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June 4, 2020

UM Environmental Education program launches summer offerings

The University of Montevallo’s Environmental Education program is working to keep kids connected to nature this summer by offering simple and fun activities children can complete at home.

Although social distancing guidelines will prevent the Environmental Education program from holding in-person camps this summer, the program has partnered with the UM Office of Partnerships and Outreach to create a free activity guide filled with educational crafts and interesting nature-themed information.

The activity book is free for any participant who registers on the Environmental Education webpage at Montevallo.edu/eeprograms. After registration, participants will receive their activity guide in the mail beginning June 8. The program is also selling optional supply kits to explore the outdoors and complete activities in the activity guide for $35 each.

“We wanted to be mindful of the current situation and still provide outdoor learning opportunities for kindergarten through fifth-grade students,” said UM Environmental Education Director Jecca Shumate. “We will greatly miss seeing everyone in person, but are hopeful to reach our audience through the booklet and online content.”

Activities in the guide will coincide with biweekly Environmental Education email newsletters, which will include additional resources such as recommended reading lists, educational videos, ask-an-expert segments, how-to videos for some of the crafts and activities and “Creature Features.”

“We realize this is such an unusual and unprecedented time for our local communities, families and the world at large; and we wanted to do our part—even if it’s on a small scale,” said UM Director of Partnerships and Outreach Sarah Hendren. “While we’re not able to offer our traditional in-person academic camps for youth this summer, we hope this workbook and additional resources provide some fun content that young learners can use throughout the summer while at home. Additionally, this was a chance to partner with some other local organizations and encourage children and families to explore the outdoors together.”

For more information about the activity booklet and the Environmental Education program, please email eeprograms@montevallo.edu.