National Parks are an excellent resource for formal and informal educators alike. Here in the Chesapeake Bay watershed, we are lucky enough to have access to over 50 National Parks that offer opportunities for students to get out of the classroom and explore the region’s unique history, culture, geology, ecology, environment and more.
How can you get your students to a park? This year, the National Parks Trust (NPT) is once again hosting the Kids to Parks Day School Contest! The purpose of the contest is to help teachers engage their students with their local parks. Past winners include over 20 classes from Chesapeake Bay watershed states and Washington, DC that have implemented some truly impressive projects in parks.
This national contest is open to all schools across the country and in the U.S. territories. Students can submit proposals for a Kids to Parks event at a park in their community. These events are a great opportunity for participation in service learning projects. As an educator, you can help your students develop their ideas, but should allow them to complete the proposal in their own words. Students are encouraged to be creative when submitting the entry form. Videos, pictures and drawings are encouraged to supplement the proposal.
NPT will award scholarships up to the amount of $1,000 to winning entries for each class. These scholarships will be used by the winners to implement their Kids to Parks event during the week leading up to May 18th. The scholarship funds can be used to costs associated transportation, healthy snacks and refreshments, park experience related fees, stewardship project supplies, and more.
The deadline entry submission is Friday, March 1st. Winners will be announced on Monday, March 18th.