Schoolyard Education Materials

Following is a list of Schoolyard gardening resources and organizations that are involved with educating children about nature, the environment, ecology, and gardening. It is divided into the following three sections: Georgia Organizations and Resources; National Organizations and Resources; and Books.

Due to the wide range of resources available and the ever-changing nature of information, this listing cannot be complete or comprehensive. Nor is this meant as an endorsement by the GNPS of any of these resources or organizations.


Environmental Education Alliance of Georgia
Web site:
The Environmental Education Alliance (EEA) is a nonprofit organization that promotes communication and education among professionals in the field of environmental education in Georgia. EEA is an affiliate of the North American Association for Environmental Education. It is a professional education and networking association whose mission is to “serve as a self-governed non-profit organization that promotes communication and education among professionals in the field of environmental education in Georgia.”

Georgia Natural Heritage Program
2117 US Highway 278 SE
Social Circle GA 30025
770-918-6411 or 706-557-3032
Web site: On Facebook
The Georgia Natural Heritage Program was established in 1986 through a cooperative agreement between the Georgia Department of Natural Resources and The Nature Conservancy. It is a unit of the Non-game Wildlife & Natural Heritage Section in the Wildlife Resources Division of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources. On the Web site information can be found about protected plants of Georgia rare species information and conservation information for landowners.

Georgia Wildlife Federation
Web site:
Resources for teachers include: Schoolyard Wildlife Habitat Planning Guide Backyard Wildlife Habitat Planning Guide Schoolyard Wildlife Habitat Video Habitat Newsletter NWF Teacher Kits Georgia Wildlife Magazine Attracting Wildlife to Your Backyard and Georgia Wildlife Viewing Guide. These can be found at The GWF also offers “Habitat Stewards Workshops” to train volunteers to help communities create and preserve wildlife habitat.

Georgia Plant Conservation Alliance
Web site:
On this site you will find general information about the GPCA whose mission is “to study and preserve Georgia’s flora through multidisciplinary research education and advocacy; facilitate the recovery of rare threatened and endangered plants of Georgia and the southeast U.S. through collaborative efforts in our state; and communicate the importance of preserving biodiversity worldwide.” The site also includes information about the Georgia Endangered Plant Stewardship Network a school site endangered plant propagation project.

Project WILD
Charlie Elliott Wildlife Center
543 Elliott Trail
Mansfield GA 30055
Web site:
Project WILD is an environmental education program for students of all ages. It works to assist learners of any age to develop awareness knowledge skills commitment and constructive action concerning wildlife and the environment. It is sponsored in Georgia by the Department of Natural Resources Wildlife Resources Division and by the Georgia Chapter of the Safari Club International. Among its offerings are teacher training workshops and schoolyard wildlife habitat workshops. Project WILD also has a National Organization.


Acorn Naturalists

PO Box 2423
Tustin CA 92781-2423
Web site:
This company offers resources for science and environmental education. A catalog is available either on-line or in a printed version. Offerings include educator guides, field guides, interpretive tools, toys, and numerous books on nature and the environment written for either adults or children.

Aggie Horticulture Just for Kids
Web site:
This site is a service of the Texas A&M University Horticulture Program. The site includes a variety of information for children’s gardens in a school setting, including a step-by step guide to building a school garden ideas and curricula, nutritional benefits of school gardens, and building an indoor growing science center.

American Horticultural Society
7931 East Boulevard Drive
Alexandria VA 22308-1300
703-768-5700 or 800-777-7931
Web site:
The American Horticultural Society, founded in 1922, is an educational, non-profit organization whose mission is “to educate and inspire people of all ages to become successful and environmentally responsible gardeners by advancing the art and science of horticulture.” The AHS holds an annual Youth Gardening Symposium, which is a national forum for youth gardens and gardening education. The Web site offers gardening guides and resource lists as well as books and gifts.

Center for Plant Conservation
P.O. Box 299
St. Louis MO 63166
Web site:
The mission of the Center for Plant Conservation is to conserve and restore the rare native plants of the United States. One publication they offer for middle school educators is “Plants in Peril”, a guide to exploring biodiversity and rare native plant conservation. This handbook provides educators at the middle school and high school levels with background information about biodiversity and plant conservation as well as ideas for related problem-solving activities.

Cornell Lab of Ornithology
159 Sapsucker Woods Road
Ithaca NY 14850-1999
Web site: /
This organization offers educational material and projects for classrooms and individuals. They sponsor such projects as the Great Backyard Bird Count (which is held every February), Classroom Feeder Watch for schools (curriculum description at, and Project Feeder Watch for residences.

