Environmental Education Resources for Teachers

Download Documents Below (PDF files)

Very Important Plants (VIP) Vocabulary (Grades 3-5): Help students master the vocabulary used in Lotusland’s Fourth Grade Outreach Program

VIP Vocabulary Flash Cards: Print these out to quiz students on their botanical knowledge

VIP Vocabulary Crossword Puzzle: A crossword puzzle using our VIP vocabulary list

VIP Botany Blaster: A worksheet to match botanical vocabulary with their definitions


Botanical Writing Prompts: Meet California Common Core standards for writing (Grades 1-5) while engaging students in nature appreciation

Save the Cycads! Writing Prompt: Read about Cycads, some of the most endangered plants in the world, and come up with a plan to help save these prehistoric plants.

• Meets W.1. Write opinion pieces on topics or texts, supporting a point of view with reasons and information.

Can you SEED the difference? Writing Prompt: Use your naturalist observation skills to identify plant structures and explain their functions.

• Meets W.2. Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas and information clearly.

Plant Superpowers Writing Prompt: Choose a plant. Imagine its plant adaptations are super powers and write a story of your super hero plant.

• Meets W.3. Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, descriptive details, and clear event sequences.

Lotusland Poetry Prompts: An assortment of poetry prompts to help students express appreciation of Lotusland and the natural world

Life Science Teaching Units: These units meet Next Generation Science Standards. They can be taught sequentially or as stand-alone activities.

Pollinators Investigators Unit: This unit uses pollinators as a theme to learn about animal senses. It engages students in the naturalistic observation of pollinators around their school grounds, leads them through an exploration of hummingbird adaptations, and wraps up with an investigation of hummingbird senses that incorporates science, engineering, arts, and mathematics.

• Meets Fourth Grade Life Sciences Standard 2: Use a model to describe that animals use different types of information through their senses, process the information in their brain, and respond to information in different ways.

• Meets Science and Engineering Practices (SEP): Students will plan and carry out investigations (SEP-3), analyze and interpret data (SEP-4) and use mathematics and computational thinking (SEP-5) as they engage in argument from evidence of their explorations (SEP-7).

Compost Critters Unit: This unit uses the process of decomposition in compost piles to help students explore the interconnectedness of ecosystems, the role of consumers in food chains, and how people play a role in soil ecosystems.

• Meets Cross Cutting Concept 4: A system is an organized group of related objects or components; models can be used for understanding and predicting the behavior of systems.

• Meets Cross Cutting Concept 5: Tracking energy and matter flows, into, out of, and within systems helps one understand their system’s behavior.

Compost Critters Game Cards: Download these to play the game in the Compost Critters Unit