Although Lucy Coleman grew up camping a lot, it wasn't until after college that she discovered a lifelong passion for helping others appreciate and understand the natural world. For a few years, she spent summers as an interpretive park ranger in Glacier National Park and the school years teaching environmental science at outdoor schools in California. From there, it was a natural transition to settle into a very rewarding teaching career at Natomas Charter School's Performing and Fine Arts Academy, where she's taught life and physical science to 7th and 8th graders since 2001. She enjoys developing interdisciplinary curriculum that connects science with technology, language arts, math and art. Ms. Coleman is especially passionate about climate education and finding innovative solutions to environmental problems. Every day, she appreciates her students' love of learning and discovering new things.

When not teaching, Ms. Coleman makes fast tracks for the wild and roadless places of our planet. Although she and her husband love having overseas adventures, she thinks there's no finer place than the Sierra Nevada in the summertime! In addition to backpacking, her favorite pastimes include trail running, sea kayaking, cross-country skiing, gardening and reading.

Natomas Charter School

Sacramento, CA
United States

Why I Applied

My career is built on igniting students’ passion and appreciation for the magnificence of our natural world. I began this journey as an interpretive park ranger in Glacier National Park where I designed interactive experiences to transform sightseers into explorers. As an outdoor educator at 6th grade science camps in California, I led students on their first hikes and introduced them to their first game of "camouflage." Now, as a seasoned middle-school science educator, PolarTREC represents a substantial opportunity for enriching and deepening my professional learning about scientific research, allowing me to contribute to a research team, learn the cutting-edge techniques and tools of scientists, and give all that back to my learners, colleagues and community.