provide tips on how to care for your green space in a responsible, earth-friendly way. Find lesson plans, activities, games and more.
Grades K-5

Wildlife Fact Sheets
From the Fish and Wildlife Service, basic information about species of regular public interest. Scroll to the bottom of the page for the factsheets.
Grades: 9-12

Wyland Foundation
Learn all about marine ecosystems through free activities that support National Science and Art Standards.
Grades: K-5

ENERGY STAR Kids
Students can learn to use energy wisely and be an energy star. With familiar characters like the Lorax, this site encourage students find out ways to be smarter about energy and how to use it. Find related publications for download and order.
Grades: K-8
Type of Resource: Interactive website

Fuel Economy and Environment Labels: High School (PDF 428K, 7 pp)
This activity lets students learn about fuel economy and environment labels, and how to calculate the cost and emissions associated with cars. Students will understand the concept of fuel economy and compare and contrast various fuel types.
Grades: 9-12
Type of resource: Lesson plan

Fuel Economy and Environment Labels: Middle School (PDF 381K, 7 pp)
This activity lets students learn about fuel economy and environment labels and calculate the cost and emissions associated with cars. Students will understand the concept of fuel economy and compare and contrast various fuel types.
Grades: 5-8
Type of resource: Lesson plan

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Earth Echo Educator Resources
Lesson plans, videos, and other materials on natural resources. 

Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Kids Home Page
Kids Saving Energy. Games tips and facts for kids who want to save energy.
Grades: 6-8

FT Exploring Science and Technology
Learn what energy is, how it's created, and how it's used. Explore how energy, as food, moves through Earth's ecosystems. Find out how energy makes life possible and how we can use energy better.
Grades: 6-12

Water Planet Challenge
Learn about energy efficiency through these interactive lessons.
Grades: 6-12

Asthma
Asthma and upper respiratory illnesses information from EPA's Office of Children's Health Protection.
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Website

Chemical Safety Resource for Middle School Teachers (PDF 220K, 5 pp)
In this lesson students will participate in a chemical survey activity regarding the household chemicals and cleaners used in and around their house. They will conduct a simple survey with parental supervision and answer questions about how many and what kind of chemicals they found. Students will also brainstorm on how chemical safety can prevent pollution at home.
Grades: 5-8
Type of resource: Lesson plan

Environmental Health Science Education
Lesson plans and classroom activities for teachers on environmental health science from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences.
Grades: K-12
Type of Resource: Lesson plans, activity guides, factsheets

A Citizens Guide to Radon
A complete guide to taking action to lower the radon level in your home. It offers strategies for testing and discussions of what steps to take after you have tested, discussions of the risk of radon and radon myths.
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Guide

Health Effects of Exposure to Secondhand Smoke
Secondhand smoke can cause health problems in children and adults. Read about the risks of environmental tobacco smoke and find links to research studies about the issue.
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Website

Help! It's a Roach!
Roaches are one of the most common household pests. Once they move into your home, they multiply quickly. That makes them even harder to control. Use this Web site and complete the activities to learn what kids and adults can do.
Grades: K-5
Type of Resource: Interactive website

Hold the Mold (PDF 306K, 6 pp)
In this lesson, students will learn about the different kinds of mold and how it grows.
They will conduct an experiment to grow and observe the growth of different kinds of food molds
and understand the health effects of mold and how to recognize and prevent mold growth.
Grades: 5-8
Type of Resource: Lesson plan

Lead Blockers (PDF 272K, 6 pp)
In this lesson students will learn about the health effects of lead and through a game of tag.  Students will model the process of certain nutrients that can block lead absorption. As part of the activity, students will brainstorm on ways to prevent lead exposure at home.
Grades: K-8
Type of resource: Lesson plan

Lead in Paint, Dust and Soil
Find information about lead hazards and lead poisoning prevention in the home.
Grades: 9-12
Type of resource: Website

