To apply please download and fill out the proposal. Please submit the proposal as a word document (.doc) using the application form at the bottom of the page. 


Now Accepting Applications for Fall 2018!

Teachers in our program develop and implement projects that focus on the Petaluma River and/or the Watershed. A $500 stipend is provided to fund the additional time needed to lesson plan for the implementation of the project. The first year in the Watershed Classroom program, we provide as much support and mentoring as is necessary to build a successful curriculum. We offer free field trips to the Steamer Landing and the David Yearsley River Heritage Center; provide water testing kits for class use; and purchase any additional materials needed.

The second year we continue to support our teachers, and provide a $250 stipend with the understanding that the outside planning time will be considerably less than the first year.

With the curriculum strongly developed and implemented, third year teachers will receive a $250 stipend as they work to fully integrate their project into the curriculum.

After participating in the program for three years, teachers are encouraged to mentor teachers new to the Watershed Classroom. Teachers that have participated in our program represent nearly every school in Petaluma, across all grades from kindergarten through high school. Their experience in how to best incorporate projects into the classroom and meet Science, English Language, Social Studies and History standards, is extremely beneficial. The collaboration between seasoned Watershed Classroom teachers and those just starting their projects, facilitates a smooth development and integration of new curriculum.

Project Requirements are...

  1. Focuses on an essential question: This is a single driving question at the core of the project which students will work to answer over the course of the unit
  2. Lists key learning objectives: These are concrete objectives for knowledge, understanding, and performance which relate back to the essential question. 
  3. Includes at least three outdoor fieldwork activities
  4. Supports state standards: CA Common Core, CA History and Social Science Content Standards, Next Generation Science Standards, and/or CA Blueprint for Environmental Literacy
  5. Produces a public product: Students have a way to share their work with the community.
  6. Has a clear connection to the Petaluma Watershed
  7. Begins with an orientation: Friends of the Petaluma River can visit you in class or host you at the David Yearsley River Heritage center to welcome students to the Watershed Classroom. You may also choose to facilitate your own in-class orientation. Click here for orientation requirements.


Expectations of educators whose projects are accepted:

  1. Attempt to the best of their ability to complete the curriculum outlined in their proposal.
  2. Complete a brief once monthly check-in form for the duration of their project.
  3. Administer pre- and post- assessments provided by the Watershed Classroom program in order to gauge student learning and comprehension of watershed concepts. 
  4. Forward photos and classroom materials from their projects to our Watershed Classroom coordinator.
  5. Send student representatives to our annual Watershed Classroom Student Showcase. 
  6. Fill out a survey upon completion of their project regarding their experience in the program.

By completing the above, participants help us to show our funders and partners all of the amazing work Watershed Classroom teachers are doing. In doing so, they help us to keep this program running so we can continue to support exceptional educators!

Additional Resources


Use the form below to apply to the Watershed Classroom and submit your proposal. Once we receive your application, a panel of community members and FOPR staff will review your proposal. Expect to hear back from us with feedback and questions by late July.

We suggest that returning projects work from their most recent year's proposal. To request a copy of a previous proposal, please email

You should receive an automatic email response once you submit this application. If you do not receive a response within 24 hours, please email