CREA in the Schools
What We Do
CREA Educators have advanced ecological literacy in public schools since 2007 by providing innovative outdoor, nature- and place-based learning experiences for elementary students.
We lead 3.5 hour field trips for K-5 classes at our Ecology Center, located at the Cathance River Nature Preserve in Topsham. Each field trip uses uses a combination of hands-on, experiential outdoor and indoor activities – centered around a single topic (Habitat, Pond Life, Energy, Geology, etc) – that fulfill Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) standards for that topic.
After years of observing student engagement and learning on our field trips, many of our collaborating K-5 teachers and administrators see the benefits of our nature-based instruction and methods and want to learn them.
CREA Educators have begun to lead workshops for district elementary teachers on how to teach nature-based science using hands-on, experiential methods; developed place-based lessons that meet NGSS standards; role modeled place-based teaching for teachers; helped develop district science curricula for elementary grades; and, translated NGSS standards into workable lesson plans for elementary grades.
We have developed particularly close relationships with two school districts – MSAD 75 (Topsham, Harpswell, Bowdoin, and Bowdoinham) and Brunswick School District, but work with other schools as well.
Bring our programs to your elementary classroom
Our CREA Educators can custom design nature- and place-based lessons that meet Next Generation Science Standards for any elementary grade.
Visit us in Topsham, Maine
We offer programs for all ages at our unique off-grid Ecology Center. We use innovative teaching methods – Explore First, Explain Later – that engage all students. Programs combine outdoor and indoor learning using hands-on, experiential methods and state of the art equipment.
CREA Online Games
History and Geology Resources
Pond and River Resources
Sarah Rodgers, Educator and CREA School Program Coordinator
Carey Truebe, Educator and CREA School Program Coordinator