Learn About Chemicals Around Your House
What do you know about the many household products used around your home? Join a house tour to learn more about the chemicals around your home.
Grades: K-5
Type of resource: Interactive website

Mercury
A two-disc DVD and CD package (also available in PDF) that contains a variety of activities, educational videos, and other information designed to enhance students' understanding of mercury and its potential health hazards..
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Toolkit

Mercury Bioaccumulation Tag (PDF 317K, 4 pp)
This activity lets students model the processes of mercury bioaccumulation and biomagnification in an aquatic food chain. Students will understand the health effects of mercury and demonstrate an understanding of how mercury becomes present in fish.
Grades: 5-8
Type of resource: Lesson plan

Recipes for Health Kids and a Healthy Environment
A nine-lesson program designed to excite kids about environmental health and to empower them to take steps in their everyday lives to improve the environment for their community and reduce environmental risk.
Grades: 4-8
Type of Resource: Curriculum guide

Sunwise: Sun safety for Kids and Educators
SunWise Partner Schools sponsor classroom and school-wide activities that raise children's awareness of stratospheric ozone depletion, UV radiation, and simple sun safety practices. The SunWise Toolkit is free to registered schools.
Grades: K-8
Type of Resource: Website and toolkit

The Ultraviolet Index
Several publications explaining the Ultraviolet Index and steps you can take to minimize the risks from overexposure to the sun's rays. Each is available for reading online and downloading.
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Website and database

Water on Tap: What You Need to Know
Where does your drinking water come from? How is it treated? How do you protect it? This is the place to get the answers to these and other drinking-water questions.
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Factsheet/brochure

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Asthma Funbook
Download a funbook with games that teach your child about asthma and triggers. This is a site funded by EPA's Asthma program.
Grades: K-5

Become an IPM Super Sleuth  
Created with support from EPA and the National Foundation for IPM Education, IPM Super Sleuth site includes lessons about Integrated Pest Management.
Grades: 1-7

Chemicals, The Environment, and You - What is the Risk?
Students apply their understanding of the concepts of toxicology to their discussion of the 1950s tragedy in Minamata, Japan. They learn how to assess the risk of people exposed to specific chemical hazards and make decisions about how to manage that risk.
Grades: 6-8
Type of resource:  Lesson plan

Elementary Urban IPM Curriulum  
This site provides K-6 educators in formal and informal settings with background information, hands-on activities, worksheets and resources to help teachers engage the students in real-world scientific and interdiciplinary learning using Urban Intergrated Pest Management (IPM) tools.
Grades: K-6

EnviroHealth Connections
EnviroHealth Connections is a gateway to multi-media resources for middle and high school students and teachers. This project brings imagination into the classroom through interactive investigations, expert presentations, comprehensive lesson plans and more.
Grades: 6-12

Environmental Health Science Education
Portal site for students, teachers and scientists on environmental health information, activities, jobs, and developmental opportunities.
Grades: 6-12

The Environmental Literacy Council  
Tools to help students develop environmental literacy: a fundamental understanding of the systems of the world, both living and non-living, along with the analytical skills needed to weigh scientific evidence and policy choices.
Grades: All

The Green Squad  
The Green Squad teaches kids about the relationship between their schools and environmental and health issues. The site is designed primarily for students in fifth through eighth grade, but also offers information for younger and older students as well as parents and teachers.
Grades: K-12

National Pesticide Information Center (NPIC)  
Everything you ever wanted to know about pesticides in one easy location. This cooperative effort between EPA and Oregon State University provides information from EPA, state agencies, academia and Canada, including information for health care providers.
Grades: 9-12

Basic Information about Waste
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Website

Consumer's Handbook for Reducing Solid Waste
This site describes how people can help solve a growing problem...garbage!
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Website

Pollution Prevention Toolbox
The toolbox contains a series of four-page lesson plans on various pollution prevention concepts for schools.
Grades: 6-8
Type of Resource: Curriculum guide

