Lessons from the Canyons

Students Explore the Mysteries of Arches National Park
Liz TrabuccoField Notes
— Dawn Kish

Canyon Country is a place like no other. You can feel its magnificence everywhere you look. The magic lies in the orange and red of the sun-blasted sandstone, the vast array of plant life that persists despite the unforgiving nature of the desert, and the deep silence and stillness that it offers. The canyons have many lessons to teach.

Happy children running outside amongst the red sandstone formations at Arches National Park
Dawn Kish

In spring 2018, a group of fourth-grade students had the opportunity to visit Arches National Park in Utah and participate in a range of activities. A world of learning opened up as these students explored the natural beauty of the canyons, discovered their cultural and historical heritage, and participated in various educational activities. On a ranger-led interpretive hike, students learned about the awe-inspiring rock formations surrounding them, how to classify rocks and minerals native to the area, and they even learned a song about mineral properties.

A group of students and a park ranger sitting on a picnic blanket on the ground outside looking at pamphlets about wildlife at Arches National Park
Dawn Kish

This field trip was part of our Open Outdoors for Kids program that seeks to create pathways for children to connect with the natural, cultural, and historical wonders of our national parks. This program facilitates outdoor activities, experiential learning, and cultural heritage exercises that foster an enduring connection between children and their public lands. Help us continue to expand classrooms lessons into parks by donating today!

A group fo students and a park ranger in a school bus at Arches National Park
Dawn Kish

This field trip, and many others like it, were made possible through a grant from the George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Foundation which aims to engage the underserved youth of Utah with America’s National Parks to help encourage a life-long relationship. The goal is to reach over 10,000 Utah students by the end of the 2018-19 school year.


I am concerned looking at this picture that they are walking on the cryptobiotic crust. Please tell me it is not the case. Thank you.
Looks like a sand-covered trail to me...?

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