Online Curricula and Lesson Plans
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Name of CurriculumGrade LevelNumber of Lesson PlansTagsDescriptionWebsite
A Handful of Seeds2nd-6th15math, science, language arts, elementary schoolThis curriculum covers science concepts like germination, seed characteristics, and tropism and a number of language arts lessons including vocabulary and Paul Fleischman's book Seedfolks.
American Heart Association Teaching GardensPre K-5th11preschool, early childhood, elementary school, nutrition, planting, cookingThe American Heart Association's set of lessons engages students in fun, educational, hands-on investigations of nutritious fruits and vegetables in and out of the garden.
Captain Planet Project Learning GardenK-5th18 (3 per grade)kindergarden, elementary school, pre and post test, social studies, history, academic standards, cooking, growingThe Captain Planet’s Project Learning Garden Program encourages educators to consider the school garden as an extension of the traditional classroom rather than an extracurricular activity. All Learning Garden lessons are tied to common core curriculum standards, encourage inquiry-based learning, provide hands-on experiential learning, and guide the teacher towards the next generation science standards. Each lesson also provides an environmental stewardship learning opportunity.
Cooking With Kids K- 6th34: 11 fruit and vegetable tasting lessons for 3 grade levels (K-1, 2-3, 4-6) and 1 sample cooking lesson (grades 2-3)common core, tasting, cooking, nutrition, culture, elementary school, New Mexico Academic Standards, National Health Education StandardsCooking with Kids motivates and empowers elementary school students to develop healthy eating habits through hands-on learning with fresh, affordable foods from diverse cultural traditions. Through cooking classes and tasting classes, students explore varieties of foods using all of their senses, have fun, and exercise choice. Two cooking and 33 tasting classes available free to download with registration (free).
Dig Art!PreK-12th22art, craft, music, preschool, elementary school, middle school, high schoolThis collection of art activities in the garden spans a wide range of ages: some lessons can be adapted up or down (drawing/painting in the garden) others are more appropriate to older students (photography, plant dyeing). Activities also include musical instrument-making.
Dig In!5th-6th10harvesting, tasting, recipes, nutrition, food systemsThis curriculum created by the USDA Food and Nutrition Service offers ten inquiry-based lessons in nutrition education. You can download the teacher's guide and individual lesson plans online.
Discovering Our Food System from Cornell Garden Based Learning6th-12th35New York state standards, middle school, high school, food systems, nutrition, action project Created by Cornell Garden Based Learning, this curriculum introduces students in grades 6-12 to global and local food systems, nutrition, food labeling and advertising and then turns students' attention to their own school and communities with a "lunchroom laboratory" investigation and action project. Available to purchase in hard-copy for $20 or free to download as a PDF.
Eat.Think.GrowK-5thMultipleelementary school, gardening, science, tastingOrganized by grade level and season, this online resource offers garden-based lessons for spring, winter, and fall. Lessons have a "place-based focus" and highlight exploration, observation, data-collection, harvesting, and cooking.
EcoHealth 1016th-8th10climate change, science, national science education standards, middle school, high schoolRecognized as a National Resources Defence Council "pick of the week," EcoHealth 101 offers ten lessons in the science of climate change, the environment, and human health. This curriculum provides "chapters" with readings and lesson plans, including a good chapter and lesson plan for genetically modified foods.
Education Outside Lesson PathwayK-5thMultiplescience, nutrition, art, food systems, elementaryThe Education Outside Lesson Pathway is an outdoor education curriculum framework that allows educators to plan a comprehensive and sequenced outdoor education program by selecting lessons that are nested into a larger, coherent structure. It is arranged by themes – Basics, Soil, Plants, Creatures, Ecology, Materials, and Food – that can then be organized into an academic schedule, building the key concepts of each theme over a K-5 educational experience.
empowerME4Life3rd-7th8elementary school, middle school, health, nutrition, physical educationAn 8-session evidence-based course, empowerME4Life equips youth with the skills and knowledge to eat better and move more. Each 45-minute session builds on the last to reinforce lifelong skills for nutrition and fitness. Teen and adult facilitators can use empowerME4Life in afterschool and community environments to teach the 5 steps to healthier living.
