Explore Your Environment – Earth’s Capacity focuses on environmental stewardship and issues such as transportation choices, waste management, composting, recycling, and natural resources.
The Exploring Your Environment Facilitator’s Guide will provide training, supplemental activities and resources to help the facilitator deliver the Exploring Your Environment curriculum.
Children learn best when they are actively engaged in the learning process, are encouraged to ask questions and contribute ideas, and are recognized as a learning resource. If you have several years of experience working with youth or this is your first time, you will find these questions helpful to create a rich learning environment. You will also help youth gain new insights, not only into our environment, but into themselves and others.
The Environment: Context
- Is there shared learning and conversation among adults and youth? Is the learning taking place as a social process?
- Does the setting promote safety? (physically? verbally? non-verbally? emotionally?)
- Do youth feel in control by making choices?
- Are youth given opportunities to demonstrate mastery, independence, generosity, and belonging?
- Are youth actively engaged in hands-on, minds-on activities?
The Learning: Content
- Is it fun? Is the learning active, intentional, and does it provide opportunity for reflection?
- Are youth inventing their way of thinking about the world?
- Are youth engaged in self-discovery?
- Are youth relating learning to real-world experiences?
- Are youth taking responsibility for their learning?
- Are youth constructing their learning by broadening their knowledge, skills, and attitudes about a topic?
- Is embedded evaluations obvious? Do the products of the learning show that youth learned (such as a speech/a constructed or built object/a completed project).
- Are youth displaying their work? In a public place? Among peers?
The Facilitation: Delivery
- Are questions used to encourage youth?
- Does the experience allow opportunity for reflection?
- Are ideas or concepts broken down into small, understandable parts (six or less)?
- Is the content adapted to meet the interests, knowledge and abilities of participants?
- Am I an active learner and listener?
- Are strategies being discussed to stimulate lifelong learning?
- Am I asking questions? Am I prompting youth to ask questions? Am I catching teachable moments to deepen the learning?
View Films About the Environment
Into the Wind, Parts 1-4
Hudson River Clearwater Revival
After the Burn
Water Quality Testing, Wayne County, MI
The Four Horizons
Grab and Gos
These 10 Grab and Go's are downloadable 2-page activities that can be printed and used in your program!
Support for this resource was provided by Toyota. Toyota established operations in the United States in 1957 and is committed to being a good corporate citizen in the communities where it does business. The company believes in programs with long-term sustainable results, and supports numerous organizations across the country, focusing on education, the environment and safety.
Support for this publication was provided by the Noyce Foundation. The Noyce Foundation is dedicated to stimulating ideas and supporting initiatives designed to produce significant improvement in teaching and learning in mathematics, science and literacy for youth in grades K-12