Every Classroom Deserves A Ranger
-Visits in the Tri-County Area-
Zion National Park has a strong partnership with classrooms and schools in the surrounding communities. For many years education rangers have visited 3rd, 4th, and 5th-grade classrooms and provided curriculum-based programs that connect the animals, plants, and rocks of Zion to their school lessons. Zion borders Iron, Kane, and Washington counties, which have a combined 40 elementary schools, many of which are Title 1, meaning many of the students come from underserved and lower-income families. In Iron County, 7 of 9 elementary schools in the district are Title I, all elementary schools in Kane County are Title 1, and 14 of 28 elementary schools in Washington County are Title 1. Rangers coordinate with 4th and 5th-grade teachers in these schools and make a special effort to connect with schools not previously visited.
In developing and presenting these programs, Zion can continue to deepen its relationship with the local community and help create future park stewards. Rangers introduce 4th-graders to the Every Kid Outdoors pass allowing students and their families to visit parks for free. These presentations invite a new population of visitors to Zion and enable them to make their own deeper connections with a park that, for many of them, is less than one hour away.
With this funding, seasonal park rangers will visit schools and bring curriculum-based programming to classrooms with the most need. Having a ranger visit a classroom is a fun, engaging, and impactful experience. When learning about the resources protected by the NPS, students become aware of the value of land conservation and management. Whether it be a new interest in geology, a deeper understanding of desert ecosystems, or a comprehension of the importance of Leave No Trace values, students complete these lessons feeling more connected to the land and feeling as though they too are protectors of these natural wonders. Your gifts are enhanced by an additional grant from the National Park Foundation, seeing this program continue to grow even more in the seasons ahead.