A NatureBridge educator teaches a group of students in the Golden Gate National Recreation Area.
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Educational Approach

When young people discover the wonder and science of the natural world, they’re prepared for a lifetime of exploration and stewardship of the environment—that starts now. We strive to develop a generation of environmental stewards who have the knowledge, attitudes and skills to collaborate to protect and advocate for the natural world.

We use an effective model to teach environmental science education with decades of proven outcomes. Our multifaceted curriculum helps students understand how the environment works and how humans interact with nature. They are empowered to take action today for a better tomorrow. This unique approach is informed by current academic research and field-tested by our educators.

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Our Model

At NatureBridge, learning comes alive. Our innovative programs take students out of the classroom and into national parks where they spend multiple days immersed in nature, living and learning alongside their peers.

Led in small groups by experienced educators, students engage in scientific principles firsthand, explore ecological concepts, collaborate with their classmates and apply their learnings in real-time, all while discovering the joy of the outdoors. 

Students hold out their hands to hold a bug.

Purposeful Inclusion #

Diversity is not just welcomed at NatureBridge, it’s essential to our success. Our educators create an equitable, welcoming and empowering learning environment. 

Utilizing the unique strengths, lived experiences and knowledge of all NatureBridge learners allows us to achieve our goal of creating a shared love of nature and healthier communities for us all. 

Pioneering Progress #

We are advancing the field of environmental science education. 

In partnership with academic institutions such as Stanford University Graduate School of Education, we conduct research on program design, delivery and impact. This research helps us advance our practice and ensure that we’re serving our students with high quality programming. 

We are also leading an initiative in partnership with 10 different organizations, to incorporate social and emotional learning into overnight environmental science education programs across the country. 

Read more about the work we’re doing with the Residential Environmental Education Partnership >>

Every student is challenged physically, emotionally, spiritually and mentally. They not only overcome their own individual fears, they learn to work together by building trust with each other. Within two days you see the self-esteem and curiosity beaming from these students.
Michele, Parent
Meet our


Our Environmental Science Educators have a passion for engaging with youth and the natural world. Our staff have strong educational backgrounds, extensive teaching experience, certifications for managing risk in the field and receive training on cultural responsiveness and inclusion.

Learn more about the people who make NatureBridge work on our blog.

A NatureBridge educator laughs with a student in Olympic National Park
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Theory of Change: NatureBridge's Theory of Change serves as a guiding educational framework, articulating what we believe is happening during our environmental science program and the program's impact on our participants.

Cognia Accreditation: NatureBridge is proud to be an accredited school by Cognia (formerly AdvancED), which nationally recognizes schools that meet rigorous standards focused on productive learning environments, equitable resource allocation that meets the needs of learners, and effective leadership. Earning accreditation from the Cognia Global Accreditation Commission means that the school is accredited, and that NatureBridge is recognized across the nation as a school that meets Cognia Performance Standards and maintains a commitment to continuous improvement.

From Science to Stewardship Program Evaluation: Read about the impact of NatureBridge’s Environmental Science Programs in From Science to Stewardship: Evaluating a Decade of Field Science Education Frameworks and Programs

Environmental Education Research Bulletin: The Environmental Education Research Bulletin is a collaborative project between Dr. Nicole Ardoin at Stanford University and the North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE). The research bulletins synthesize and summarize recently reported research from journals focused on issues pertaining to environmental educators. The bulletins include articles related to environmental education evaluation, sense of place, environmental behavior, teaching practices and professional development, among other relevant topics. Read the most recent bulletins: Issue 13 and Issue 14

From Anecdotes to Evidence: Demonstrating the power of environmental education: A Stanford University analysis reveals a wide array of benefits from environmental education.

Strengthen Environmental Science Education