Field ecology JHSE

DIY Field Education

Field Education in Your Own Backyard

At Teton Science Schools, we strongly believe learning can happen anywhere, anytime. You don’t need to visit the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem to learn about the natural world –there is plenty to learn right where you are! During these uncertain times, we encourage you to explore your own place, thoughts and emotions. Check out our DIY Field Education lessons to get started!

Making Observations

Making observations is the foundation for becoming a skilled naturalist and scientist. We are constantly making observations each and everyday, often without even acknowledging the process. What does it really mean to observe something? How can we become better observers?

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Magnifying glasses


Contribute to citizen science with iNaturalist! iNaturalist is a free on-line platform that allows students to record biodiversity observations, interact with experts, and contribute to a global Citizen Science project. All you need to use iNaturalist is a smartphone or tablet.

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Sit Spots

Explore the world with your senses! Amidst the busy pace of our lives, it can be hard to find the time to slow down and connect to the natural world around us. “Sit spots” are places we can go to sit quietly, observe, and reflect.

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Field Journaling

Connect to your world with a pen and paper. Field Journaling–the practice of observing what we see in nature and recording it on paper–can be a great tool for scientific discovery and for deepening our understanding and connection to the natural world.

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Field Journal

Teachers: Bring TSS to Your Students!

Are you interested in designing a custom, virtual experience for your students? Reach out to TSS at fieldeducation@tetonscience.org for more information.

Additional Resources

Love Listening to Podcasts? 

  • Getting Smart – a podcast that covers a variety of education topics in K-12, higher ed, and lifelong learning.
  • Science Friday – find tons of news and entertaining, real time stories about science. 
  • Science Rules with Bill Nye – everything you ever wondered about science, and more, is right here! 
  • From Tree to Shining Tree with Annie McEwen and Breen Farrell – learn about the fascinating, hidden and resilient underground network of fungi and bacteria that thrive beneath trees. Special podcast produced through RadioLab.
  • The Wild with Chris Morgan – explore how nature survives and thrives alongside (and sometimes despite) humans. 
  • Generation Anthropocene – explore stories and conversations about planetary change.  
  • For the Wild – a podcast that offers an anthology of the anthropocene. Various authors, writers, artists. 

Missing your favorite museum? Many are still offering cool ways to engage, explore, and contribute to the arts. Check out some of these opportunities below: 

  • Right here in Jackson Hole, the National Museum of Wildlife Art has created a weekly virtual exhibit of wildlife art inspired by a curated piece, and invites the public to contribute their own interpretations of the original to add to the collection. 
  • Visit the Smithsonian learning lab to explore a rich variety of trainings, resources, and support to assist students, parents and teachers as we face new learning challenges.
  • The American Natural History Museum celebrated the 50th anniversary of Earth Day this year with an all day EarthFest celebration. Check out the link to access the many neat resources from that event, including workshops, videos, speakers, and activities for learners of every age that you can do from home. ANHM also has a great repository of online resources for kids called “ology” – the “study of…” –  where kids can virtually explore many of the current galleries. 

Want to visit our National Parks? 

  • Wishing you were able to visit Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks, or a park near your home? Now you can explore these special places through Virtual tours of National Parks!

Educational Resources: 

  • Chicago Botanic Garden: Project Budburst.  Become a citizen scientist and contribute your own observations on your local flora.  You will also find age specific activities and resources for families to do together and learn more about plants.
  • National Geographic offers several at-home and classroom science education lessons and activities. One that we really like is this one on mapping biodiversity in your home ecosystem. 
  • City Nature Challenge: Offers an opportunity for learners of all ages, particularly youth, to document the biodiversity in and around urban landscapes, using iNaturalist. This is a great opportunity to contribute in real time to citizen science, no matter where you might live! 
  • ACES – created printable journals for students to fill out and use on a daily basis that has prompts and walks them through phenology
  • Check out these cool BEETLES design principles on engaging in distance learning.
  • Macroinvertebrate Coloring Sheets: Curious about the critters living in your local stream and what they mean for stream health?  Explore a few species with these handouts and start to create more of your own!