The Conservancy’s Urban Conservation program in New York City hosted a large-scale tree-planting event at Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge.
A volunteer plants a tree The Conservancy’s Urban Conservation program in New York City hosted a large-scale tree-planting event at Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge. © Devan King/TNC

Nature Lab

Youth Education Resources for Ages 14-18

All Resources for Ages 14-18 (U.S Grades 9-12)

Download our educational resources for students in high school. Lessons cover urban runoff, biomimicry, climate change, and more! Each lesson plan comes with a free teacher's guide and video.

Great Bear Rainforest
Great Bear Rainforest The Koeye River flows through Heiltsuk traditional territory on the remote mainland central coast of British Columbia about 30 nautical miles south of Bella Bella, Canada. © Mark Godfrey/TNC

Recording the Rainforest

In this lesson, students will explore a compelling question: How can we use science and acoustic technology to care for the land and protect the plants and animals in one of the world’s most biodiverse regions?  

Watch Video | Download Teacher Guide

Stormwater runoff.
Stormwater runoff Stormwater pollution is caused when rainwater falls on impervious surfaces where it mixes with pollutants before flowing into our cities' sewer systems and rivers. © Tyrone Turner

Urban Runoff: Stormwater Management

Whether a city is rebuilding after a devastating storm or simply looking to revitalize and improve, working with nature rather than against it is a key part of the process of redesigning our cities to be more resilient and sustainable. This lesson introduces students to the problem of urban runoff and a variety of nature-based design ideas and solutions. 

Watch Video | Download Teacher Guide

Egret on bags of oysters An egret stands on one of the 23,000 bags of oysters that line the edge of a mud flat on Mobile Bay in Alabama. © Erika Nortemann/TNC

Understanding Climate Change

Students will explore the relationship between weather and climate using local data to derive their own definitions. Students will examine the ways that humans have impacted Earth by analyzing real data and online interactives to discover why scientists are calling this the “Anthropocene.”

Watch Video | Download Teacher Guide

Chingaza Park, Colombia,
Chingaza Park, Colombia, in the Eastern Cordillera of the Andes. © Juan Arredondo

Biomimicry: Water Security

In this lesson, students follow the journey of water from an area of rural Colombia to its capital city, Bogotá to learn about a special ecosystem high above the city that makes it possible for Bogotá to have clean water year-round. Students will use these plants as inspiration for their own efforts at biomimicry.

Watch Video  | Download Teacher Guide | Download PPT

Waters of Páramo
Stream in Páramo near Bogotá A gorge in an Altoantino forest near Bogotá. © TNC Colombia

Finding your Flow: Watersheds

Students will use a video about water in Colombia as a jumping off point to explore the issues facing the watershed in which they live and to identify ways they can become involved in protecting their water along its journey.

Watch Video | Download Teacher Guide

Blue Creek
Blue Creek Underwater photo of a chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha in Blue Creek, a tributary of the Klamath River in northern California.  © Kevin Arnold

Ecosystem Interdependence: Managing Salmon

In this lesson plan, students address the impact of unsustainable fishing practices. Salmon runs are an important factor in cycling several nutrients. Overfishing salmon reduces the forest’s capacity for growth and regeneration. Students explore the connection between the size of salmon runs and forest health.

Watch Video |  Download Teacher Guide

Living shoreline along the Florida coastline reduces erosion.
Living shoreline along the Florida coastline reduces erosion. Living shoreline along the Florida coastline reduces erosion. © Erika Nortemann/The Nature Conservancy

Coastline Erosion Protection

There are multiple ways to protect coastlines. In this lesson, students compare strong (but expensive) construction materials with the less robust (but cheaper) oyster reefs. Students use an online tool to find historic tide data in a selected coastal location and explore the use of different materials in protecting coastlines. 

Watch Video | Download Teacher Guide

The small-boat fleet at
The small-boat fleet at Ancon on the coast of central Peru has agreed to adopt science-based measures that have led to better catches. © Jason Houston

Sustainable Fishing

In this set of activities, students explore sustainable fishing through a specific case study in Peru, which is home to one of the world’s largest fisheries. The challenges to the health of fisheries in the waters off the coast of Peru represent a microcosm of the larger world as similar challenges are faced by fisheries everywhere.

Watch Video  | Download Teacher Guide

Kahlil Kettering,
Kahlil Kettering, Director for the MD/DC Chapter of The Nature Conservancy © Karine Aigner

Virtual STEM Career Fair

A career in STEM can be incredibly exciting—especially when it’s your job to study American black bears in the Western Great Basin, to advocate for the benefits nature provides to people in cities, or to act as a test engineer on airplane engines.

Watch Video | Download Teacher Guide

Explore Our Youth Curriculum

Access resources aligned to The Nature Conservancy's research and designed specifically for a young audience and classroom use.