Farm to Desk WikiPreK-12thMultipleelementary school, middle school, high school, pre-k, math, science, ELA, health, social studies, art Online database of lessons organized by age level and subject area. Resources are aligned with National Common Core State Standards, and help teachers to integrate food content into their lessons. Find mini-lesson activities, independent practice questions, and more grouped by grade level and learning standard. Help enrich your classroom with a healthy food culture!
Farming Concrete ToolkitPreK-12thtoolkit, data, storage, harvest, quantity, numbersThe Farming Concrete Toolkit is a way to help measure all of the good things growing in your garden, farm, or window sill. The Toolkit was created by and for urban farmers and gardeners in collaboration with Design Trust for Public Space and Farming Concrete as a way to measure their work.
From Generation to Generation: An Activity Guidebook for the Living Tradition of Seed SavingPreK-12th10elementary school, middle school, high school, seed saving, culture, activityFedco offers From Generation to Generation, a seed education program with grade-by-grade activities to bring young gardeners through the full cycle from seed to seed. By growing gardens and saving seeds, young people can reconnect to past generations of farmers and gardeners, renew food and farming traditions in their own community and work together to plant a sustainable future.
Garden Habitats4th6science, inquiry-based, elementary schoolThis science exploration unit was created by Life Lab ( as part of their Science Curriculum. The unit focuses on plant and animal habitats and garden biodiversity. It is aligned with California State Science Standards and the entire curriculum is available for purchase online. Select grade-specific units are available for download as PDF.
Garden Lesson Plans from the Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical GardensK-8th28elementary school, middle school, art, history, culture, science, language arts A wide variety of lessons revolving around plant and soil nutrition; history, horticulture, and art; and language arts and the garden. Garden vocabulary for primary and secondary children, as well as supporting materials.
Garden Pollinators3rd6science, inquiry-based, elementary school This science exploration unit was created by Life Lab ( as part of their Science Curriculum. The unit focuses on pollinators and their role in the garden ecosystem. It is aligned with California State Science Standards and the entire curriculum is available for purchase online. Select grade-specific units are available for download as PDF.
Gardens for LearningK-12thThis resource offers lesson ideas and "spotlights" but not full lesson planselementary school, middle school, high school, lesson ideas, history, math, ELA, art, healthGardens for Learning is a comprehensive guidebook that provides information about planning and starting a school garden, ideas about how to integrate curriculum in the garden, and lists of "lesson ideas" for a number of subject areas.
George Watts Montessori Edible Garden 1st-3rd15recipes, gardening, math, science, lower elementary school 15 lessons developed for the George Watts Montessori Edible Garden.
George Watts Montessori Edible Garden 4th-5th15science, language arts, recipes, upper elementary school,15 lessons developed for the George Watts Montessori Edible Garden.
Granny's Garden SchoolK-4th 100+elementary school, gardening, science, math, harvesting One of the most complete list of lessons used in a garden-based school program that serves 1,800 students in Loveland OH. More than just lessons, but a complete guide to running a comprehensive garden program! Lessons are organized by grade and by season.
GreenTween6th-8th10middle school, horticulture, nutrition, stewardship, plant identification, Over the course of 10 weeks, students learn how to plan a garden, transplant seedlings, water sustainably, and amend the soil. They also learn to identify different vegetables and herbs, and utilize these plants in healthy recipes from herbal teas to organic salad dressings. Connections to practical math, history, literacy and observed art create a dynamic gardening learning experience that makes the sciences more meaningful.
Grow It, Try It, Like It! Preschool Fun with Fruits and VegetablesPre-Kindergarten 50preschool, early childhood, tasting, nutritionGrow It, Try It, Like It! Preschool Fun with Fruits and Vegetables is a garden-themed nutrition education kit for child care center staff that introduces children to three fruits (peaches, strawberries, and cantaloupe) and three vegetables (spinach, sweet potatoes, and crookneck squash).
Growing Young Leaders in East New York9th-12th32activity, youth, internship, intern, garden, evaluationIn building the East New York Farms! Youth Internship Program over the past 16 years, we have borrowed many things from many amazing organizations and people. One hugely important concept for our program has been the idea of both/and (rather than either/or), which we learned from The Food Project, and The Food Project learned from VISIONS, Inc. We used this VISIONS guideline over the years to help remind ourselves that holding onto the value of multiple strategies, approaches, and structures can be far more powerful than feeling forced to choose one or the other. And so this guide incorporates both the extreme detail helpful for running an impactful youth program, and the broader thoughts that drive our work to support the positive development of young people.
