How We Teach

About Us

We envision a world where every student learns about the science of nature, is inspired by its beauty, and is motivated to take action to protect the natural world.

How We Teach

NatureBridge brings to life what students read about in textbooks and provides an authentic opportunity for students to experience scientific principles firsthand. National park settings are ideal for learning ecological concepts and exploring how humans interact with the environment. Our innovative programs open children’s hearts and minds to the wonders of nature and science in the world’s best classrooms—our national parks. Our commitment to educational experiences of the highest quality ensures that every NatureBridge student has a meaningful experience that stays with them long after they’ve left the national park.

Core educational framework

Our programs are based on the NatureBridge Core Educational Framework. Developed by a team of classroom teachers as well as academic, research, and environmental science experts, this framework ensures that every program meets the needs of students and capitalizes on their unique strengths, prior experiences, and knowledge.

Programs are designed to support classroom learning goals and are customized for each group. Instructional methodologies include:

  • Inquiry-based and thematic teaching
  • Active personal growth and social emotional learning through team building activities, reflection, and cooperative group work
  • Appropriate challenging physical activities
  • Transference to students' home communities

 

Skilled educators

Our environmental science educators have years of teaching experience in outdoor and environmental education programs and a contagious enthusiasm for exploring the natural world. 

In additional to direct teaching experience, all of our educators have:

  • Bachelor's degree or higher
  • Wilderness First Responder certification
  • Passion about teaching, youth, and the environment

Many of our educators have:

  • Worked as national park rangers or as certified classroom teachers.
  • Traveled or lived abroad, sometimes volunteering for organizations or studying foreign languages. 

All of our educators are trained in diversity, equity, and inclusion and strive to support each student's social and emotional learning by providing a safe and supportive environment.

 

Program evaluation & measurement

NatureBridge evaluation efforts aim to determine whether and how well our programs meet specified environmental education outcomes; the results are used to continuously improve our programs and pedagogies. 

Evaluating a decade of environmental science education frameworks and programs. 

 

Program outcomes

NatureBridge programs take students out of the classroom and into the world around them. NatureBridge students experience remarkable personal growth, improved interpersonal skills, and increased academic ability. Growth in these areas leads directly to our goal of environmental literacy in every generation for a more sustainable future.

Research Bulletin

Research in the Environmental Education Research Bulletin: Issue 9 (PDF).

NatureBridge Works

Ongoing evaluations, done in partnership with experts from organizations such as the Stanford University School of Education, show that NatureBridge environmental science programs create a long-term educational impact, strengthen teacher effectiveness, and encourage stewardship among students. 

A Proud Partner of the National Park Service