Kids In Nature

Children have an innate need to experience nature first-hand—think natural reality rather than virtual reality. That’s more important now than ever, as the Electronic Age increasingly isolates us from our environment. For children to experience nature, they must have opportunities to explore outside.

To give children those opportunities, we sponsor field trips that allow young people to visit natural areas—like forests, fields, streams, and ponds—at nature centers, parks, sanctuaries, outdoor education centers, and other sites. We help pay for transportation and admission fees (where applicable). In recent years, we’ve sponsored student trips to Glen Helen Outdoor Education Center (Yellow Springs, Ohio), The Wilds (southeast Ohio), and Hueston Woods State Park (north of Oxford, Ohio).

We also help teachers and students build nature centers on their school grounds—centers that include trails, observation areas, and study sites. These centers enable students to conduct regular, long-term observations on natural systems. And finally, through Kids in Nature, we also support efforts that bring nature into students’ classrooms. TOS is funding a school-based program that teaches young children in Tamaulipas, Mexico, about neotropical songbirds. Dr. Rafael Herrera, a 2014 Ph.D. graduate of Miami University, developed and conducts that program.