Civic Science: Inquiry to Action - Children's Environmental Literacy Foundation

Civic Science: Inquiry to Action

Spark Curiosity, Inspire Change

CELF’s Civic Science: Inquiry to Action program engages students in hands-on learning to identify, analyze, and solve real-world environmental issues that impact their schools, neighborhoods, and beyond.

By navigating the connection between science, society, and policy, children are empowered to make a positive impact on our world. Led by classroom teachers trained and supported by CELF, students are transformed into vital global citizens, ready to face tomorrow’s challenges head-on.

In 2021 we mobilized…
18,800+ Students
500+ Teachers
in 4 states
…all during a global pandemic!

Why Civic Science Matters

Civic Science: Inquiry to Action is what every student, teacher, and community needs now. Environmental issues affect everyone—whether we live in big cities or small towns.  It’s vital for students to understand the impact of environmental degradation and the importance of clean air, soil, waterways, parks, and playgrounds. As biodiversity loss threatens human survival, future generations are critical stewards of the globe.

Student-led Research Examines…

The impact of idling buses, indoor cleaning products, and expressways on air quality

How precipitation affects pollution

What air quality does to wetlands

Expired school air filters and what they mean for indoor quality

How the community benefits from school gardens

Issues of equity, environmental justice, and more!

How It Works

CELF Civic Science: Inquiry to Action is an exciting semester- or year-long program that engages students in project- and place-based STEM learning outside the classroom. Students will conduct environmental research in their communities with field-expert guidance. They’ll collect, analyze, share their data, and collaborate to determine causes and design solutions. Finally, students will present their findings to an audience of peers and policymakers, inspiring innovation, and action! 

Finding Solutions, Together

Civic Science: Inquiry to Action connects students and teachers with local leaders, community partners, and experts to identify and solve our communities’ environmental challenges. CELF partners with top healthcare facilities, higher-education, and government agencies to bring expertise to student-led projects. Civil Science: Inquiry to Action builds community and empowers students to find their voices to affect change.

Meet Our Partners! CELF’s New York partners include the Mount Sinai Pediatric Environmental Health Specialty Unit, Habitat Map, NYC DOE Department of Health, and CUNY School of Law.

Who benefits? You! Find out more:

Let’s Make it Happen!

CELF’s Civic Science: Inquiry to Action Program is in Los Angeles, Houston, New York City, and throughout the Lower Hudson Valley. Reach out to CELF now, and let’s bring this program to your school, too! Civic Science: Inquiry to Action is offered both as a blended professional learning program and a fully virtual professional learning course. Formats include a spring program, school- or district-based PD, and a summer institute. All programs lead to an authentic Student Symposium with local decision-makers.

Summer Institute Registration Open

Virtual: Engaging Students
in Civic Science and Action

Location: Virtual
Dates: July 19-21, 26-28, 2022
Time: 2:00 – 4:30pm ET

This 6-day (15 hours) online institute will introduce CELF’s Inquiry to Action Framework within the context of your classroom. Participants will learn the skills and knowledge to develop a project to engage student learning through inquiry, place and action. Pathways to topics such as water, biodiversity and air will be explored. Teachers will walk away with an Inquiry to Action project planner ready to implement in the fall.

Tuition: $300 ($250 group rate)
Scholarship Application Here

Download Flyer

Registration Coming Soon

Civic Science: Inquiry to Action
Virtual Learning Course

The Spring 2023 Civic Science Program is not open yet. More information coming soon.

Contact Us

For program costs and info:
Vicky Garufi, Director of Education

For school districts in the Houston-area:
Lisa Gianukos

New York City educators, register for ASPDP credit:
Lisa Mechaley


Find out which Summer Institute is right for you... Attend a Virtual Open House!
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