Live It, Learn It was born out of its founder's experience as a teacher in one of DC’s lowest-performing schools where students were undermined by inadequate exposure to the world around them, limited connection to academic material, and little sense of why education mattered. The idea was to supplement classroom instruction with vital experiential learning. Today, LILI inspires academic achievement and ignites student potential through first-hand exposure to DC’s historical, cultural, and natural resources. Youngsters examine plant adaptations at the US Botanic Garden, recite a Frederick Douglass speech from the steps of his former home in Anacostia, and work with an artist at the Kreeger Museum to create Monet-inspired landscapes. The result: students are more confident, more motivated, and more successful in the classroom. Professional development for teachers ensures that they, and their students, learn how to get the most from the pre-trip classroom sessions, hands-on academic trips, and post-trip lessons. LILI makes history, science, and culture come alive for over 1,600 children – and generates a priceless love of learning.

Headquarters: DC-Ward 6

Where They Operate: DC-Ward 1; DC-Ward 4; DC-Ward 5; DC-Ward 6; DC-Ward 7; DC-Ward 8

Age Groups Served: Youth (5-11)

Ethnic Groups Served: African American; Latino/Hispanic

Population(s) Served: Low- to Moderate-Income

Schools They Work In: Aiton ES; Barnard ES; Cooke (H.D.) ES; Drew ES; Garfield ES; Hendley ES; Malcolm X ES; Miner ES; Orr ES; Payne ES; Raymond EC; Savoy ES; Smothers ES; Thomas ES; Tubman ES; Turner ES; Whittier EC; Wilson (J.O.) ES

Awards & Recognition

2011 CharityWorks Partner
2011 Lehrman Impact Award
2010-2011 Catalogue for Philanthropy Charity
2007 Recipient of Catalogue for Philanthropy Award
2006-2007 Catalogue for Philanthropy Charity

Press

  • Experience is the Best Teacher
    Mon Mar 4 2013, Hill Rag  
    Since its inaugural pontoon trip down the Anacostia River with 23 students, the organization has expanded to encompass thirty different

  • 5th Graders Plan For Inauguration
    Thu Dec 6 2012, WUSA 9  
    Planning for next month's presidential inauguration is in high gear. But on Thursday a group of 5th graders took over the planning for the

  • Profile: Matthew Wheelock, founder of Live It Learn It
    Mon Oct 1 2012, The Washington Post  
    Wheelock's answer was to use the city as a classroom, anchoring lessons in the cultural and historic institutions that draw millions

  • A Classroom Of Visiting Scholars
    Mon Dec 8 2008, Readers Digest  
    Please alert the media: Something that makes sense is happening in Washington, D.C. Public school kids surrounded by museums and monuments

  • Learning by Going
    Thu Feb 21 2008  
    The Washington Post shadowed Live It Learn It during a pre-trip lesson and the subsequent trip to the Frederick Douglass National Historic Site for students from Turner Elementary School. The Post's article includes brief interviews with several Turner students and their classroom teacher, and gives a good sense of Live It Learn It's methodology and academic impact.

Budget (FY2013)

  • $3 million or higher
  • $1 million to $3 million
  • The current budget for Live It Learn It is: $500k to $1 million
  • Less than $500k

Catalogue charities range in size from $100,000 to $3 million. This graphic indicates the budget range of the organization featured here. If you see an organizational budget above the $3 million mark, that is because the featured charity has grown in size since it first appeared in the Catalogue. We proudly present on our website the work of these "growth" charities.

About the Catalogue for Philanthropy

Each year 120 expert reviewers evaluate applicants for distinction, merit, and impact. Each featured charity has been successfully site visited and its financials given the thumbs up. The Catalogue for Philanthropy charges no fees and raises funds separately to support its work. Since 2003, it has raised over $34 million for charities across the Greater Washington region.

The Catalogue for Philanthropy looks to friends like you to keep our services independent and entirely free of charge. Consider a small contribution to the Catalogue to cap off your gift and help the causes you care about get the full support they deserve!

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