This school year fourth graders can treat their families and friends to a national park visit for free, all year long.
Through the federal initiative, Every Kid in a Park, any fourth grader can download a pass, good through Aug. 31, 2017, for free admission to federal lands and waterways. The pass will also allow admission to all children under the age of 16 and up to three adults in a passenger vehicle or on bicycles. Parking, camping, boating, or special tour fees are not included.
Initiative background published online states about 80 percent of families live in urban areas and this program aims to get kids outdoors.
“Research shows that children ages 9-11 are at a unique developmental stage in their learning where they begin to understand how the world around them works in more concrete ways,” the program’s facts guide states. “At this stage, they are receptive to new ideas and most likely to hold positive attitudes towards nature and the environment.”
Adults who work with fourth graders, as teachers or through extracurricular clubs, Scouting, or churches, may download passes for kids participating in their programs. Educators or student activity advisers may also download up to four activity guides that include lesson plans and supporting resources. Topics include: exploring federal lands and waters, environmental stewardship, our nation’s native peoples, and citizen science. The lessons are aligned with generalized Common Core standards.
Passes are available to fourth-graders — or their home-schooled equivalent — only, and passes may not be shared. Each pass has a unique code.
To download passes or get more information, visit the Every Kid in a Park website.