Youth and Family-Centered Conservation Action

Today’s young people are tomorrow’s environmental leaders.

See yourself in nature

We offer a variety of opportunities for Chicago’s youth and families. The Field’s Youth and Family-Centered Conservation programs, events, and resources help young people from 3rd grade through high school (and beyond!) make an impact where they live and to explore future career paths in the environmental sciences.

More than ever, as kids spend more time indoors, they need to connect to nature—for their health and for the planet. Our Youth and Family-Centered Conservation team supports a diverse group of future conservation leaders with hands-on, standards-aligned, local environmental engagement opportunities. We’re working to inspire and teach the next generation of conservation leaders.

When I think about my experiences in Field Museum youth programs, the relationships that I formed with my colleagues changed my life for the better and contributed to my sense of community in Chicago.

Levi Jenkins, past participant

Youth and families from the Chicago Region learn about the outdoors alongside museum ecologists, social scientists, and educators. You’ll meet others from across the city, all while learning about local nature. Together, we’re translating science into action.

Environmental education programs

The Field’s Keller Science Action Center offers Youth Conservation Action programs for students from elementary through high school. All focus on learning about natural environments close to home.

Have questions or ready to get involved? Email us at

Mighty Acorns

Kids in grades 3 through 5 connect with their local ecosystems through Mighty Acorns. We work with many partners across the Chicago Wilderness region to engage more than 4,000 Mighty Acorns students in meaningful outdoor activities that pair with standards-aligned school curricula.

Chicago Green Ambassadors

Students ages 15 through 19 can participate in the Chicago Green Ambassadors program throughout the year with their high school and/or individually, and apply for the paid summer internship program. Together, the Roots & Routes Initiative and Youth and Family-Centered Conservation team lead Chicago Green Ambassadors in increasing access to green spaces. Participants from the neighborhoods of Chinatown, Bronzeville, Little Village, Pilsen, as well as the Calumet area all work to connect their communities to the south lakefront.

Fellows United for Environment, Growth, and Opportunity (FUEGO)

The Fellows United for Environment, Growth, and Opportunity (FUEGO) program increases the capacity of underrepresented young adults ages 18 to 24 from Chicago to pursue environmental careers, studies, and other pathway opportunities. Fellows are paid a stipend, paired with a mentor, and receive training, support, and opportunities for reflections and immersive outdoor experiences. Together, these activities build career readiness and prepare fellows for successful environmental careers.

More learning opportunities

There are lots of ways to learn and explore with the Field online, at home, and in the museum. Join one of our online events to talk with a scientist, take a closer look at SUE the T. rex in a virtual tour, and find the don’t-miss things to see during a museum visit.

Meet a Museum Insider

Did you know Field Museum staff work in a variety of unique roles? Join us virtually to find our more!

SUE the T. rex Virtual Tour for Classrooms

Learn about this famous fossil’s history, complete with trivia and an interactive 3D model.

Learning Resources

Science comes to life through lesson plans, activities, games, and more.