Thesis Title

Factors That Explain Third and Fourth Grade Teachers' Decision to Teach Environmental Education in a Northern California District

Graduation Date

Spring 2002

Document Type

Master's Thesis

Document Form


Degree Name

Master of Science

Program Name


Program Director

Madalienne F. Peters, EdD


This study gives voice to 12 third and fourth grade teachers in a Northern California school district concerning the factors they believe contribute to their decisions to teach environmental education. Personal value for environmental education is the most dominant theme across the sample of interviewees. These teachers possess substantial knowledge about environmental topics, and generally perceive support for environmental education from administrators and students’ families. Some feel collegial support exists on grade level teams only, while others believe environmental education permeates school culture. Finally, these teachers express concern about environmental education’s fate due to factors such as teachers’ stress, time constraints, complacency, and emphasis on math and language arts test scores.

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