Selected Research & Studies: Health benefits to Children from Contact with the Outdoors and Nature compiled by the Children & Nature Network. These articles outline mental, physical and social health benefits including decreased obesity rates, alleviation of attention disorders and improved interpersonal interactions. We at Earthroots often witness participants transform to be more joyful, energetic, helpful, kind and knowledgeable.
Can parents come to class, or is it a drop off only program?
Parents are welcome to join in on any of our children’s classes as long as they participate! We are a village and expect that everyone present will be engaged in the activities & set a good example for others on how to do so.
Earthroots programs seem so expensive. How much do the programs actually cost?
The program fee represents the actual cost per participant for our program and is $15 an hour or less. In order to provide the “magic” of Earthroots we maintain a 6:1 ratio of youth to mentors (sometimes 5:1 or 4:1). That ratio means we can do real mentoring and adventuring, safely and outside. Paying for two staff (starting staff pay is $12.00-$15.00 per hour) plus site fees and insurance adds up. It also adds value! If you break our program pricing down by the hour ($15 an hour for Program Fee to $10 or less with Scholarship), it might be less than you pay for a babysitter or other enrichment programs.
Does Earthroots accept Charter School payments?
Yes! We are currently vendors for iLead, Excel College Prep Academy, Inspire, Sage Oak, River Springs, Sky Mountain and other charter schools. Please let us know if you would like to invite us to be a vendor for your child’s charter school.
Earthroots advertises “rain or shine”, but what will you do if “El Niño” conditions occur this winter?
We love meeting in the rain and even the very occasional snow! We also have safety and emergency protocols for unsafe weather conditions. Classes may be rescheduled or relocated if necessary. We ask that parents check their email the day of class to be on the look out for updated class information.
Can I bring my younger kids to class even though they are not officially enrolled in the class?
We welcome younger siblings who are supervised by their parents; however, if the younger child is distracting the group, you may be asked to step away from the group momentarily, so the other children can focus on their projects. Please introduce your younger children to the instructors at the beginning of class and bring a signed Medical & Release form for them as well.
How about my mother? Can she come? She’s visiting for the week.
We welcome all parents and grandparents to our classes. All visitors must fill out a Medical and Release form and participate in the day’s activities.
Why can’t I use my cell phone during class?
All parents and children must turn off cell phones and other electronic devices during class to maximize our outdoor experience. We expect students to be attentive and focused in class and we hope that parents will model this behavior.
How can I extend the Earthroots learning at home?
I will be emailing you with suggested follow up question after each class. In the past, some families have used these questions as a launch pad for a variety of options, and other families have chosen not to use them at all. Your choice! You can interpret the questions as a way to engage your child and talk about stories of our day together, as academic homework, evening journaling, art projects or all of the above. It is up to each family to determine how to use the questions. I would love to see the work and stories that come from these follow up questions and conversations, but it is not mandatory to “turn them in.” If your child does create something and wants to “turn it in” or shown it to the instructors, we will enjoy seeing them and will respond with feedback. This can be a beautiful way to carry on the experiences of our adventures together.
What are your expectations of my child during class?
1. Treat each other with respect and kindness
2. Treat each place & property we visit with respect
3. Treat animals, plants and other things we find with respect
4. Students are in direct care of Earthroots instructors during class time and will need to stay with the group at all times
5. Disrespectful speech/actions, violence and destruction of property are not allowed during Earthroots classes
What happens if my child breaks a rule?
Instructors will bring it to the attention to the child in the moment and to the child’s parents after class (or during class if behavior warrants an immediate phone call) so that a solution consistent with child, parent and instructor can be made. If that behavior occurs a second time, parents and instructors will meet again with student to encourage behavior modification & co-create an agreement for positive change. During that conversation, we will make it clear that a third strike is grounds for Earthroots to limit involvement or remove child from Earthroots programs.
Do I have to pack vegetarian meals for my son even if our family eats meat at home?
Each child will be bringing their own lunch and snack to class every week. You are welcome to pack whatever you choose for your own child. We honor everyone’s unique nutritional needs and choices. There will be a few classes each semester where our class activity revolves around making food together! Earthroots instructors will provide wholesome, fresh, wild and/or organically grown ingredients for these meals. Earthroots does not serve food with white sugar or white flour. Earthroots strives to provide all gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian meals and snacks. If your child has a sensitivity or allergy that was not included on the Medical Release form, it is your responsibility to put it in writing and give it to the instructors before the first day of class.
Reducing Waste Practices
As a way to bring Earthroots teachings to life, we recommend packing lunches in re-useable containers that can be washed out and reused throughout the year including water bottles. Please reduce, reuse or exclude “one-time use” disposable plastic bags & bottles whenever possible.
Please let us know if you have further questions! firstname.lastname@example.org