The Conservation Foundation works with over 500 Mighty Acorns® students a year, giving them opportunities within their regular school day to get out of the classroom, discover nature up close and to participate in taking care of local land and waterways through stewardship activities. By having these close encounters with nature at an early age we hope to inspire the next generation to be good stewards of the environment.
Mighty Acorns® is a stewardship-based environmental education curriculum for 3-5th graders that incorporates classroom curriculum, hands-on restoration and exploration activities, and is tied to Next Generation Science Standards and Common Core. Our experienced naturalists provide classroom and outdoor activities during the fall, winter, and spring seasons.
The Mighty Acorns® schools are connected with a local park district, forest preserve, or nature center to help with stewardship activities in natural areas. The students we have worked with over the last 15 years have improved natural areas by removing invasive species like buckthorn and garlic mustard and planting native seeds and trees. These habitats become an outdoor laboratory where children can increase their scientific knowledge and skills, while their stewardship activities foster a lifelong connection with nature and lead to a desire to preserve and protect prairie, woodland, and wetland habitats.
The Conservation Foundation delivers the Mighty Acorns® Program in DuPage and Kane Counties.
Johnson School – 4th graders partnered with Warrenville Park District at Summerlakes Park
Wegner School – 4th graders partnered with West Chicago Park District at Prestonfield Field
Hillcrest School – Six 4th and 5th grade classes partnered with City of Elgin at Hawthorne Hill Nature Center
Meadow Glens Elementary School Eco Club - partnered with the Naperville Park District at Meadow Glens Park
Hillcrest Elementary School Afterschool Club - partnered with City of Elgin at Hawthorne Hill Nature Center
Elgin Boys and Girls Club - 13 6th graders worked with staff of The Conservation Foundation at the Boys and Girls Club and Hawthorne Hill Nature Center
Mrs. Ixpata, a 4th grade teacher at Clifford Johnson Elementary in Warrenville whose classes participate in Mighty Acorns® says, “Mighty Acorns® is like a field trip that comes right to our classroom door three times a year, and I think it’s actually more impactful and relatable for my students since it is happening right in their community. When I ask my students each May what their favorite part of the school year was, it’s Mighty Acorns®, hands down, every time.”
If your school or club is interested in the Mighty Acorns® program, please click here to contact Carolyn Wagner.