Young girl looks at eastern box turtle.

This web page provides a diversity of excellent Forest Service and partner conservation education programs and materials for elementary school teachers and children.

Clearing Houses for Conservation Education Resources for Elementary School

Forest Service Resources

In addition to the Forest Service resources highlighted on this page, consider these excellent resources for your work with elementary school-aged children.

Partner Resources

There is a wide diversity of excellent conservation education resources for elementary school children. The following resources are widely used in the Forest Service and represent the work of our valued partners.   


Junior Forest Ranger

Junior Forest Ranger cover

The Junior Forest Ranger (JFR) program is an exciting way for young people to explore their national forests and grasslands.  The JFR program uses Forest Service science and practices to encourage children 7 through 13 to enjoy and appreciate nature. JFR motivates children to explore the natural and cultural world, and embrace their responsibility to it. Go to the Junior Forest Ranger website for additional program information, downloading the JFR activity guide, and access to the JFR Clubhouse.

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Discover the Forest Web site

Screen Shot from www.discovertheforest.org website

The new Discover the Forest website is a partnership between the US Forest Service and the Ad Council. This exciting and dynamic website offers resources to help get kids out in the woods -- exploring nature in their own backyard. This website is especially designed for tweens -- kids in Grades 4th through 8th -- and features exciting, interactive activities and games; an online "nature finder"; and resources for parents and teachers.

Be sure to visit the site often as it grows and evolves.

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Smiling girl with monarch

MonarchLIVE! A Distance Learning Adventure brought the magic of monarchs and their migration to school children throughout the Western Hemisphere. Through a series of live, interactive, web-based broadcasts and a rich website, the program will help students learn about monarch life history, citizen science and what students can do to help monarchs.


INvesti-gator Gator

The Investi-gator is a free science journal for upper elementary level students.  This journal is created in partnership with the USDA Forest Service and the Cradle of Forestry Interpretive Association.  The journal focuses on contemporary, Forest Service research and is written in the format of a scientific article.

Robert Bateman's Get to Know Program

Get to Know Logo

The Forest Service is proud to partner with world renowned artist Robert Bateman's "Get to Know" (Your Wild Neighbors) program and calendar contest. Since 2000, the Canadian-based contest has featured the art work, photos and writing that demonstrates the impact nature has on youth.

Ecosystem Matters

EM Racoon graphic

Ecosystem Matters is an interdisciplinary conservation education curriculum developed by Region 2 of the US Forest Service in 1995. It is jampacked with a range of excellent, hands-on lesson plans. Instructional activities within Ecosystem Matters are designed for easy use by both educators and resource managers. Classroom teachers, scout leaders, nature camp instructors, forest rangers, naturalists, and others will all find the activities relevant, fun, quick-to-prepare, and user-friendly.