We want to connect you with resources in your region that will help you and your family Play, Explore and Learn in nature. This page has useful links to things like curriculum, training opportunities, and tangible resources like gear or equipment. These resources come from our partners and are not an endorsement by TCiN or Nature Rocks Texas, but simply meant to be helpful to families.

Supporting you and your family while you stay safe at home during the COVID-19 Pandemic

During this time of global health crisis, we would like to support you and your family while you are staying at home by giving you ideas to get out into nature in your own backyard, to encourage siblings to play and learn together at home, and to support or supplement your family’s science education. Over the next few months, we will be posting 6 lessons per week from our Ecologist School Guidebook (which is currently being published by Texas A&M University Press). This informal science education program allows people to earn badges in 16 branches of science by learning in nature together. The lessons in the guidebook are intended for all ages all together and most can be done in your own backyard, or even in your house, with minimal materials.

National Wildlife Federation has over 1,000 lesson plans designed to introduce students to life science, ecology, wildlife biology, scientific identification and observation. All lesson plans are aligned to the National Science Education Standards.

The Austin ISD At-Home Learning site will continue to remain accessible during the summer of 2020 so that students, teachers, and caregivers can access resources and learn how to navigate online tools. Parents of students served by Special Education and Section 504 services are encouraged to continue engaging with your campus and district contact person to support your student’s individualized needs. Families are encouraged to visit this site frequently for updates. We all hope to see you soon!

The NOAA Office of Ocean Exploration and Research provides a variety of learning and teaching tools designed to engage broad audiences and enhance America’s environmental literacy through the excitement of ocean discovery. In this Educational Materials section, you will find links to hundreds of lesson plans written by teachers for teachers, lessons built around specific ocean exploration expeditions across the globe.

The NOAA Office of Ocean Exploration and Research provides a variety of learning and teaching tools designed to engage broad audiences and enhance America’s environmental literacy through the excitement of ocean discovery. In this Educational Materials section, you will find links to hundreds of lesson plans written by teachers for teachers, lessons built around specific ocean exploration expeditions across the globe.

Texas Parks and Wildlife offers tackle for fishing at multiple sites around the state.  You simply check out the tackle like you would a library book and return it when you are done.  Also when you are fishing in a state park, you do not need a fishing license, but you do need to follow the fishing guidelines for size and limits. Find out which state parks have the tackle loaner program near you.

Texas Wildlife Association offers on-demand webinars about wildlife and conservation.  You can view these as an individual or use them in the classroom or in a home school setting.

Your child can become a junior ranger and even check out an Explore Pack at most state parks.  Find out how your child can become a junior ranger and start exploring at a state park near you.

Project WILD is "Wildlife in Learning Design," a Kindergarten - 12th grade environmental and conservation education program emphasizing awareness, appreciation and understanding of wildlife and natural resources.  It can be used by classroom teachers, environmental educators, park and nature center personnel, and youth group leaders. It is interdisciplinary and supplementary and can be used to teach basic skills in science, social studies, language arts, math, art, music and physical education. More information at Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.

Looking for science lessons that are focused on aquatic life and ecosystems in Texas instead of some far away place? Texas Aquatic Science is designed for students to learn about the ponds, lakes, marshes, streams, rivers, oceans and wildlife that are in our own communities.  It also has lessons about what types of careers are availble to young people in the aquatic science field. This curriculum is free and open to the public to use.