Living Classroom is seeking volunteers who are excited about sharing their love of nature with children through teaching our school garden-based lessons. Thevolunteers, once trained, become official Living Classroom docents and they lead and assist lessons from Kindergarten through 8th grade in 9 public in Los Altos. Opportunities for docents are also available in Palo Alto and Mountain View public schools. Lesson topics range from introduction to photosynthesis and decomposition to local ecology and biodiversity, to setting up plant experiments to learn about the impact of soil or light quality on plant growth. Some lessons involve planting and harvesting edibles including a Three Sisters Native American garden, winter wheat turned into pretzels, and winter veggies used to make soup after harvest. Most lessons focus on life science topics but many integrate social studies, math and nutrition.
Docents can pick grades, lesson topics or schools they wish to teach in so that each docent can focus on those lessons or student age range they are most comfortable with and enjoy most.
We hold three seasonal training sessions each school year on Monday mornings lasting for 5 weeks in the fall, and 4 weeks in the winter and spring. Volunteers who are not able to attend the Monday morning trainings can learn "apprenticeship" style by observing and then assisting with lessons. Docents must be available for at least four hours per month, sufficient to teach two lessons per month, including transportation, set up and clean up time, during the 8:15 a.m. - 2:45 p.m. school day when all of our lessons are taught.
- Math / Science Instruction
- Teaching / Instruction
- Habitat Restoration
- Environmental Education
Good Match For
Requirements & Commitment
- Orientation or Training
- Minimum of 4 hours per month
- Must have available time during school day 8:15 a.m. - 2:45 p.m.