National Wildlife Federation, whose mission is to inspire Americans to protect wildlife for our children’s future, is pleased to announce a new partnership with FamilyFun magazine, a trusted, go-to source for travel recommendations and family activities for more than 20 years.
FamilyFun magazine has released a special “Get Outdoors” themed issue this month to help families spend more time in nature. The “Let’s Get Outdoors!” feature story appears in the June/July issue of the magazine, on newsstands June 5, and includes dozens of ideas ranging from mapping the neighborhood’s natural wonders to going on a photo safari.
“NWF research shows that 78% of moms want their kids to get outside more often,” said Meri-Margaret Deoudes, vice president, of the Be Out There movement at the National Wildlife Federation. “Forming a partnership with FamilyFun magazine is another way NWF is working to get kids outdoors. We both want to work together to see that children, youth, and families continue to have access today — and tomorrow — to the outdoors. Studies show time spent in outdoor spaces reduces stress; encourages cooperation and compassion; and helps children focus on schoolwork, think creatively, and score higher on school tests,” added Deoudes.
“When kids are in touch with nature, the whole world wins, since nature-loving children grow up with a greater sense of environmental responsibility,” said Ann Hallock, editor-in-chief, FamilyFun magazine. “The ideas we’ve included in our June/July issue are designed to engage, inspire, and entertain our kids – and make them healthier and happier.”
FamilyFun’s Top 3 Ways for Families to Celebrate Nature:
1) Throw a Backyard Campout
Even if only steps away from the comforts of home, camping immerses families in nature like nothing else. That’s the thinking behind the NWF’s Great American Backyard Campout on June 22. To participate, simply register at backyardcampout.org and make it a family affair. Invite friends to join, camp with a scout troop, class, or town, or see if a group campout nearby is already registered on NWF’s website. (And if June 22 doesn’t work out, you can still sign up, be a part of the count and camp at a later time.)
2) Turn the Yard into a Fun Zone
FamilyFun recommends setting up play areas in the front or side yard and hosting a gathering so that both neighborhood kids and their parents can get comfortable with your yard. Encourage a variety of activities – offer something to climb on like a swing set; a flat, paved surface for bikes; a place to relax with comfortable seating, like a hammock; and a private play space, such as a fort or pop-up tent. Finally, set up an outdoors arts-and-crafts station with a plastic table and chairs, a whiteboard and markers, and a waterproof bin for materials such as sidewalk chalk or cardboard and glue for nature collages.
3) Share Your Outdoor Observations
The scientists who study nature need our help—and it’s easier than ever for families to connect with them. Websites and apps such as nwf.org (search “wildlife watch”), scistarter.com, and the free app Project Noah get kids and parents started on fun outdoor projects such as counting butterflies, mapping mushrooms, reporting on the condition of local streams, and more.
For more fun ideas on how to celebrate nature as a family and get kids moving outdoors, check out the June/July issue of FamilyFun magazine in print or on the iPad, or visit familyfunmag.com.
FamilyFun readers with their own unique ideas for getting their families out in nature can share and win! Go to facebook.com/familyfun and click on the “Get Outdoors” tab to submit an idea. Each of nine winning entries will receive a prize package of gear from the National Wildlife Federation and could be featured in a future issue of FamilyFun.
About National Wildlife Federation
The National Wildlife Federation (NWF) is America’s largest conservation organization, inspiring Americans to protect wildlife for our children’s future. The organization seeks solutions to reduce the impact of climate change, protects and restores wildlife habitat, and connects kids of all ages with nature.
Be Out There™ is NWF’s movement to reconnect families with the outdoors. NWF’s practical tools and information help make being outside a fun, healthy and automatic part of everyday life. For other helpful resources and to learn more about NWF’s goal to get 10 million more kids spending regular time in the great outdoors, visit: www.BeOutThere.org.
About FamilyFun Magazine
Reaching an audience of more than 5 million, FamilyFun magazine gives parents ideas and inspiration needed to create unforgettable family moments. Part of Meredith Corporation’s Parents Network of brands, FamilyFun is a trusted expert on family cooking, vacations, celebrations, play, creative projects and learning — the full spectrum of fun that enriches the precious time families share. Written for parents with children 3 to 12, FamilyFun is unique in the marketplace, delivering real ideas for — and from — real families.