The Quest for Less: Activities and Resources for Teaching K-8
Use this resource to develop lesson plans, incorporate a range of activities into various subject areas throughout the school year.
Grades: K-8
Type of Resource: Curriculum guide

Resources for Waste Education
These online activities make learning about recycling fun! Students will love the colorful graphics and educational activities.
Grades: 6-8
Type of Resource: Curriculum guide

Science Fair Fun: Designing Environmental Science Projects  (PDF 245K, 16 pp) 
Resource booklet designed to generate ideas for students and teachers interested in solid waste science fair projects
Grades: 6-8
Type of Resource: Curriculum guide

Science Fair Fun: Designing Environmental Science Projects en Español  (PDF 223K, 16 pp)
Resource booklet in Spanish designed to generate ideas for students and teachers interested in solid waste science fair projects.
Grades: 6-8
Type of Resource: Curriculum guide

Superfund Basics
This page provides an overview of the Superfund program, highlights key steps in the Superfund cleanup process, explains how the program is enforced, describes EPA's Superfund offices, and links to other EPA hazardous-waste programs.
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Website

Superfund: Classroom Activities
This site has resources to help teachers educate students about the Superfund Program. It includes environmental cleanup videos, activities to assist in teaching about hazardous waste and site cleanup, and a participatory program in which classrooms collect weather data for EPA. 
Grades: K-12
Type of Resource: Lesson plans 

Tools to Reduce Waste in Schools
EPA's Tools to Reduce Waste in Schools helps your school and school district reduce the amount of waste you generate. You'll learn how to start a waste reduction program or expand an existing one. The guide will show you how your program can benefit your school, your community, and the environment by reducing, reusing, and recycling your waste.
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Curriculum guide

Waste publications by topic - Educational Resources
Grades: K-12
Type of Resource: Activity books, lessons, factsheets, guides and posters

Where Can I Take My Computer?
Web sites and organizations that can provide information on opportunities for donating and recycling computers and other electronics.
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Website

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The Adventures of Herman the Worm
A site for younger kids to learn about composting, worm bins and the biology of earthworms. What's on the menu at the Worm Deli? ¡En Español tambien!
Grades: k-5

Composting in Schools  
A comprehensive guide for teachers interested in guiding students' research projects on composting. The book was selected by the National Science Teachers Association to be included in 'Recommends', a collection of the best science education books.
Grades: k-12

Trash Goes to School - Activities
A range of activities and projects for learning about solid waste and recycling. Covers reduction, recycling, composting, incineration, landfills, and risk.
Grades: 9-12

Acid Rain Educational Resources
Experiments and activities, basic acid rain concepts, and things you can do about acid rain.
Grades: K-12
Type of Resource: Lesson plans and experiments

Beach Kids
Whether you live near a beach or not, visit this site to learn neat things about beaches and play games.
Grades: K-8
Type of Resource: Interactive website

Build Your Own Aquifer (PDF 240 KB, 2 pp)
Demonstration activity to illustrate how water is stored in an aquifer and how groundwater can become contaminated.
Grades: 4-5
Type of Resource: Lesson plan

Clean Water Act  
A historical overview of the Clean Water Act, the primary Federal law that protects our nation's waters, including lakes, rivers, aquifers, and coastal areas.
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Website

Darby Duck and the Aquatic Crusaders
Grades: K-5
Type of Resource: Lesson plan and experiments

Drinking Water & Ground Water Kids' Stuff
Games, activities, and art projects about the water cycle and water treatment.
Grades: K-12
Type of Resource: Lesson plans

Effects of Acid Rain
Fact sheets answering what is acid rain, what are its causes, and what are its effects on our planet.
Grades: 6-12
Type of Resource: Website

Ground Water Contamination
Learn about all about  groundwater contamination and where it occurs.
Grades: 9-12
Type of Resource: Website

