Joseph Cornell

"Joseph Cornell is one of the most highly regarded nature educators in the world today."

— Backpacker magazine

Joseph Cornell's first book, Sharing Nature with Children, sold 500,000 copies in over 20 languages, sparking a worldwide revolution in nature education and becoming an instant classic. Joseph's books now serve as popular nature-education resources all over the globe.

Joseph's next book, Sharing Nature with Children II, is a treasury of nature games and activities for adults and children. In it, he introduced Flow Learning™, a powerful process that brings its participants naturally and deeply into inspiring experiences of nature. The companion video, "Sharing Nature with Children," beautifully demonstrates the Flow Learning technique. (The book and video earned prestigious awards from the National Association for Interpretation.)

In the next title in the Sharing Nature® series, Listening to Nature, Joseph guides adolescents and adults toward a deeper connection and relationship with the natural world. Thousands of readers have been touched by its beauty and depth.

Joseph Cornell's book Journey to the Heart of Nature was commissioned by the World Scouts in Geneva, Switzerland as a guide for young adults, to help them discover the natural love of the Earth that hides in every human heart. Journey is now a beloved teaching tool in Earth stewardship programs worldwide.

Joseph's most recent books, With Beauty Before Me and John Muir: My Life with Nature, take up two themes that have long been close to Joseph's heart: solo nature walking and the inspiring life of naturalist John Muir. With Beauty Before Me is an inspirational guide for nature walks, richly filled with quotations and reflective activities that encourage us to enjoy a close and loving interaction with the natural world.

John Muir: My Life with Nature is a unique narrative "autobiography" of John Muir, told in his own words and overflowing with his wild adventuresomeness and soaring spirit. The included "Explore More" activities encourage young people to reflect on the personal qualities that made Muir such a joyous and magnetic individual and an effective advocate for the Earth.

Joseph started the Sharing Nature Foundation in 1978 to help spread his work throughout the world. He offers workshops and keynote presentations at many far-flung venues, as well as an annual week-long training course in Northern California, the "Sharing Nature Training and Retreat.”

Joseph is the Honorary President of the Japan Nature Games Association, a group of more than 11,000 Japanese educators who lead and teach Sharing Nature activities and philosophy in Southeast Asia. Joseph has traveled widely to work with similar groups in other lands, including Germany, Brazil, Taiwan, Slovenia, and Great Britain. So far, he has visited twenty-three countries and forty-six states to share his ideas and methods. In 1997, Sharing Nature Worldwide was established to bring kindred individuals and organizations together from all over the world. Active Sharing Nature groups are now spreading Joseph's work in over fifteen countries.


In 1982, Joseph Cornell was nominated for The Right Livelihood Award, an international peace prize from Sweden. He received the prestigious Honorary Award from the National Association of interpretation, "For his vast contribution to the field of natural science education...." The Hungarian Society for Environmental Education awarded him with an Honorary Membership for his "professional excellence and service as a role model for educators worldwide." He was a winner of the ASPCA Henry Bergh Children's Book Award in 2000. And in 2001, he received an honorary doctoral degree from Unity College in Maine, "For his illustrious career as a nature educator and writer."


Joseph Cornell earned his B.S. degree in Nature Awareness from California State University, Chico in 1973, and an M.S. degree in Nature Awareness from the University of the Trees in Boulder Creek, California in 1979.

Professional Experience

Joseph has served as a classroom teacher, school district outdoor educator, and High Sierras camp naturalist for the Boy Scouts of America. For many years, Joseph taught at the Boy Scouts' Western Region National Camp School, where Scout Leaders are certified.

A Personal Note

Joseph and his wife, Anandi, are ordained ministers and long-time residents of Ananda Village, an intentional community located in the beautiful foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains in northern California. The Ananda community is dedicated to "simple living and high thinking" and is one of the most successful intentional communities in the world. A fifth-generation Californian, Joseph was born in 1950, in the small town of Live Oak

Joseph Cornell
Sharing Nature with Children
Sharing Nature with Children II
Listening to nature
John Muir: My Life with Nature