L.L.Bean and the National Park Foundation (NPF), the official charity of America’s national parks, announced tremendous progress in a year-long effort to increase outdoor recreation among families and introduce more children to America’s national parks than ever before.
“As we kicked off our 100th Anniversary year, we set a goal to reignite America’s love of the outdoors,” said Chris McCormick, CEO of L.L.Bean. “We are thrilled to see the passion and enthusiasm for the outdoors that people have shared with us. Thanks to these engagements, we are nearly halfway toward our goal of contributing a million dollars to the National Park Foundation.”
- Acadia National Park, Maine: Through the Schoodic Education Adventure program, middle school children and their teachers participate in a 3 4-day park science adventure where participating students map study sites with GPS units and digital cameras and make metric maps in SERC's computer lab. The scientific process and findings are synthesized and shared through student photo journalism projects and podcasts that children create for their peers.
Assateague Island National Seashore, Maryland: Through the Assateague Adventure Academy, local elementary and middle school students will be exposed to hands-on science and technology learning in the park’s natural classroom in summer programs and after-school programs during the school year.
- Boston Harbor Islands, Massachusetts: Underserved youth from local communities participate in ranger and chaperone led day and overnight park visits where they will develop “How-to” materials based on their own park adventures ultimately creating the “How to Camp Like a Kid” series which will be distributed to community youth groups inspiring more park visits.
- El Camino Real, New Mexico: El Camino Real de los Tejas National Historic Trail Interactive Videoconference reaches over 1,000 students annually via a live-stream videoconference that connects classrooms across the state. Video presentations are delivered in many formats, including live performances, pre-recorded video skits, and PowerPoint and slide presentations. Through the America’s Best Idea grant, participants will develop a curriculum, materials and stewardship activities to educate 7th graders in underserved communities. Additionally, three local schools will be able to learn from this curriculum, take part in a volunteer trail-stewardship project, and participate in the interactive videoconference. The developed curriculum and materials will be made available free-of-charge, for future use, to all schools participating in the program.