How People Get Their Water - Reservoirs: "Holding Tanks" for Drinking Water (PDF 124 KB, 1 pp)
Let your students "Ride the Water Cycle" with the following activity. It will help them understand the role of reservoirs in maintaining a reliable supply of drinking water.
Grades: 4-8
Type of Resource: Lesson plan

Magnificent Ground Water Connection
This ground-water activity guide is applicable to a wide range of subject matter and the topics include basic concepts on the water cycle, water distribution, treatment, and stewardship. This page includes five sample lesson activity plans.
Grades: K-12
Type of Resource: Curriculum guide

On Your Mark, Set, Evaporate (PDF 4.73 MB, 398 pp)
This lesson plan covers transpiration as part of the hydrologic cycle.
Grades: 6-8
Type of resource: Lesson plan

Thirstin Builds an Aquifer in a Cup (Aquifer on the Go)
THis activity illustrates how water is stored in an aquifer, how ground water can become contaminated, and how this contamination ends up in a drinking water well. Ultimately, students should get a clear understanding of how careless use and disposal of harmful contaminants above the ground can potentially end up in the drinking water below the ground. This particular experiment can be done by each student at their work station.
Grades: K-3
Type of resource: Interactive website

Thirstin's Groundwater Movement Activity (PDF 332 KB, 2 pp)
This class activity demonstrates that ground water must be able to move through underground materials. The students will act as molecules of water and the underground materials.
Grades: K-5
Type of resource: Lesson plan

Tracking Pollution - A Hazardous Whodunit
Students will make a topographic map, use it to predict ground water flow and investigate the most likely source of ground water contamination.
Grades: 9-12
Type of resource: Lesson plan

Water Sense Resources
Resources for educating students about "Fix a Leak Week" and water efficiency.
Grades: K-8
Type of resource: Lesson plan

Water Sourcebooks
The Water Sourcebooks explain the water management cycle and show how it affects all aspects of the environment. 324 activities for grades K-12 are divided into four sections: K-2, 3-5, 6-8, and 9-12.
Grades: K-12
Type of Resource: Curriculum Guide

What's Up with Our Nation's Waters
Grades: 6-8
Type of Resource: Factsheet/brochure

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The Bridge: Ocean Sciences Education Teacher Resource Center  
This resource from the Virginia Institute of Marine Science provides teachers with a selection of the best online resources for marine science education.
Grades: K-12

Center for Global Environmental Education Watershed Action Plan  
The Watershed Action Site offers one stop help in planning and organizing service-learning projects to prevent water pollution in your watershed. Within this site you can access resources from curricula to data to stencils for painting storm drain signs.
Grades: K-12

Discover Water
DiscoverWater.org is a self-directed educational  resource comprised of eight units about different water  topics—ranging from the global to the personal  perspective—which together reflect many of the complex and important roles of water in so many  aspects of our lives. It is designed for use primarily by students ages 7-12 and educators for this age group, both in- and outside the  classroom.
Grades: 5-8

Down the Drain  
How much water do you use every day in your home? Introduces students to the topic of water use, and to data gathering and analysis. From the Center for Improved Engineering and Science Education (CIESE).
Grades: K-5
Type of Resource: Curriculum guide

The Groundwater Foundation Kids Corner 
Pollution prevention is the most effective, cost efficient way to protect groundwater. Lots of classroom activities, games, coloring sheets.
Grades: 9-12, adult

H20 conserve
Use the Water Calculator to figure out how much water you use, how you use it and how you can use less.
Grades: 9-12, adult

Liquid Density and Oil Spills
Lesson plan on liquid density and oil spills for teachers of middle school students.
Grades: 6-8

Nab the Aquatic Invader 
This interactive cartoon uses detective characharters to learn about invasive species -- different kinds, why they are harmful, how they affect economy and ecosystem.
Grades: 6-8

National Wetlands Research Center
This site from the U.S. Geolocic Survey explores the many factors that affect wetland health, and provides resources for teachers on preserving our wetlands.
Grades: 9-12

