California Regional Environmental
Education Community

California Department of Education,
STEM Office

Region 5:
Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Monterey & San Benito Counties
Spring 2017

Environmental Literacy is taking root in California schools! 

In the above graphic, you see (in highly abbreviated form!) the Environmental Principles and Concepts that are now written into both our State's Science and History Curriculum Frameworks. These "EP&Cs" will guide new curriculum development so that students leave our school system with an understanding of the science and decision-making that is essential to managing environmental resources. Click on the image for more information.

California's Blueprint for Environmental Literacy is also moving forward! In case you missed the wonderful article in EdSource, you can read it here: California Renews Push for Environmental Literacy in Schools. To keep track of developments that are paving the way for environmental education for all students, you can subscribe to the listserv set up by California Department of Education and its partners. To receive email notifications related to the environment and science, subscribe to the environmental-science e-mail list by sending a "blank" message to  By subscribing to the environmental-science e-mail list, you will receive will information including: Environmental Education and Environmental Literacy Steering Committee related updates, Science Updates from the CDE STEM Office, and other important announcements related to STEM education.

And for our local opportunities, keep reading below! 

- Amity Sandage, CREEC Coordinator, Region 5
What's New in Region 5
Solar Kit Workshop

New Local Grants and Contests in Region 5

PG&E's Solar Suitcase Program applications are due April 30 and we have a few new student opportunities with deadlines fast approaching. Follow the link to check them out . . .
Read more about Local Grants and Contests  (PDF OR opens in a new window)

Last Chance! Register for EEI and Project WET in Santa Cruz for K-12 Teachers and Environmental Educators

Explore the three dimensions of NGSS in a 5 E instructional model and take home classroom ready curricula to support NGSS, CCSS ELA, and History-Social Science. March 25!   
(PDF OR opens in a new window)

Life Lab Professional Development Workshops

Upcoming Workshops include Common Core in the Garden, The Growing Classroom Garden-based Intensive, Early Childhood in the Garden, and more!    
(PDF OR opens in a new window)

Forestry Institute for Teachers (FIT) It's Free! It's Fun! And you get Project WILD and Project Learning Tree

FIT brings together natural resource specialists and teachers from rural and urban settings for one week, working side by side to gain a deeper understanding of forest ecosystems and human use of natural resources. Summer Registration open.
(PDF OR opens in a new window)

NGSS Inquiry through Project WET--Using Restoration and Gardens--in beautiful San Juan Bautista

K - 8 Teachers will learn to teach science through hands on activities in the classroom, garden, or in the natural environment and use NGSS Three-Dimensional Lesson Planning  . . .   
(PDF OR opens in a new window)

Elkhorn Slough's Teacher on the Reserve on March 18

Explore the unique outdoor classroom that is the Elkhorn Slough Reserve in this one-day workshop introducing K-12 teachers to the trails, the Microscope Learning Lab and . . .   
(PDF OR opens in a new window)

Go Deep with Water Quality and Advanced Purification in this Workshop for Teachers of Grades 5-12

Water quality is the theme of this free Project WET workshop, which includes a tour of the Purification Center. Participants will receive a the Project WET Curriculum and . . .   
(PDF OR opens in a new window)

Hiking Leadership Training: How to Plan, Organize and Lead Fun and Safe Hikes with Student and Youth

Topics covered during the training include: fun games for the trail, leave no trace, the natural history of open spaces, risk management, meal planning, navigation, and . . .   
(PDF OR opens in a new window)

Early Bird Registration for the Sierra Institute ends 3/15!

Explore the Sierra Nevada with scientists and K-12 educators during this 4-day investigation into the water cycle, impacts of climate change on biodiversity, and the three dimensions . . .  
(PDF OR opens in a new window)
Local Conferences and Events
Santa Clara County STEAM Symposium
Offered by Santa Clara County Office of Education
Wingding Family Fest
Skyline Ridge Open Space Preserve


Sources for teachers and providers

View Funding Resources
Disclaimer: These professional learning opportunities and resources are intended merely to provide access to information. The California Department of Education (CDE) has not reviewed these opportunities or resources for effectiveness or alignment with the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). CDE does not warrant or guarantee the effectiveness or results of any opportunity or resource that may be made available through this communication network. The inclusion of an opportunity or resource is neither an endorsement nor recommendation by CDE. Please excuse formatting errors that may result from the software application used to distribute this newsletter.

The California Regional Environmental Education Community (CREEC) Network is an educational project supported by the California Department of Education in collaboration with state, regional and local partners. Its expansive communication network provides educators with access to high-quality educational resources to enhance the environmental literacy of California Students.

Shannon Gordon, CREEC Network State Contact,, STEM Office, California Dept. of Education, 1430 N Street, Suite 4309, Sacramento, CA 95814

In Region 5, CREEC is housed and supported by Santa Cruz County Office of Education 
Amity Sandage, Region 5 CREEC Coordinator, 

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