British Columbia’s outdoor spaces offer countless opportunities for people of all ages to learn and grow. There is so much for everyone to discover about B.C.’s rich biodiversity, Indigenous traditions, and awe-inspiring beauty.
Just as we can learn from B.C.’s natural and cultural heritage, we all have a responsibility to protect that heritage. This page provides resources to help you, your family, or your students learn from nature, respectfully and responsibly.
Look here to:
- Discover the cultural heritage of what is now called British Columbia
- Learn about responsible recreation
- Get a backcountry education
- Find fun activities for kids
- Discover teachers’ resources
If you have any questions about BC Parks’ educational resources or activities, please email BCParks.Education@gov.bc.ca.
Education for everybody
Having fun, staying safe, and behaving appropriately in the outdoors does not come naturally to all of us. And even the most experienced outdoorsperson can face surprises when venturing into the backcountry.
At BC Parks, it’s our job to help you responsibly enjoy British Columbia’s outdoor spaces. The resources outlined in this section are great places to start if you’re new to outdoor adventures or planning to expand your horizons.
Respect and reconciliation
British Columbia’s parks include many important places for Indigenous Peoples. BC Parks is working toward meaningful collaboration with Indigenous communities, informed by respect for their ongoing connections to the land.
There are 35 distinct Indigenous culture and language groups and over 200 First Nations in British Columbia. Click these links to learn more about Indigenous cultures and practices, as well as appropriate terminology and pronunciations:
For detailed information on how we are collaborating with First Nations, visit the Indigenous relations and reconciliation page.
At BC Parks, we are committed to preserving B.C.’s outdoor spaces, so that everyone can enjoy them for years to come. Our job is to make sure everyone can safely experience nature in ways that minimize any environmental impact.
Want to learn how you can help us? The visit responsibly section of this website has lots of resources for safe and respectful outdoor adventures. Click these links to learn how you can help us keep BC Parks safe, clean, and peaceful:
For information on staying safe and behaving responsibly during backcountry adventures, see backcountry education, below.
Adventures in British Columbia’s backcountry areas require extra care. ‘Backcountry’ means an area more than 1 km away from any highway or park road. The backcountry is not accessible by vehicle and has limited facilities.
Venturing into a more remote area inevitably comes with risks. These areas are also especially sensitive, both ecologically and culturally. Click these links to get advice for your more adventurous excursions:
To get more resources that will help you stay safe in the backcountry, we recommend visiting the AdventureSmart website.
Activities for kids
Treated with respect, British Columbia’s outdoors can be both a classroom and a playground. This province’s parks system offers countless inspiringly educational experiences for children and the whole family.
Nature-based play contributes to educational development, personal growth, and overall happiness in children. With this in mind, we have created a selection of resources to help you and your kids experience the benefits of nature.
Join Jerry the Moose and learn how have fun in the great outdoors, the right way. This interpretive program entertains and educates kids aged five to 12. Jerry’s Rangers focuses on:
Find out why protecting the environment matters and how you can help keep parks clean and green.
- Indigenous culture
Learn about Indigenous Peoples in what is now known as British Columbia. See how you can honour their long history when visiting their traditional lands.
- Responsible recreation
Understand how to behave properly when visiting a park, showing respect for nature and other visitors.
- Outdoor safety
Discover the smartest ways to keep yourself and your family safe when having fun in the outdoors.
Jerry’s Rangers is offered in the summer by participating park operators and Discover Parks Ambassadors.
Our self-guided booklets are designed to help kids get the most from any visit to a park. Full of fun and educational activities, these booklets can turn a daytrip into a voyage of discovery. To download booklets, simply click the titles below:
- Jerry’s nature quest (ages 3-12)
Head off on an adventure with Jerry the Moose. Play games and solve puzzles, then submit your completed booklet to win a prize.
- Sensing the world around us (ages 3-5)
Take a bumblebee’s-eye view of the park and get a sense of what it’s like to be out in the natural world.
- Connecting with place (ages 6-8)
Find out what a culturally modified tree is, discover signs of animal activity, and see why it’s important to keep parks naturally diverse.
- Weaving into the web of life (ages 9-11)
Explore the web of life, learn about responsible recreation, and get to know the bears of B.C.
- Stepping into stewardship (ages 12+)
Explore the threat of invasive species, make a move on climate change, and listen for the stories of salmon.
If you are a parent or teacher who would like print copies of these booklets for your kids, just write to BCParks.Education@gov.bc.ca.
Click the links below to download printable colouring activities for kids, starring Jerry the Moose:
Resources for teachers
The parks of B.C. offer your students countless exciting educational experiences. BC Parks is committed to fostering the next generation of stewards and ensuring the future of our province’s outdoor spaces. To help us honour this commitment, we are getting more students into parks and bringing parks into schools.
As part of our educational activities, we have partnered with the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation (HCTF) and FireSmart BC. Through these partnerships, we have created a range of resources for teachers. Look below to see some resources currently on offer as part of this program.
Want to take your class on an educational excursion to one of B.C.’s amazing parks? You can apply for an HCTF GO Grant of $600 per class or $3,500 per school to fund a field trip.
Need help designing an educational field trip for your students? Then take a free HCTF workshop in a park near you. Learn how to get the most from outdoor spaces and connect these experiences to the curriculum.
Environmental Exchange Box Program
Not able to bring your class to a park? Then bring a park to your classroom with the HCTF Environmental Exchange Box Program [PDF]. The exchange box is a physical box that your class curates and shares with another class in B.C.
The Environmental Exchange Box Program is a great opportunity for students to learn about their local environment. It fosters collaboration and teaches kids about the importance of protecting our province’s biodiversity.
Field trip guides
Want to supercharge your next field trip or visit to a BC Park? These HCTF booklets will take your students’ experience to the next level and help you link it to curriculum objectives.
- Field trip checklist
- Field trip safety considerations
- Let’s go to the forest
- Let’s go to the grasslands
- Let’s go to the ocean
- Let’s go to the pond
FireSmart education materials
FireSmart BC has developed new resources that give educators and K-12 students essential knowledge about fire resiliency. Visit the FireSmart BC website to access an all-in-one program that teaches key FireSmart concepts.