Educational Resources from the National Park Service

It's Jen from An Adventure in Literacy. I've spent the last three summers traveling coast to coast on cross country trips. One of the highlights of these trips is the opportunity to hit all of the national parks. Most people know about the amazing beauty and natural resources that national parks offer, but I'm here today to share some of the educational resources too.

The majority of national parks have bookstores in their visitor centers. In addition to park resources, most of them have an AMAZING selection of children's books. There are nonfiction books to learn more about the features and characteristics of the park. There are also fiction books related to the parks. I'm talking about quality children's literature.

Carlsbad Caverns even had a book display by the elevators highlighting a few books!

Some visitor centers will give you 15% off with a teacher id on some items. As with all teacher discounts it depends on the park and can change at any time, but it never hurts to flash that teacher id and just ask!

If you have children of your own they can take advantage of the free Junior Ranger program. The program is individualized for each park, but it usually requires some sort of learning activities specific to the park and a junior ranger patch. You can read more about the program here.

If you're not near the visitor center resources, the National Park Service also offers some great web based resources. There is a kids page as well as a teacher page where you can search for lessons and resources. You can also visit the websites for individual national parks for educational resources. Just click on "Learn About the Park" then "Education".

National Parks are America's largest classrooms. Be sure to take advantage of all of the educational resources they have to offer. Do you have a favorite park or park resource that you use for education? Leave us a comment. We'd love to check it out!


  1. Great post! My family loves visiting the parks and getting our "Passports" stamped. Have received some great resources at some parks. LOVE Biscayne National Park! Enjoy your travels. :)

    1. I LOVE getting the passport stamps! I feel like a little kid- always excited to add to my collection. We haven't hit Biscayne yet, but it looks beautiful.

  2. We have enjoyed doing the Junior Ranger stamps with our daughter, and I agree...great children's books in the visitor's centers. My husband is green with envy at the thought of traveling coast to coast. Maybe we'll do it one day. Glad you enjoyed your travels.