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About

Vision and Framework

E-STEM Vision and FrameworkVision:

Hazel Wolf is an environmental school empowering creative and critical thinkers who nurture themselves, their community, and their environment.

The Hazel Wolf K-8 E-STEM Storyline is a way for our school to keep environmental topics at the forefront of our students’ experience. It’s a series of environmentally-focused questions, organized by grade level. The questions inform cross-subject
integration of key environmental themes throughout the school year.

Our teachers have had release time to create the E-STEM storyline and to plan for implementing it as this school year develops. Teacher release time, training, and classroom materials have been generously paid for by the community out of a
‘raise-the-paddle’ event at last year’s school auction.

We are just in the beginning stages of rolling out the E-STEM Storyline. Over the next few years, we intend to strengthen the program with planning days, professional development, and modifications based on reflection and feedback. Hazel Wolf
students will be the beneficiaries of a long-term, vertically aligned, multi-faceted environmental educational philosophy.

Storyline Overview


Kindergarten storyline: How can I be a naturalist?
Key points: 5 senses, stillness, reflection, observation
Key activities: Sit Spot, field trips to farms

1st grade storyline: How does our food get from a farm to our table?
Key points: plants and plant parts, seasons, nutrition, scientific observation
Key activities: gardening at the P-Patch, garden education in the classroom, plant sale

2nd grade storyline: Where does our stuff go after we’re done using it?
Key points: natural resources, manufacturing, garbage, recycling, upcycling, reuse
Key activities: reusing and upcycling waste in MakerSpace, model making, recycling center field trip nonfiction writing

3rd grade storyline: How do animals, including humans, interact with the environment?
Key points: life cycles, ecosystems, first-hand observation,
Key activities: Finding Urban Nature, field trips

4th grade storyline: What do Salmon need to survive and why?
Key points: environmental threats, conservation, stewardship, native plants
Key activities: Salmon in Schools, field trip to Tillicum Village, salmon release

5th grade storyline: Why are some formerly natural areas restored and others are not? Who are the stakeholders that drive
the decision?
Key points: energy, ecosystems, generation and transmission of electricity, social justice
Key activities: Green team around school, monitor solar panels, field trips to Wind Farm, NatureBridge

6th grade storyline: How can we help people understand, protect, or improve our hydrosphere?
Key points: watersheds, pollution, urbanization, advocacy, scientific investigations
Key activities: Intro to Environmental Science class, Mount Rainier Institute

Note: The 7th and 8th grade storylines are still in development. Middle school course structure leads to unique challenges when trying to integrate themes across subjects, with different teachers.

7th grade storyline: How are the interactions between resources and organisms connected to human populations and social justice?

8th grade storyline: How can I be a naturalist?