Harvesting HealthK-3rd 6elementary school, physical activity, recipe, gardening, tastingThis website provides a copy of the Network for a Healthy California booklet of garden based education. Including garden set-up, nutrition plans connected to seasonal planting, and motivational tips for physical activities with the class. Also includes links to other regional activities, recipes of the month, and physical activity ideas.
Helping Youth Eat Real; created for Food Day by Columbia Teachers College Adaptable for elementary, middle, and high school students5nutrition, advocacy, common coreCreated for Food Day (October 24 every year), these lessons are about eating fresh and healthy food, eliminating processed foods, and advocating for healthy communities. Lessons may be adapted for younger or older students. This curriculum guide aligns with a number of common core standards.
Kids Cook Farm Fresh- Seasonal recipes, activities & farm profiles2nd-7th21recipes, farm profiles, gardening, agriculture, science, Online curriculum available to download whole or in chapters that incorporates lesson plans on gardening and agricultural techniques and principles with recipes and farmer profiles.
Kids Gardening Lesson & Activity IndexPre-K-12thMultipleelementary, middle school, high school, art, ELA, math, nutrition, physical education, science, social studiesSearchable by completion time, subject matter, education standards, garden type, learning themes, setting, and season, this online database provides a wide range of activity ideas and lesson plans that use gardening as a tool for learning.
Lead2Feed6th-12th10service learning, hunger, A team-based, service-learning program that fosters teamwork in an effort to help students learn and develop key leadership skills as they take action to solve real-life hunger issues.
Leaders in Environmental Action for the Future (LEAF) Anthology for Urban Environmental Education9th-12thMultipleurban environmental education, high school, science, health, justice, built environmentThis online resource offers lesson plans to teachers of high school urban environmental education in three different areas: Natural Cities (urban ecology, natural systems), Human Cities (communities, health, politics, justice, population, culture), and Evolving Cities (infrastructure, urban history, future of cities, and built environment).
Life Learning Adademy: Organic Opportunities9th-12th21high school, vocational, marketing, math, language artsA 21-lesson unit incorporating construction, vocational skills, marketing, gardening, and english/writing.  Written by Life Learning Academy, the curriculum is used for students in vocational programs in high schools but could be used and adapted for a variety of schools.
New York Botanical Garden Lesson PlansK-8th28elementary school, middle schoolOnline list of lesson plans for various concepts (science, plant parts, ecosystems, weather, living things in the garden, math) organized by age. Lessons have been created to align with the New York City Science Scope and Sequence and New York State Standards.
Nourish: Food + Community6th-8th6food systems, seasonal food, culture, advertising, middle school, spanish, video Created by the Center for Ecoliteracy, this curriculum includes lesson plans to accompany the film "Nourish: Food + Community." The video must be purchased separately from its producers: it is available at Intended for middle school students, it covers the industrial food system, local food system, seasonal food, food and culture, ecosystems, and food advertising. The curriculum ends with a school lunchroom survey and several suggestions for "action projects." Student handouts also available in Spanish.
Nutrition to Grow On4th-6th27nutrition, physical activities, consumerism An innovative curriculum for grades four through six that offers teachers a direct link between the garden and nutrition education. Nine lessons are designed to teach children and their families about nutrition by relating each lesson to a garden activity. The curriculum uses the garden to integrate disciplines, including science, mathematics, language arts, history, environmental studies, nutrition and health, while reinforcing some of the California academic content standards. 191 pages, download by lesson or whole document.
Our Growing Place3rd-5th40elementary school, growing, cooking, science, plantingOGP is an easy to follow tool-kit for instructors with little or no experience in cooking or gardening. Lessons are divided into "Garden" and "Kitchen." Lessons can be read online and also downloaded as PDFs. Each has an accompanying video meant to reinforce the text.
Plants and Textiles from Cornell Garden Based Learning5th-12th5art, craft, science, history, technology, elementary school, middle school, high school This set of five lessons explores how plants are used in a variety of textiles (ropes, mats, nets, dyes, and paper). Instructions for creating these different textiles are integrated with history, science, and technology lessons. Individual lessons could potentially be integrated in History and Social Studies courses for various cultures using these types of textiles.
