NEEF | Environmental Literacy Report 2015

Environmental educators have an unprecedented opportunity to create a more environmentally literate citizenry — a citizenry equipped with the knowledge, skills, and motivation to tackle the environmental, social, and economic challenges that we face today and in the future.

Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research (Tucson)

The primary mission of the Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research is to remain in the forefront of world dendrochronology through the use of tree rings as natural chronometers and recorders of change in the environment with which human society is inescapably linked. The Laboratory makes significant contributions to understanding natural environmental variability in climatic, hydrologic, geomorphic, and ecological systems.

They are committed to promoting public awareness (and understanding) of science and making informal contributions to science education. As part of their Outreach program, they strive to inspire new connections and nurture existing connections among our community, which includes visitors to and residents of Tucson, and the K-12 educators and students communities.

Arizona State University | School of Sustainability (Statewide)

Established in 2006, the School of Sustainability’s mission is to educate a new generation of scholars and practitioners and create innovative modes of scholarship by bringing together leaders, stakeholders, and people from multiple disciplines to develop practical solutions to the most pressing sustainability challenges.

Online Sustainability Degree

Green Education Foundation (GEF)

Green Education Foundation (GEF) is a national non-profit organization committed to creating a sustainable future through education. GEF aims to identify key factors and impediments influencing sustainability education, evaluate existing approaches, and develop effective educational materials and programs to promote behavior change towards sustainable practices.  GEF offers free programs that provide curricula and hands-on activities to inspire K-12 students and teachers to think holistically about global sustainability concerns and solutions.

Population Education

Population Education, a program of Population Connection, is the only national program with a strong emphasis on curriculum and professional development for K-12 educators that focuses on human population issues. Since 1975, the program has developed age-appropriate curricula to complement students’ science and social science instruction about human population trends and their impacts on natural resources, environmental quality and human well-being. Population Education provides hands-on professional development training to approximately 10,000-12,000 teachers and student teachers annually in North America.

Willow Bend Environmental Education Center (Flagstaff)

The mission of the Willow Bend Environmental Center in Flagstaff, Arizona, is to provide education outreach services that build environmental awareness and an ethic of responsible stewardship of our natural and cultural resources.

The Cooper Center for Environmental Learning (Tucson)

The Cooper Center for Environmental Learning is an organization that provides adventurous and hands-on learning experiences in the Sonoran Desert. They achieve this through a partnership between the Tucson Unified School District, who owns and maintains the facilities, and the University of Arizona’s College of Education, who facilitates educational programming for learners of all ages.

Phoenix Zoo (Phoenix)

A visit to the Phoenix Zoo opens a wondrous world of curiosity, imagination and discovery. For more than half a century, the Zoo and its animals have amazed guests from across Phoenix and around the globe. Whether you are on the lookout for awe-inspiring Asian elephants, on safari to spot the great Sumatran tiger or seeking towering giraffes roaming the Savanna — a day at the Phoenix Zoo offers adventures like no other place in the Valley of the Sun.

The Phoenix Zoo is home to more than 1,400 animals, including 30 species that are endangered or threatened. There is so much to be learned about the animals that live here, and we encourage you to explore!

In addition to learning from a visit to the Phoenix Zoo— they also offer animal fact sheets, camps, and other programs that offer opportunities for further onsite learning and fun! The animals that live at the Phoenix Zoo and in the wild are endlessly intriguing and inspiring, and will leave you with a greater understanding and care for the natural world.

Desert Botanical Garden (Phoenix)

For nearly 80 years, Desert Botanical Garden has been teaching and inspiring visitors from the local community and around the world, providing research, exhibits and more designed to help us understand, protect and preserve the desert’s natural beauty.