Earth Day — April 22, 2017

The first Earth Day on April 22, 1970, activated 20 million Americans from all walks of life and is widely credited with launching the modern environmental movement. The passage of the landmark Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, Endangered Species Act, and many other groundbreaking environmental laws soon followed. Growing out of the first Earth Day, Earth Day Network (EDN) works with over 50,000 partners in nearly 200 countries to broaden, diversify, and mobilize the environmental movement.

Nature Noticing Excursions: Making Connections at Camp through Seeing, Story, and Drawing

In the November/December 2015 issue of Camping Magazine, I wrote about a phenomenon I called Noticing Deficit Disorder (NDD), a culturally induced form of vision loss and nature blindness, which I believe camp can help cure. Those with NDD will frequently walk down a street and completely fail to notice, much less appreciate, the beauty of the natural world around them. Invariably, they are too distracted by their hand-held digital devices.

No Child Left Inside Act - Reintroduced

On December 10, 2015 - President Obama signed into law the Every Student Succeeds Act which contains the provisions included below in the No Child Left Inside Act.  Find more information about the Every Student Succeeds Act.

ACA Nature Education

The American Camp Association (ACA) believes that young people benefit emotionally, socially, physically, and spiritually from spending time in close contact with the natural world. This critical connection is essential to healthy development. ACA provides a variety of resources for camps and other youth program providers interested in connecting children and families with nature. 

Nature Resources for Camps and Families

Connecting with Nature

"Camp is a time to explore, a time to let your brain grow, and a time to connect with the outside." 

In this video blog, former ACA CEO Tom Holland explains the benefits of getting outside at camp. Camp not only provides children with an opportunity to get active, it also provides an opportunity for today's kids to get outside and forge a connection with the natural world. Camp allows kids to get outside, get dirty, and learn about nature.

Los regalos naturales de los campamentos

Cuando estaba en la escuela secundaria, todos los veranos mi amigo Pete Sebring desaparecía durante unas semanas para ir a un campamento al oeste de Colorado Springs. A mí me disgustaba. Para mí, esas semanas húmedas de julio en Kansas se hacían eternas, y después volvía Pete contando sus aventuras —como si hubiera estado en el país de las mil maravillas alpino. 

Keeping It Going: The Nature Connection Year-Round

So you did it! All your planning and intentionality in working to make connections to nature a cornerstone of your program are paying off. You watch happily as, in those glorious days of camp, children play enthusiastically and freely in the woods near their cabins, finding lucky stones, or making mini-dams in the brook. Or maybe they cleared a vacant lot and planted cucumbers and tomatoes. Perhaps they managed the recycling on their own or worked to conserve water. They learned all the local trees and enthusiastically studied bugs on their way to rest hour.

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