EPA Landscaping with Native Plants
Web site:
This U. S. Environmental Protection Agency site promotes landscaping with native plants in urban, suburban, and corporate environments and discusses the environmental benefits of using native plants. Some of the topics covered are lawn alternatives, attracting birds and butterflies, weed laws, maintenance techniques, and case studies. Available at the site is the “Wild Ones Handbook”, a compendium of practical information for the native plant landscaper and wildflower gardener.

Flowers, Plants, and Gardening: For Kids!
Web site:
A resource to help youth learn about botany, gardening, horticulture, and hydroponics.

Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
4801 La Crosse Avenue
Austin TX 78739
Web site:
This organization was founded in 1982 to educate people about the environmental necessity, economic value, and natural beauty of native plants. Numerous articles regarding landscaping with native plants are available. The site has a children’s link as well as many links to native plant organizations in North America, including gardens and arboreta and state native plant societies.

Life Lab
Web site:
Life Lab, a non-profit organization founded in 1979, is a developer and provider of hands-on garden-centered educational programs that integrate life earth and physical science in a meaningful context. Life Lab assists educators by providing professional development, instructional materials and technical assistance.

National Audubon Society
700 Broadway
New York NY 10003
Web site: 
The mission of the National Audubon Society is to conserve and restore natural ecosystems, focusing on birds and other wildlife for the benefit of humanity and the earth’s biological diversity. Founded in 1905, the National Audubon Society is named for John James Audubon (1785-1851), famed ornithologist, explorer, and wildlife artist. The Web site features a section on Kids and Education, with a listing of educational materials and workshops; bird species profiles; and bird-related topics and links.

National Gardening Association
1100 Dorset St.
South Burlington VT 05403
Web sites:
Founded in 1972, today the nonprofit NGA is focused primarily on children and the ways that gardening enhances education and helps build environmentally responsible adults. Primary efforts include the Web site, a place where teachers, parents, and community organizers can find gardening resources horticultural expertise, networking opportunities, and an on-line store featuring innovative items that support gardening with kids; GrowLab: Activities For Growing Minds, a curriculum utilized in classrooms across the country to help students learn about science and the environment; and Youth Garden Grants, a program that provides valuable grants of gardening tools and supplies awarded annually to schools, youth groups, and community organizations.

National Garden Bureau
1311 Butterfield Road #310
Downers Grove IL 60515
Web site:
The National Gardening Bureau (NGB) disseminates accurate information to the public on behalf of the home garden seed industry. It provides information and resources to garden communicators, such as teachers co-operative extension agents, plant organizations and clubs. The NGB partners with the National Gardening Association to promote gardening education for children and offers resources to teachers for classroom projects. Various materials are offered at the Web site.

National Wildlife Federation
8925 Leesburg Pike
Vienna VA 22184
Web site:
For more than sixty years the National Wildlife Federation has been involved in environmental education. This site includes information on conservation of wildlife and plants and their habitats. It also offers many resources for education at various levels. Features include the Schoolyard Habitat program and the Backyard Wildlife Habitat program.

Plant Conservation Alliance
Bureau of Land Management
1849 C Street NW LSB-204
Washington DC 20240
Web site:

The Plant Conservation Alliance is a consortium of ten federal government Member agencies and over 145 non-federal Cooperators representing various disciplines within the conservation field, including biologists, botanists, horticulturists, habitat preservationists, nature lovers and gardeners. The organization works to solve the problems of native plant extinction and native habitat restoration. The Web site includes a “Celebrating Wildflowers” section, which discusses the importance of plants and plant communities. The site also offers educational materials and programs and links to other Web sites.

Project WILD National Office
5555 Morningside Drive Suite 212
Houston TX 77005
Web site:
Project Wild provides instructional material designed to support state and national academic standards for grades K-12. The activities can be adapted to meet learning requirements for academic disciplines ranging from science and environmental education to social studies, math and language arts. It is a joint project of the Council for Environmental Education (CEE) and the Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (WAFWA). Numerous materials and guidebooks are offered on the Web site, including the publication “Wild School Sites: A Guide to Preparing for Habitat Improvements Projects on School Grounds.” The Web site also lists other educational resources, including Web links, agencies and organizations. Project WILD also has state organizations.

Wild Ones
Web site:
Wild Ones – Natural Landscapers, Ltd., is a non-profit organization with a mission to educate and share information with members and communities to promote biodiversity and environmentally sound practices. The emphasis is on using native species in developing plant communities. The Web site includes the following sections: Journal & Handbook, Chapters, Native Landscaping Conferences, Weed Control Laws, Links to Other Sites

(including curriculum, activity books, design books, etc.)

