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Schools back....how to engage those kiddos?

Updated: Feb 2

Now that school is back in session, the first round of assessments are done and everyone is getting back into the groove, time to think about getting kids outdoors at school. Even though the weather is turning tough in some regions, there is still lots of amazing activities to engage kids with nature around them at school. Here are some ideas! Here are some October examples from the Garden Club at Hough Elementary in Vancouver, WA. They take advantage of the sunshine in the outdoor classroom to paint bat boxes, make bat silhouette pictures and go on a nature scavenger hunt!


  • Recess programmed activities - when you have a captive audience at recess, there is almost always a small crowd that would love to take on some activities. Whether it is pulling a few weeds, harvesting seeds or an activity, kids love to help out in the gardens.

  • Train volunteers to run activities - Whether it is an adult volunteer or your student leadership team, set up programmed activities at recess, after school clubs or even a monthly meet & greet at the school. Ideas are all over pinterest for fun, easy and inexpensive nature activities to host at your school

  • Support curricula goals - Work with teachers at the school and develop activities that can be done outside. Even if it is just doing your morning meeting with students, writing assignments or practicing an art observation project. Any chance to get kids outside will benefit them (and you!)

  • After school clubs - There will always be interest to keep kiddos busy having fun after school. Organize an after school club for an hour. Clubs can be based on the volunteers' interest such as gardening, environmental education, arts and crafts, etc. Perhaps your parent organization can provide a small budget for snacks and supplies. It is amazing what $100 will do to support a club. Once you are up and going, chances are that you can find local donations for materials to support the club.....just ask around!

Do you need ideas for how to engage kids? Send me a message and we can connect you with some resources!