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America the Beautiful

Lyrics by Katherine Lee Bates | Music by Samuel A. Ward

  Overlaid pictures representing America

Keeping America beautiful starts with your own schoolyard and community. Help your students understand and act on their role in this four-assignment guide on Community Action and the Environment .
The amber waves of grain, purple mountains, and other breathtaking aspects of our nation’s landscape have inspired artists of all ages for centuries. See some works created by kids like you, and get inspired to make your own painting, drawing, or other piece of art.
In 2010, the explosion on the Deepwater Horizon drilling platform in the Gulf of Mexico caused a spill of almost 5 million barrels of oil—creating not only a visually disturbing sight but also an ecological crisis. While many organizations continue to study and help the Gulf and the five states that surround it, NIEHS research has focused on the health of workers and volunteers involved in the oil spill clean-up .

O beautiful for spacious skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountain majesties
Above the fruited plain!

America! America!
God shed His grace on thee,
And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea!

O beautiful for pilgrim feet
Whose stern impassion'd stress
A thoroughfare for freedom beat
Across the wilderness.

America! America!
God mend thine ev'ry flaw,
Confirm thy soul in self-control,
Thy liberty in law.

O beautiful for heroes prov'd
In liberating strife,
Who more than self their country loved,
And mercy more than life.

America! America!
May God thy gold refine
Till all success be nobleness,
And ev'ry gain divine.

O beautiful for patriot dream
That sees beyond the years
Thine alabaster cities gleam
Undimmed by human tears.

America! America!
God shed His grace on thee,
And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea.