Kids First gives Preschools Funding for Outdoor Education and technology




Kids First gives Preschools Funding for Outdoor Education and technology


Contact:  Shirley Ritter, Kids First, Executive Director 920-5363 or

Aspen, Colorado – June 6, 2012– Kids First Advisory Board awarded a one-time grant to support outdoor education and technology for preschools in Pitkin County. Over $3,200 was awarded for materials and curriculum such as garden areas, grow domes, a camera trap (to observe wildlife), camcorders (to upload videos for parents to see), website improvements, a composting bin, soccer equipment, and family potlucks with will use fresh vegetables grown in the garden, and cooking and documentation activities as part of the children’s curriculum.


“Our goal was to encourage being outdoors with children this summer,” Said Shirley Ritter, Kids First Director. “Programs already take field trips and learn outdoors, but this helps teachers take it to the next level, and gives the kids the ability to share it with their families.”


Six early childhood programs took advantage of the funding including Aspen School District Cottage, Early Childhood Center, Early Learning Center, Growing Years, Little Red Schoolhouse, and Wildwood School.  Together they serve over 300 families.


Ritter adds “Local childcare programs work hard on their quality and Kids First has an annual quality improvement grant to support that, but this was a gift on top of that, that we know will be well used and enjoyed by the teachers and children.”


Tina Person, teacher at Wildwood school added that the community can help by “contacting a preschool program if they have usable tree stumps or branches, or help a program set up a garden or composting area; even seasonal things like pumpkins or fresh items from people’s gardens might be a new experience for a child.”


If you would like to find a local childcare program to volunteer with or donate to, contact Kids First at 970-920-5363 or email



Posted on Wednesday, June 06, 2012