The Center for Public Engagement with Science leads the Schools in Parks Collaboratives, a year-long professional development program to foster increased confidence and sense of efficacy among 3rd, 4th and 5th grade teachers in using outdoor science learning approaches in state parks to support their curriculum objectives. Schools in Parks is a state-wide initiative of North Carolina State Parks to ensure that every public school student in the state has a meaningful learning experience in a state park by the time of graduation.
During the Collaboratives, classroom teachers and park rangers take part in a series of workshops where hands-on, inquiry-based activities aligned with state standards and integrated with multiple content areas are modeled for use on field trips. Teacher and rangers partner to develop lessons that can be used to support student learning in state parks over the course of the school year. Collaboratives also provide educators with resources for using the schoolyard as an outdoor classroom, access to a peer network for outdoor learning, continuing education credits, stipends and support in planning a state park field trip during the school year.
Curriculum | Outdoor Teaching Resources | State Parks Resources | Program Contacts
North Carolina State Parks, Interpretation & Education (I&E)
Sean Higgins, I&E Manager
email@example.com | 919-805-2194
Randy Bechtel, I&E Specialist
firstname.lastname@example.org | 919-707-9325
Ben Herman, Outdoor Recreation Coordinator (Big Canoes)
email@example.com | 919-602-0937
David Pearson, Executive Director
firstname.lastname@example.org | 910-389-0210
UNC Institute for the Environment, Center for Public Engagement with Science
Mary Meyer, Elementary Environmental Education Consultant
Sarah Yelton, Environmental Education & Citizen Science Program Manager
Friends of State Parks, Inc.
PO Box 37655
Raleigh, NC 27627
Friends of State Parks, Inc. is a nonprofit, tax-exempt charitable organization (tax identification number 58-1634155) under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Donations are tax deductible as allowed by law.
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