Since 1992, Seeds to Trees: A Field Based Environmental Education Program for Public Schools has introduced NYC children to science and nature in the urban environment through classroom activities and unparalleled field experiences. Seeds to Trees reinforces core academic skills while continually experimenting with new models and strategies.
Seeds to Trees supports academic objectives by presenting lessons that relate to mandated curricula and scope and sequence, and trains teachers to use city parks as extensions of their classrooms by helping them to introduce concepts of forest ecology, park stewardship and preservation to children. Seeds to Trees blends professional development sessions (teacher credit is available), in-class sessions and outdoor field experiences in natural areas to produce a high quality, invigorating educational experience.
Through a unique mix of lessons and resources that address different learning styles, Seeds to Trees has been enormously successful with all learners, from special education, inclusion, mainstream and English Language Learners to high performing students.
Seeds to Trees Early Childhood Program: City Parks Education’s interdisciplinary nature and science pilot is specifically designed for children who are 3-4 years old. This program emphasizes science observation, sensory awareness, creative expression, literacy and analytical skills development. In a series of 3-5 sessions, plant and animal themes are introduced via songs, stories, movement and craft projects.
Seeds to Trees for Elementary Schools (1st-4th Grades): Seeds to Trees offers an inquiry-based, dynamic program in the span of four months—either in the fall or in the spring. The program includes lessons on topics relating to the natural environment and environmental stewardship, such as learning about the forest ecosystem and the effects of pollution on the health of a forest and the water supply, among other topics.
- One field experience to a local forest and/or natural areas led by a City Parks Education educator
- Four stimulating in-school sessions with hands-on tools and instruments (where a local park is in close proximity and weather-permitting, one of the four can be tailored for a local park as well)
- Valuable educational materials & supplementary lessons
- Technical assistance throughout the school year
Seeds to Trees for Middle Schools (6th & 7th Grades): Seeds to Trees offers an age-appropriate program for public middle school classes that is aligned with the latest Scope and Sequence. The program is delivered over a nine-month period, from September to June. Available to 6th and 7th grades, this unique learning experience includes:
- Six in-class lessons
- Three field experiences to natural areas throughout the City, where students explore contrasting ecosystems, use scientific tools and equipment, and become enthralled with their local environment
- Professional Development opportunities for educators and on-site technical assistance
- Resources, materials, and a plethora of stimulating lesson plans and applications