Schoolyard to Market9th-12th16market, food system, high school, business, humanitiesSchoolyard to Market is a youth development and entrepreneurship program created in January 2011 by Education Outside in partnership with the Center for Urban Education for Sustainable Agriculture (CUESA). This step-by-step curriculum guide directs students on how to develop a planting plan, nurture crops in the school garden, and harvest the crop and take it to market to sell. This 16-week program is intended to be used sequentially but can also be used for independent lessons.
Seed to Salad Lessons from Cornell Garden Based LearningK-6thMultipleelementary school, spanish, gardening, tasting, harvesting, nutrition, artGarden based learning with lessons on garden creation, as well as garden based art projects for elementary aged children. Includes links to research done on garden based education and teacher resources for setting up and starting garden based education. This resource is more of an overview or guide, as opposed to traditional lesson plans. Resources also offered in Spanish.
Soil Stories2nd6science, inquiry-based, elementary school This science exploration unit was created by Life Lab ( as part of their Science Curriculum. Soil stories focuses on soil science. The unit is aligned with California State Science Standards and the entire curriculum is available for purchase online. Select grade-specific units are available for download as PDF.
Teaching Organic Farming and Gardening: Resources for Instructors.
Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems
University of California, Santa Cruz
11th-12th21high school, advanced, gardening skills, agricultureA series of downloadable PDF files from the Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems at UC Santa Cruz. Includes topics like organic farming and gardening skills and practices, soil science, and social and environmental issues in agriculture. Teaching Organic Farming: Resources for Instructors

Teaching Direct Marketing: Resources for Instructors

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Teaching the Food System9th-12th11high school, food systems, public health, environment A three-unit curriculum on food security, public health, equity, and the environment created by the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future. The curriculum is sequenced to trace food from field to plate, but lessons can stand alone or be taught in a different order.
The Botany of Desire5th-12Multiplevideo, chemistry, history, science, art, middle school, high schoolBased on Michael Pollan's book, The Botany of Desire, PBS video clips are available online and are accompanied by lesson plans for grades 5-12. This curriculum touches on physical and life sciences, chemistry, art, and more. Some topics may be appropriate for incorporation into a Drug/Alcohol awareness program. Probably most appropriate for advanced and high school learners.
The Edible Schoolyard Berkeley6th-8thMultiplemiddle school, kitchen, cooking, nutrition, science, English, History, Social Studies, Art, Culinary, Garden, Professional Development, Nutrition Education, LessonsA searchable database of user-generated lessons and best practices for edible education programming and professional development at the Edible Schoolyard Berkeley.
The Food Project9th-12thMultiplehigh school, food systems, science, gardening, youth empowermentThe Food Project offers four online curricula: its Sustainable Agriculture Curricula to download on its own, and the three other parts of its Summer Youth Program curriculum online in its "manuals" section.
USDA's Agriculture in the Classroom Lesson Library Pre K- 12th100+elementary school, middle school, high school, agricultureAn extensive searchable online library of ag literacy related lessons. Great search function to find specific types of lessons for all grade levels.
USDA's The People's Garden
Garden-Based Curriculum Database
PreK-12th100+preschool, elementary school, middle school, high school, faith-based, history and culture, language arts, math, nutrition, physical education, science This database has Garden-Based Curriculum for all grade levels (PreK-12) and a variety of subject areas.
Vermont FEED's Food, Farm, & Nutrition Curriculum UnitsK-12th48elementary school, middle school, high school, history, nutrition, local food, service learning Vermont FEED works with schools to raise awareness about healthy food, good nutrition and the role of farms and farmers. Seven food, farm, and nutrition based units for elementary through high school levels. All lessons developed to meet Vermont educational standards.
WE Garden1st-6th11science, reading, writing, nutrition, tasting, food systems, elementary school, agricultureA web-based resource with the mission to increase awareness and understanding of agriculture among California's educators and students. Includes lesson plans for grades K-12, as well as teacher resources, newsletters, student-teacher programs in California, and many other California based agriculture education resources. Lesson plans and additional curricula including, "What's Growin' On?" are available to download in full as