Zion National Park's Children's Programs receive funding through donations to the Zion National Park Foundation. The goal of the Foundation is to help create 'Stewards for the Future' of Zion National Park.
Zion National Park
The Zion National Park Foundation has put your generous donations to work to expand the park’s learning opportunities for children. The Youth Education Initiative, launched this year, has significantly increased outreach to local schools, where rangers visit third, fourth, and fifth grades and bring Zion to the classroom with curriculum-based programs. By the end of April, Zion’s rangers will have visited 193 classrooms and nearly 4,500 students, resulting in an approximate 50% increase in the number of students reached since last year.
Zion’s programs, covering habitats, animal and plant adaptations, and geologic changes are highly interactive and very popular with students and teachers. In addition to expanding outreach, member donations helped fund the development of new online activity guides for the third, fourth and, fifth grades. The guides include Zion-related activities for teachers to present before and after rangers visit the classrooms. Many teachers have provided positive feedback on the outreach and activity guides, including comments such as:
“This fits perfectly with our curriculum! Thanks so much for coming!”
Third Grade Teacher, Three Falls Elementary, Hurricane, Utah
“I loved the new online pre- and post-activity guide. The pictures were great. The ranger’s enthusiasm was contagious. The students were active and engaged. Awesome visuals.”
Third Grade Teacher, LaVerkin Elementary, LaVerkin, Utah
“Love visuals and hands-on approach. Great presenter – organized, prepared, and holds fourth grader’s attention, great use of vocabulary.”
Fourth Grade Teacher, Panorama Elementary School, St. George, Utah
“Excellent – so fun to have passionate experts present this info – loved it! She was great with the kids!”
Fifth Grade Teacher, Bloomington Elementary, St. George, Utah
“Great visuals – correlates directly with our core (curriculum).”
Fifth Grade Teacher, Santa Clara Elementary, Santa Clara, Utah.
Member donations also are transforming Zion’s ranger-led children’s programs this summer. Funding has helped us plan to offer fourteen additional programs per week, increasing the weekly total from nineteen to thirty-three programs since last summer.
The programs are designed and presented with a young person's interest and learning level in mind. Children will learn about Zion and the natural world during these free programs. Children must be accompanied by an adult while attending all programs. This summer’s offerings include hands-on activities, talks, hikes, music, stories, a family evening program, and lessons designed especially for children and families. Program locations include the Zion Nature Center, Zion Lodge, South Campground Amphitheater, andtrails within Zion Canyon.
Zion’s South Campground Amphitheater comes alive this summer with a family evening program at 7:30 p.m. two nights a week, held earlier than the park’s regular evening programs so that young children can participate. The 45-minute program is a fun-filled exploration of Zion’s special features
Stellar Storytellers, a program held on the Zion Lodge lawn under the famous cottonwood tree, will be offered three times a week this summer. The program is designed for pre-readers, but is open to children under age ten. Visitors can relax in the shade as children listen to adventurous stories and create their own story about visiting Zion.
New this year, Music Magnificent, will bring song to the canyon in a program designed for pre-readers, but open to all children under age ten. The program, also held on the lodge lawn, will include songs about Zion as children sing and play a variety of small percussion and rhythm instruments.
Teens will explore the park with a new technology-based program, Waypoint Wanders. Led by a ranger and using Global Positioning System (GPS) devices, teens will find specific locations and learn about special features in the park. The program will include topographic map orientation and an exploration of the park’s use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) for managing historical, cultural, and natural resource data. The program will be a fun-filled and technology-packed adventure.
Information on days and times of these programs and all ranger-led programs will be listed in the summer Map and Guide, available in June. The Nature Center will be open from noon to 5:00 p.m. daily beginning Saturday, May 28, 2011. Children can explore interactive natural and cultural history exhibits highlighting park resources.
Children ages 6 to 12 can become a Zion Junior Ranger and have fun while learning about Zion National Park and the natural world. Self-guided Junior Ranger Handbooks are available year-round for $1.00 at the Zion Canyon Visitor Center and Zion Human History Museum Bookstores. Children five years old and younger can earn a Junior Ranger Pin by completing a Lil’ Junior Ranger Activity Sheet available for free at the Zion Canyon Visitor Center and Zion Human History Museum.
Expanded opportunities for children to learn about and enjoy Zion are a direct result of your generous donations to the Youth Education Initiative. Continued charitable donations to the Zion National Park Foundation will ensure future generations forge a connection to Zion’s natural world. We invite you to donate with a check or online by credit card at www.zionpark.org/foundation, or call the toll-free number 800-635-3959 and donate by telephone.
Thank you for including Zion National Park Foundation in your charitable giving this year.
out out the ZNHA bookstore for Junior Ranger products and fun books,
puzzles, and activities for kids
Zion National Park Foundation provides additional funding for
Family Programs in Zion Park
Zion" Custom Workshops offered by The Zion Canyon Field
Institute can be designed especially for your family. Call for more
(435) 772-3264 or 1-800-635-3959
View all Programs
and Seminars of the Zion Canyon Field Institute