Fourth graders in the library participate in virtual field trip.

William Floyd Elementary School Group B hybrid students in Mrs. Haakonson’s and Mrs. Chisari’s classes are pictured with Ranger Pat (on screen). Also pictured are back row (Mrs. Haakonson, Ms. Finne and Mrs. Chisari.

William Floyd Elementary school fourth-grade students recently had the opportunity to virtually explore the Fire Island National Seashore with Fire Island Park Rangers through the “Every Kid Outdoors” Program, a national initiative that provides fourth graders across the nation with free access to national parks, national monuments, wildlife refuges, marine sanctuaries, forests and federally-designated historic sites. In a typical school year, this field trip would take place in person, but due to the COVID-19 restrictions currently in place, fourth-grade teachers and the school’s librarian arranged for this fun virtual experience.

Visiting with Ranger Pat through technology, students in Mrs. Haakonson’s and Mrs. Chisari’s classes gathered socially distant in the media center while 25 of their classmates signed in from home, to be part of this adventure. Ranger Pat took students on a virtual tour of Fire Island, discussing its important role as a barrier island, the numerous wildlife that can be found there and also the various theories on how Fire Island got its name. Mrs. Carriero’s and Mrs. Lane’s classes also participated in this virtual exploration adventure under the guidance of Ranger Ali. Field trips were scheduled over two days to ensure all fourth-grade students had an opportunity to participate.

Picture Of Every Kid Outdoors Program pass

“Through technology, we can continue working with the Fire Island Rangers and the National Park Service to bring some of our island’s natural resources to life,” said Margaret Finne, school librarian, William Floyd Elementary School. She added that while this program usually is geared toward national parks that are local to various schools, it can be used more broadly to explore national parks, monuments and historic sites all across the nation. 

Additionally, students in the fourth grade, can get a free annual pass (pictured) to visit more than 2,000 federal recreation areas with their families, classmates and friends. The Every Kid Outdoors Program is an interagency collaboration between the Department of the Interior, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and U.S. Forest Service that provides fourth graders with free access to explore, learn and play in spectacular settings, including national parks, wildlife refuges, marine sanctuaries, forests and more. Fourth graders and their families can click here to get their free pass today!

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