Beyond the Bean Seed: Gardening Activities for Grades K-6; by Nancy Allen Jurenka and Roseanne J. Blass 1996

A Child’s Garden: Enchanting Outdoor Spaces for Children and Parents; by Molly Dannenmaier; Simon & Schuster

Cultivating a Child’s Imagination Through Gardening; by Nancy Allen Jurenka and Roseanne J. Blass 1996

The Earth Speaks; by Steve von Matre and Bill Weiler; Institute for Earth Education

Earthway; by Carol Petrash; Gryffin Press

Fairy Dusters and Blazing Stars: Exploring Wildflowers with Children; by Suzanne M. Samson

The Family Garden: Clever Things to Do In Around & Under the Garden; by Jan & Michael Gertley

Garden Crafts for Kids; by Diane Rhoades

The Geography of Childhood: Why Children Need Wild Places; by Gary Paul Nabham and Stephen Trimble; Beacon Press

Hands-On Nature: Information and Activities for Exploring the Environment with Children; by Jenepher Lingelbach; Vermont of Natural Science Woodstock VT 05091

Homes for Wildlife: A Planning Guide for Habitat Enhancement on School Grounds; by Marilyn C. Wyzga; NH Fish & Game Dept. ISBN 0-9652156-2-8

In the Three Sisters Garden; by JoAnne Dennee

Look What I Did with a Leaf!; by Morteza E. Sohi

Mapmaking with Children: Sense of Place for the Elementary Years; by David Sobel; Heinemann Westport CT

Natural Learning; by Robin C. Moore & Herb H. Wong

Plants for Play: A Plant Selection Guide for Children’s Outdoor Environments; by Robin C. Moore; MIG Communications

Play For All Guidelines: Planning Design and Management of Outdoor Play Settings for Children; by Robin C. Moore Susan M. Goltsman and Daniel S. Iacofano; MIG Communications

Roots Shoots Buckets & Boots; by Sharon Lovejoy

Sharing Nature with Children; by Joseph Cornell; Dawn Publications

Sharing the Joy of Nature; by Joseph Cornell; Dawn Publications

Sharing the Wonder of Birds with Kids; by Laura Erickson; Pfeifer-Hamilton Publishers

Simple Gardening Fun; by Jacqueline B. Clemens Ph.D.

Sowing the Seeds of Success: How to Start and Sustain A Kid’s Gardening Project in Your Community;
by Marcia Eames-Sheavly and the National Gardening Association

Talking to Fireflies Shrinking the Moon; Edward Duensing; Plume Books

Teaching Peach Through Gardening ; by Anne Petersen; Seattle Tilth Children’s Garden

The Three Sisters: Exploring an Iroquois Garden; by Marcia Eames-Sheavly; Cornell Cooperative Extension

Victory Garden Kid’s Book; by Marjori Waters


Better Homes and Gardens New Junior Gardening Book; by Felder Rushing; Meredith Publishing Group

Forest Child; by Marni McGee; Simon & Schuster ISBN 0-671-86608-7

Garden Crafts for Kids: 50 Great Reasons to Get Your Hands Dirty; by Diane Rhoades; Sterling Publishing Co.

Grandfather Twilight; Barbara Berger

Green Thumbs: A Kid’s Activity Guide to Indoor and Outdoor Gardening; by Laurie Carlson; Chicago Review Press

Interpreting the Great Outdoors: Wildflower Series; by Beverly Magley; Falcon Press

Keepers of the Earth; by Michael J. Caduto and Joseph Bruchak

Kid’s Wildlife Book; by Warner Shedd

The Maybe Garden; by Kimberly Burke-Weiner

National Audubon Society First Field Guide Series; Chanticleer Press

Nature Crafts for Kids; by Gwen Diehn and Terry Krautwurst

Nature Smart: A Family Guide to Nature; by Stan Tekiela and Karen Shaneberg; Adventure Publications

Peterson First Guides; Houghton Mifflin; topics in the series include Birds; Butterflies and Moths; Caterpillars; Fishes; Insects; Mammals; Reptiles and Amphibians; Trees; Urban Wildlife; Wildflowers

Plantworks; by Karen Shaneberg and Stan Tekiela; Adventure Publications

A Seed Grows – My First Look at a Plant’s Life Cycle; by Pamela Hickman; Kid’s Can Press Ltd.

Stellaluna; by Janell Cannon; Harcourt Brace & Co. ISBN 0-15-280217-7

The Turtle and the Moon; Charles Turner




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