ONREP Mission

Preparing educators to engage students in relevant, meaningful, and inspiring classroom and outdoor learning experiences that contribute to student academic achievement

Connections to content standards

ONREP incorporates strategies for addressing Oregon and national content standards through natural resource topics.


ONREP partners with programs and curricula, such as PLT and Project WILD, that teach science based ecological concepts through leading edge educational practices.

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Impact Teachers... Impact the Future

The Oregon Natural Resources Education Program (ONREP) has been a leader in providing professional development programs for K - 16 educators since its inception in the mid-1980s. ONREP programming has contributed to building thousands of educators’ understanding of Oregon’s forest, wildlife, and ecosystems. Oregon’s rich and diverse natural resources are integral to our citizen’s social interactions, health and well-being, and the foundation of Oregon’s economy.   

Each year 800 to 1,000 classroom, pre-service, and non-formal educators participate in workshops that provide curriculum, strategies, information, and resources that will help them engage students in relevant, meaningful, and place-based learning.  Through hands-on, interactive, and investigative strategies that foster how to think, not what to think, teachers learn how to meet state and national learning standards while engaging students in nature-based learning that promotes the development of the critical thinkers and creative problem solvers who are prepared for life and work in the 21st Century.

Our work is supported through partnerships with organizations who value Oregon’s vital natural resource heritage, and who want to ensure it for future generations.

Why natural resources? | How do we do this?


2016-17 Workshops

Workshops are added to the workshop calendar throughout the year, check the list often!

Small-scale Science

A few years ago, Matt Betts, a researcher in forest ecology at Oregon State University, spearheaded a project with the Oregon Natural Resources Education program in OSU Extension to bring hummingbird science and fieldwork to classrooms. The project got even richer when he and OSU science educator Kari O’Connell looped in students and teachers from a satellite study site in Costa Rica.

Corvallis, Albany teachers link Costa Rica with Oregon schools

“This project has all the elements of a real-world learning experience,” said Kari O’Connell, an educator with Oregon State’s Oregon Natural Resources Education Program. “The students will be doing math, science and art and practicing their language skills. It also involves their families. One of the teachers has already translated information into Spanish so that Spanish-speaking families in Oregon can be involved.”