Maryland Partnership for Children in Nature
Partners please note new links in the right-hand column, designed to make it easier for you to access important information about Partnership meetings and agendas and the work of the Partnership.
Celebrate Maryland Outdoors Days
June is Great Outdoors Month and the Maryland Partnership for Children in Nature invites everyone to get outside and discover the Children’s Outdoor Bill of Rights!
Kick off your summer and begin the Celebration with National Get Outdoors Day on June 8; the two-week event ends with the Great American Backyard Campout on June 22. In between, take part in some of the numerous beautiful places and fun activities that Maryland has to offer, from the mountains to the sea. Information will be compiled here, in an easy format. Go for a hike, catch a fish, camp under the stars…
If you are an outdoor center, park, nature area, place of worship, community center, or a similar place offering family-oriented outdoor recreation activities and events between June 8 and 22, you are invited to enter your activities! Your participation in Celebrate Maryland Outdoors Days will help you to advertise your site and events, and you will be part of helping to get more children and their families outside to enjoy our natural world!
Governor O'Malley Renews The Stream Restoration Challenge
New grant program open to local governments, schools and NGOs
“Our Bay, Our Forested Streams, Our Children’s Future” Maryland’s Stream Restoration Challenge is a competitive grant program open to local governments and non-government organizations to establish 1,000 acres of stream-side forests by 2015. For the challenge, the State and its partners made $6 million available to plant forested stream buffers with the goals of improving Bay water quality and creating opportunities for middle and high school students to engage in service-learning and environmental literacy activities. $2 million dollars was awarded through the first round of funding. The remaining $4 million will be awarded to projects that begin after September 2, 2013 and will plant in fall 2013, spring 2014, and/or fall 2014.
The Request for Proposals and additional resources are available online.
16 Organizations Partner to Expand Opportunities for Children in Nature
In a new effort supporting Governor Martin O’Malley’s Children in Nature (CIN) initiative, 16 state, federal, county and private organizations are coming together to improve and expand opportunities for children to learn about, play in and experience our natural world. The new public-private effort, which officially re-establishes the Governor’s Partnership for Children in Nature, will be responsible for putting the state’s CIN plan into action. Read more...
Nature Play Spaces
When was the last time you or your child balanced on a tree log, or jumped off a rock?
There are new nature play spaces popping off all over Maryland at local and State parks, schools and public spaces.
Explore them for yourself in the new Nature Play Spaces Pattern Book.
The Nature Play Space “Pattern Book” is a visual tool used to convey the concept of creating play areas with natural components. These areas provide an early connection for children with nature, an opportunity for both physical and creative play and support children’s physical, intellectual, and emotional development. This on-line tool provides not only a map of where some nature play spaces can be found in Maryland, but allows the user to navigate through a list of components and activities that are typically found in a nature play space such as climbing, hiding and balancing.
By showing some on the ground examples, the Partnership for Children in Nature and DNR hope to spur creativity and inspire the development of nature play spaces across the state, providing an alternative to standard metal and plastic playgrounds. Check the site often, as new images and information will be added often!