Educator Curriculum & Training Program

NEW: Flint River Environmental Leaders Program

Watershed Stewardship at Home

Bridges Teacher Resource Bank

“How healthy is our stream for aquatic organisms and how do human actions on land impact the health of the stream?”

Flint River GREEN Bridges: Bridging communities, classrooms, curriculum, and careers in the Flint River Watershed

Join our 6th – 8th grade curriculum and educator coaching program that immerses teachers and students in robust, place-based education in coordination with the core Flint River GREEN water chemistry monitoring education program.

Students doing water chemistry tests

Program Highlights:

  • Ongoing multi-dimensional teacher support
  • A flexible science unit incorporating hands-on, citizen science data collection and analysis alongside local water quality experts and community stakeholders
  • Works toward multiple Next Generation/Michigan Science Standards and many cross-curricular connections focusing on the construction of explanations through claim, evidence, and reasoning using a stream health phenomenon
  • Student-led community action projects centered on water quality stewardship
  • Grounded in NOAA’s Meaningful Watershed Education Experiences
  • This unit emphasizes place-based education which is a project-based learning model that immerses students in the stewardship of their own communities. We are guided in this endeavor by Discovering PLACE

Past and Current Student-led Action Projects:


This project supports training and materials for schools within the Flint River Watershed that work to immerse a group of 6th – 8th grade students (options for high school expansion) in a hands-on, placed-based, citizen science watershed curriculum which includes the following:


  • Complete year-round training opportunities focused on watershed literacy, youth voice, content area cross-collaboration, and core unit curriculum pieces (All new Bridges teachers must also complete the 3-5 hour virtual Flint River GREEN Program Training if they have not already done so).
  • Commit to working with a community partner to complete a student-driven action project.
  • Provide water quality data, ongoing feedback, and student artifacts to program organizers.


  • Engage in at least two outdoor field study experiences, with one being water chemistry testing at a local stream.
  • Explore green STEM careers by communicating with local experts throughout implementation of the unit.
  • Present data and project components at annual Student Summit held in late May.
  • Plan and implement a community action project resulting from the analysis of water chemistry data. $500 mini-grants available!


Educator training for the core Flint River GREEN youth stream monitoring program is an additional required commitment and a precursor to the program. If you are a new teacher to GREEN, register for the virtual Flint River GREEN training program in addition to applying for Bridges.

Participants are encouraged to enroll in teams of 2-3 teachers from the same school; cross-content area and cross-grade collaboration is welcome. Teams and new participants will receive priority registration. Space is limited and will be filled on a first come, first served basis.

Please express interest in next year’s cohort by emailing the Program Manager directly. Contact information below.


  • Stipends awarded for benchmarks of training completion.
  • $500 mini-grants for schools implementing a student-led community impact project. Funding could be used towards project materials, bussing, or subs with opportunity to leverage for additional funds as needed.  
  • A packaged, yet flexible unit of study plus loaned classroom materials fully supporting NGSS CCCs, DCIs, SEPs and the Michigan Science Standards as well as additional support in Math, ELA, CRE, and the C3 Framework for Social Studies.
  • Access to local, regional, and national career professionals and education resources.

For additional information or questions, please contact Kelly Sanborn, Education Programs Manager at or (810)-767-9491

Bridges Program Framework Gallery:

Teacher Training Photos

2020 Press Release – Second Year Funded!