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Kids running with boxes on their heads

After learning about turtles, kids at A Time For Science designed their own turtle shell from cardboard boxes and participated in “turtle races.” This is one of the many ways outdoor activities can keep kids active and learning at the same time.

A Time for Science

Greenville & Grifton, NC

Pitt County

A Time for Science is a learning center that teaches kindergarten to 12th grade students about nature and STEAM (Science, Technology Engineering, Art, and Math). They offer after school programs, field trips, and family events. Some of their programs include:

  • Nature Runs & Calories In/Calories Out: Kids run on a track through a forest, and learn about the calories they burn through exercising

  • Macroinvertebrates: Children catch bugs in a pond and learn about the different insects living around us

  • Garden Tours: Kids visit a vegetable garden to learn how their food grows, then cook some of the veggies growing in the garden

  • Wild Super Powers: Kids learn about animals’ “super powers” that allow them to survive in the wild

  • Kayak Rodeos: Kids kayak together while learning about water

  • Space Days: Kids learn about the moon, solar system, and build their own bottle rockets

You can start an outdoor program for children by simply looking at the natural resources around you. Are there trails you could walk on and identify trees? A pond full of creepy critters to catch and identify? A garden you can visit to learn about how plants grow? Birds you can identify by learning bird calls? After you identify the resources you have, you can research them online or at your local library. You can also look for experts who live in your town. For example, a community member who lives near A Time For Science is also a paleontologist, and he has led programs about fossils, featuring many from his own collection.

If you don’t have natural resources readily available, think about places you could easily visit. Look for a nearby state park, where you will often find a ranger ready with a free educational program. In addition, many state parks offer outdoor activities such as canoeing, kayaking, bird watching, and horse back riding. You can also connect with a local community through this community garden directory. Other great resources are Environmental Education Centers and Nature Play and Learning Centers. With a little creativity, you can get your community outside and learning something new!




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