Cincinnati Nature Center, Maple Sap Collecting, CNC Playscape, Krohn Conservatory Butterfly Show, Shaw Farm, Cincinnati Zoo, Museum Center, Gorman Heritage Farm
Search Institute – “Building blocks of self-esteem are belonging, learning, and contributing. Camps offer unique opportunities for children to succeed in these three vital areas and even beyond home and school.”
Michael Popkin, Ph.D., family therapist and founder of Active Parenting
“The biggest plus of camp is that camps help young people discover and explore their talents, interests, and values. Most schools don’t satisfy all these needs. Kids who have had these kinds of (camp) experiences end up being healthier and have less problems which concern us all.”
Peter Scales, Ph.D., noted author/educator, and Senior Fellow, The Search Institute
“At camp, children learn to problem-solve, make social adjustments to new and different people, learn responsibility, and gain new skills to increase their self-esteem.”
Why Kids Need Nature?
“Parent & Child: Why do children need a meaningful relationship with nature?
Richard Louv: Research suggests that a connection to nature is biologically innate; as humans, we have an affinity for the natural world. When children spend most of their time indoors, they miss out. Problems associated with alienation from nature include familiar maladies: depression, obesity, and attention deficit disorder. Kids who have direct access to nature are better learners. Exposure to nature has been shown to reduce stress and increase attention spans.
When a child is out in nature, all the senses get activated. He is immersed in something bigger than himself, rather than focusing narrowly on one thing, such as a computer screen. He’s seeing, hearing, touching, even tasting. Out in nature, a child’s brain has the chance to rejuvenate, so the next time he has to focus and pay attention, perhaps in school, he’ll do better.”
The Cincinnati Nature Center
Providing positive experiences in nature
Regardless of the lesson choice, our first priority is to make sure students feel comfortable and safe. Each day we hope to increase the comfort level students and adults have in natural settings.
Discovery first, discussion second
Students will be exposed to local ecosystems and biodiversity with hands-on activities with authentic materials. Their discoveries and questions will be tied back to lessons in school and the organisms that live in their backyards.
Small student to naturalist ratios
In order to provide hands-on experiences without harm to our local natural resources, small groups of 8-10 students per naturalist are key. This also allows us to follow student interests and provide personal attention to each student.
Training for adults (teachers and parents)
Parents, teachers and other adults in the lives of students are the ones with the real power to expose children to nature on a regular basis. Cincinnati Nature Center provides training for these adults on how to take children outside for learning opportunities.
Year-Round Field Trips, Summer Camps, Raising Young Gardners
These programs allow our inner-city children to have experiences beyond their neighborhoods that most families wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford. It allows them to connect socially to children and adults of all economic, cultural and racial backgrounds and provides an extra incentive for the hard work they do in school, in the ICYO Academic Intervention Program and on the tennis courts. ICYO’s goal is to provide outdoor experiences such as hiking, creaking, fossil hunting, nature observation & nature journal writing.
Contact Jeanne Bell at email@example.com for more information or call the ICYO office at 513.731.7312
Two months (June & July) ICYO Tom Horn Summer Tennis Camp at Withrow High School tennis courts
One week of overnight camp at Camp Joy in Clarksville, Ohio sponsored by the Gladys Wittmeyer Knox Foundation
One week of Earthkids Long Branch Farm Day Camp sponsored by the Cincinnati Nature Center Earthkids program
Two weeks of Horse Therapy Day Camp at New Day Ranch.
Raising Young Gardeners to the Teaching Kitchen
New this year with a grant from Xavier University Department of Health Services to provide a gardening plot for our low-income inner city children to learn gardening while growing nutritious foods, harvesting them and cooking healthy foods in our ICYO Learning Center new kitchen. ICYO is presently growing leafy greens and herbs in our donated Juice Plus Hydroponics Tower Garden. Outdoor gardening will begin in the spring.
I have been in this program since I was about 7 or 8 years old. Now I am 14 years old. This program has helped with my grades, helped with trying to be a better person in life and it has helped me try to be a better role model. I have learned that success in life in that is the best way to live. “If you can’t find a good role model, be one.” Miss Lillie (ICYO staff) says and has been a good role model to me. She is teaching and doesn’t even recognize she is doing that. She has been one of my best role models.