World Wide Waldens Privacy Policy

Effective Date: July 21, 2009



World Wide Waldens,, is operated by The Walden Woods Project. We care deeply about your privacy and the quality of your experience using this educational resource. This notice describes how we collect and use personal information you provide on the World Wide Waldens website (the "Site").


If you have questions or concerns regarding our privacy policy, please contact us at 781-259-4700 or write to us at:


The Walden Woods Project

44 Baker Farm Rd.

Lincoln, MA 01773-3004


If you have technical difficulty using the World Wide Waldens website, please contact


Information We Collect and How We Use It

Visitors may browse the Site without providing any personal information. In order to participate in the World Wide Waldens program and access the full range of Site features, teachers, club advisors, or other adult project sponsors must register for an account. Students do not register directly. Their teacher/adult sponsor creates the project account students need to build a Project Showcase page and provides login information to students. 


If you choose to provide us with personal information by sending us an e-mail or by filling out a form and submitting it through our Web site to register for the program, an event or contest, or to join our mailing list, we only use that information to complete to your request or respond to your inquiry.


In order to provide visitors and registered users with a safe, efficient, and customized experience, we may collect the following types of information:


Teacher Registration/Profile Information: When teachers, club advisors and other adult sponsors register for a program account, we require you to create a login and provide your email address, first and last name, school or organization name, job title, mailing address, and city. Phone number is an optional field. We collect this information so that we can create a unique account for you and properly identify your group's projects in the Project Showcase. We may also use this information to contact you about important deadlines, project awards, or other program-related activities or issues. You also have the option to provide additional demographic information (experience teaching Thoreau or completing environmental projects) to us. We encourage you to submit this information so we can better support you as you participate in the World Wide Waldens program.


Student Project Accounts: Once registered, a teacher, club advisor or other adult sponsor can create Student Project Accounts for student groups. This login gives each student group access to features that allow them to create a web page (a Project Showcase page) about their environmental stewardship project. This account is not an individual, personal student login. We do not require you to provide student names, email addresses or any other personal information about students. You will simply be asked to provide a project title, project start and end dates, student/group name (an alias), login password, and grade level. We collect this information in order to manage student project Showcase pages.


The Project Showcase feature allows students to post text, images, and uploaded files about their project using a defined template. We do not collect personally identifiable information on this page. Teacher/sponsors must review and approve all project pages before submitting them to Walden staff for final approval and publication in the Site's publicly viewable Project Showcase. When posting or approving Project Showcase pages, teachers and students must follow their school or organization's Acceptable Use Policy and our World Wide Waldens Terms of Use.


Email a Friend: This feature available throughout the site allows you to find and recommend a page of the site to someone, e.g., a Project Showcase page, reading, or activity. If you use this feature, you are required to provide your friend's name, your name, your friend's email address, and your email address.  We only use this information to automatically generate and send your friend a one-time email inviting him or her to view the recommended page.


Walden Summit/Webinars: We occasionally host conferences, events or webinars that allow teachers and students to learn about environmental projects elsewhere, Thoreau, the World Wide Walden program, or other topics of interest to our users. When a teacher registers his or her group to participate in an event, we collect the teacher's name, email address, organization, and other contact information. We use this information to send instructions for participating in the event or webinar. We may also collect the name(s) of students the teacher has selected to participate in the event.


Essay Contest: Students, or a teacher submitting on their behalf, may choose to participate in our annual essay contest. The essay submission form requires student name, grade, age, gender and class/course. Only students ages 13 or older may participate. In each case, the student's teacher will serve as our point of contact - teacher name, organization, address, phone, and email information is collected for this purpose.


Log Information: Like most web sites, we gather certain information automatically and store it in log files. These server logs may include information such as your IP address, browser type, operating system, internet service provider (ISP), date and time stamp, referring/exiting pages, and clickstream data. We also use a third-party tracking service that uses log files and cookies to track non-personally identifiable information about Site visitors in the aggregate. We use this information to monitor Site traffic, analyze trends, administer the Site, track user movements around the site and gather demographic information about our user base. This information does not identify individual users and is not linked to personally identifiable information collected as part of the account registration process.


