Why Do We Offer Environmental Education?
We offer environmental education programs because we believe knowledge leads to better decision making. Research has shown that “knowledge of environmental issues and knowledge of action strategies …contribute to environmentally responsible behavior.”1
NRWA environmental education programs provide children and adults the opportunity to explore the outdoors. They enjoy learning about local plants and animals which they may have seen in their own backyards. Research has shown that an “attachment to local natural resources can influence environmentally responsible behavior in an individual's everyday life.”2
Our hands-on science lessons allow school children to act as “citizen scientists.” These activities are engaging and memorable. Environmental education has demonstrated improved standardized test scores.3
The goal of our environmental education programs is to ensure our natural resources will be valued today, and protected now and forever.
“The River Classroom canoe-based program has become an integral part of our science curriculum because it offers rich, hand-on opportunities for students to interact with, and learn from a resources right in their own backyards”
- JoAnne Curley, 4th grade teacher, Mary Rowlandson Elementary School in Lancaster, MA
“Thank you for bringing the watershed model. It was fun being able to participate in’ polluting’ the model. Doing this helped us understand point source and non-point source pollution.”
- Students from Hildreth Elementary School in Harvard, MA
“I wish science class could always be like this.”
- Student from Memorial Middle School in Fitchburg, MA
1Jody M. Hines, Harold R. Hungerford & Audrey N. Tomera. (1987) Analysis and Synthesis of Research on Responsible Environmental Behavior: A Meta-Analysis, The Journal of Environmental Education, 18 (2), 1-8.
2Vaske, Jerry J. & Kobrin , Katherine C. (2001) Place Attachment and Environmentally Responsible Behavior, The Journal of Environmental Education, 32(7), 16-21.
3Lieberman, G. A. & Hoody, L (1998) Closing the Achievement Gap. San Diego, CA: State Education and Environmental Roundtable.