Published on November 16, 2021

Five Years of Partnership to Support Climate Education

Students testing forest soils with an outdoor cup experiment © Phil Doyle
© Phil Doyle

Thanks to funding from the Northampton Education Foundation, Mass Audubon educators from Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary educators have brought our Life in a Changing Climate program to more than 1,800 elementary and high school students throughout the district over the past five years.

We're so grateful to the NEF for their consistent and generous support of this climate literacy work that will prepare students to respond with resilience to the challenges of our times.

Hands-On Learning & Inspiration

Students examining soil samples in their classroom © Phil Doyle
© Phil Doyle

Through the Life in a Changing Climate program, students grow their science and nature knowledge by exploring several climate-related topics:

  • Climate science (carbon cycle & greenhouse gas effect)
  • Local climate impacts including a close look at maple sugaring
  • Climate solutions such as alternative energy sources
  • Carbon storage in forest & soils
  • Community Science
  • Forest resilience
  • Climate Justice
  • Community Vulnerability mapping

Classroom lessons are complimented with hands-on activities out in nature, either right in the school yard or through a field trip to Arcadia. In 2019, students very literally got their hands dirty during a session about soils led by Program Coordinator Brittany Gutermuth, Environmental Educators Laura Beltran and Kim Hoff, a cohort of UMass graduate students, and volunteer field walk leaders from Arcadia.

"This innovate program helps students understand what is happening with the climate, why it is happening, and what they can do to make a difference," said Arcadia Sanctuary Director Jonah Keane.