Cookies: When you visit the Site, we send one or more "cookies" - a small text file containing a string of characters sent to your computer that uniquely identifies your browser and transmits information about your activities on the site. By default, most browsers are set to accept cookies; however, you may change your browser settings to refuse all cookies or indicate when a cookie is being sent. Note that some World Wide Walden features may not function properly if cookies are disabled. We do not link the information we store in cookies to any personally identifiable information you submit while on our site.


Clear Gifs: We may use clear gifs (also called web beacons or web bugs) to help us manage Site content by tracking what content is effective. Clear gifs are tiny graphics, with a unique identifier, embedded invisibly on Web pages, which are used to track the online movement of Site users. We may also use clear gifs in our HTML-based emails to let us know which emails recipients have opened. We do this to evaluate the effectiveness of our communications. If you would like to opt out of these emails, please see "Choice and Opt Out" below.


Communication from Us or the Site


Email Newsletter: You can sign up from several locations on the site, including the home page and registration form. You can also sign up from a forwarded copy of the e-newsletter itself. When you sign up, we collect your email address so that we can fill your e-newsletter request. We do not share our e-newsletter list with third parties other than the service provider who emails the e-newsletter for us. You may unsubscribe at any time by following the opt-out instructions included in each e-newsletter.


Automatic Email Notification / Account and Project Support: When teachers/adult advisors register, we use your profile information to automatically customize and send a welcome email message that your username and password and information on getting started with World Wide Wadlens. Similarly, we confirm the creation of Student Project Accounts by automatically sending the teacher/adult advisor a confirmation email that includes project login information. Finally, we automatically send a message to teachers/adult advisors when students submit a Project Showcase page for review.


Other Program Support: During the program, we may also communicate with you to respond to your inquiries, provide services you request, ask questions about projects teachers have asked us to include in the Project Showcase, or troubleshoot issues related to site use. We will communicate with you by email or, if you opted to provide the number, telephone.


Service-Related Announcements: On rare occasions when it is necessary to do so, we may send you service-related announcements. For example, we will email you to let you know about scheduled web site maintenance or a disruption in service.


Information Sharing

We do not share personally identifiable information with third parties. We do share aggregate demographic and Site usage information about our user base with funders, partners, and prospective participant groups. This information does not identify individual users. We reserve the right to disclose your personally identifiable information as required by law and when we believe that disclosure is necessary to protect our rights; to comply with a judicial proceeding, court order, or legal process served on us or the Site; or in connection with an actual or proposed corporate transaction or insolvency proceeding involving all or part of the business or asset to which the information pertains.


Choice and Opt Out

We ask you to provide personally identifiable information when you sign up for certain services such as a World Wide Waldens teacher account or e-newsletter. If we wish to use this information for a purpose other than that for which it was collected, we will ask for your consent prior to such use. To deactivate or delete your Walden program account, please contact us If you no longer wish to receive our newsletter updates you may opt out by following the instructions included in each newsletter or communication or by emailing us at


Accessing and Updating Personal Information

Teachers/adult sponsors may update personally identifiable account information any time. To correct or update information, login and make the changes on your Profile page. You can also contact us at or by phone 781-259-4712 for assistance.


Links to Other Sites

We do provide links to other sites not owned or controlled by The Walden Woods Project. While we strive to provide only the best external resources available, be aware that we are not responsible for the privacy policies of these sites. We strongly encourage you to read the policy of any site that collects personally identifiable information.



The security of your personal information is extremely important to us. We follow generally accepted industry standards to protect the personal information submitted to us, both during transmission and once we receive it. We restrict access to personal information to Walden Woods Project employees, contractors, and agents who need to know that information in order to operate, develop or improve our services. These individuals are bound by confidentiality agreements. Please be aware, however, that no method of transmission over the Internet, or method of electronic storage, is 100% secure. You should always use caution submitting personal information online. We use commercially acceptable means to protect your personal information once we receive it. If you have any questions or concerns about security on our site, please email us


Changes to this Privacy Policy

We reserve the right to update this privacy policy at any time. We expect such changes will be minor. If we make changes that materially affect our use or disclosure of personally identifiable information we have previously collected, we will post any changes on this page and notify you by email or by means of a notice on our home page.


If you have any questions or suggestions regarding our privacy policy, please contact us through this web site or at:


The Walden Woods Project, 44 Baker Farm Rd., Lincoln, MA 01773-3004

Phone:  781-259-4700