NC State Extension

Project Learning Tree

PLTLogo_NC_outlineProject Learning Tree ® (PLT) is an award winning, multi-disciplinary environmental education program for educators and students in PreK-grade 12. PLT is a program of the American Forest Foundation. It is one of the most widely used environmental education programs in the United States and abroad, and continues to set the standard for environmental education excellence.

In North Carolina, PLT is sponsored by NC Cooperative Extension Services, the NC Forestry Association, and the NC Forest Service. To receive the Project Learning Tree materials, you must attend a professional development workshop. Workshops are held throughout the state and led by trained PLT Facilitators. To see a listing of upcoming PLT workshops in North Carolina, please take a look at the workshop calendar.

Need to contact the NC PLT State Coordinator?
Renee Strnad

PLT helps students learn how to think, not what to think, about the environment.

PLT meets state and national education standards, and is correlated the the North Carolina Standard Course of Study for grades K-8 in language arts, math, science, and social studies.  The curriculum materials provide the tools educators need to bring the environment into the classroom and their students into the environment. Though ‘tree’ is in the name, the curriculum looks at natural and built environments and covers topics ranging from forests, wildlife, and water, to community planning, waste management and energy.

PLT is a network of 3,000 grassroots volunteers and over 120 state coordinators that work with formal and nonformal educators, school staff, state agencies, foresters, businesses, civic organizations, museums, nature centers, and youth groups to provide professional development programs.

PLT improves student learning.
Through PLT, students learn environmental content that correlates to national and state standards in science, social studies, language arts, math, and other subjects – and strengthen their critical thinking, team building, and problem solving skills.

PLT works for teachers and other educators because:

  • PLT materials are aligned with state and national education standards.
  • PLT is broad based: topics cover the total environment and are local, national, and global in scope.
  • PLT provides the one great lesson a week you wish you had time to plan.
  • PLT is adaptable to many contexts: classroom, playground, nature center, home.
  • PLT can be easily adapted to various audiences: PreK-12 students, Girl Scout and Boy Scout troops, nature center and museum visitors, 4-H clubs, and other community groups.
  • PLT is cross-curricular: easy to infuse its environmental lessons into science, language arts, special education, and other classes.

PLT Connects Children to Nature

Project Learning Tree gets kids outside.  We provide the training, resources, and support teachers need to help them make outdoor experiences part of everyday lesson plans.  We have also adapted many PLT activities for parents and families to use with children in the outdoors

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