Winter Ecology Program

Exploring Nature in the Classroom


Christodora’s Winter Ecology Program (WEP) brings environmental education to over 2,000 New York City middle school students each year. Our educators, many of whom have worked in our wilderness program, are specially trained to inspire curiosity and make concepts of ecology relevant and exciting.
  • “You guys made me really happy to come to school on Thursdays.”

  • “It’s really comforting to me to know organizations like Christodora give students the opportunity to step out of the classroom and into the natural world, where they can experience learning in a very hands-on way and find out what’s exciting to them.”


wecAfter 7 weeks of inquiry-based science exploration, students take home a better understanding of human impact on the environment, a clearer picture of where their drinking water comes from, an understanding of conservation, and the impact of urban sprawl on the environment and animals. They develop a different attitude toward science and are more motivated to ask questions and observe things they never noticed before.

WEP lessons support the New York State Core Curriculum and Standards for Science Education; NYC Scope and Sequence requirements; and Next Generation Science Standards. We take pride in supporting the motivated teachers, principals and other administrators who want to do all they can to enhance educational opportunities for their students.

By facilitating meaningful lessons directly related to students and their local environment, the educational experience is connected to real life and encourages an enthusiasm and passion for nature, exploration and conservation. Many WEP alumni choose to participate in field trips and after-school activities with New Youth Conservationists, and/or continue their studies in summer sessions at Manice Education Center.

Not your average science lesson:

Dissect owl pellets and identify what that owl ate for dinner.

Examine how animal skull formations show us if an animal is predator or prey.

Learn how to search for answers…

And how to ask the right questions.


Our students appreciate the grant provided by ConEdison in support of our Winter Ecology Program