NOAA Educational Resources
Find education resource collections, teacher programs and more from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
Grades: K-12
Type of Resource: Website

National Ocean Service Education
Find case studies, tutorials, games, and more from NOAA's National Ocean Service.
Grades: K-12
Type of Resource: Website

NOAA Fisheries Office of Protected Resources
Learn what this office of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is doing to protect marine mammals and endangered species.
Grades: 6-8

No Water Off a Duck’s Back 
This sample activity, No Water Off a Ducks Back, from Project WILD, is about connecting people and wildlife. The activity helps students identify ways oil spills can adversely affect birds and describe possible negative consequences to wildlife, people, and the environment.
Grades: 6-8

Ocean Science Education Teacher Resource Center  
This site links by topic to a large collection of environmental web sites which contain lesson plans and class activities.
Grades: 9-12

Prince William Sound Regional Citizens' Advisory Council 
Before the Gulf oil spill there was an oil spill from a tanker in Alaska. Getting and using oil continues to be an process that can threaten the environment. The activities in this curriculum teach students about oil spill issues regardless of the location of the spill.
Grades: all

Rain Garden Lesson Plan
This lesson introduces students to the concept of rain gardens and why they are beneficial in cleaning up polluted waterways. Students will learn how and why rain gardens are created and then build a model rain garden.
Grades: 6-12

Rain Garden Projects   
The Earth Partnership for Schools program developed a pilot rain garden curricular sampler for K-12 schools. Use these activities to build a rain garden on your school grounds with your students.

Respect the Beach
The Surfrider Foundation offers information on preserving and conserving our beaches--sand, water, and waves.
Grades: 9-12

Science with NOAA Research: Teacher Information 
Online science lessons for students and teachers. Covers earth systems that have to do with the oceans and lakes: storms, El Nino, the atmosphere, and fisheries.
Grades: 9-12

Southwest Florida Water Management District Education Resources
Great virtual, interactive field trips that will help educate students about wetlands and watersheds. Explore Florida's Green Swamp, Hillsborough River and Springs Coast Watershed. Includes lots of other neat resources too such as educational tabloids, teacher's guides, and comprehensive educational kits.
Grades: 9-12

TEACH: Environment 
Why do water levels change in the Great Lakes? What fish do people catch there, and what's threatening one of the world's largest freshwater fisheries? Learn about the environment of the Great Lakes region and the environmental issues there, including water quality, airborne toxics, invasive species and sustainable development.
Grades: K-12

Water: An Amazing and Precious Resource
In this lesson, students will begin with a water audit pre-lesson to determine their own personal water usage. They will then participate in a class activity to learn how water's physical properties and chemical composition are essential to life on Earth. Once they understand water's importance, they will debate water distribution issues, have an understanding of the consequences of water scarcity, and come up with ways to conserve water in their own lives.
Grades: 9-12

The Water Cycle
See how the water cycle works with this animation.
Grades: 6-12

Water Planet Challenge: Water efficiency
Learn about water efficiency through these interactive lessons.
Grades: 6-12

Water Planet Challenge: Water Quality
Learn about water quality through these interactive lessons.
Grades: 6-12

Water Science for Schools
This site provides extensive background information on a wide variety of water topics. It also includes on-line activities, data tables, maps, and a glossary of terms.
Grades: 6-12

Water Stewardship
Bring the environment into your classroom.  Find K-12 lesson plans, presentations, educational games, videos, songs and more on the Michigan Water Stewardship website.
Grades: K-12

Water Use Calculator
See how much water is used and how to conserve water.
Grades: 6-8

Watershed TV  
Introduces you to an innovative program that brings the watershed community right to your home.
Grades: 9-12

World Water Monitoring Day
World Water Monitoring Day helps watershed leaders, educators and trained volunteers to educate students and citizens how the actions of individuals in a watershed can impact environmental quality and human health.
Grades: 9-12