Did you know the average American child spends over six hours a day in front of a screen -- yet only four to seven minutes playing outside?! Thankfully, in our area, Monmouth Conservation Foundation's Kids for Conservation program is helping to change that.

The inspiration behind Kids for Conservation is to grow future conservationists!  By exposing children to nature, we are planting the seeds of curiosity and a sense of wonder in children's lives today - encouraging an understanding and caring for the natural world for their entire lives.

The Kids for Conservation program is a STEM and STEAM based educational enrichment program that brings nature straight to kids!   STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. Alternatively, STEAM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math.  The program reaches children through conservation science into the lives of children in urban, suburban, and underserved communities.

A primary focus of the program is to foster a curiosity about nature and the outdoors in all children in all walks of life in Monmouth County.  To accomplish this, the program uses a variety of techniques to meet the needs of teachers, caregivers, and children as follows:

  • Kids for Conservation Contest – Kindergarten classes across Monmouth County use lesson plans to learn about a conservation science issue and then integrate what they learned into a class contest submission. Schools win cash prizes to support their STEM programs.

  • In-school visits – K-12 – MCF staff has a variety of interactive and fun educational modules that are taught in classrooms or club settings.

  • Afterschool modules – K-12 – MCF partners with after-school and community center organizations to offer STEM education in underserved programs across the county.

  • Days in the park – K-5 – MCF offers kids nature hikes, scavenger hunts, and other nature based crafts and activities at park locations across the county for families to enjoy.

Tower Garden Grants Awarded to Six Monmouth County Middle Schools

Thanks to the generous support of The Community Foundation of New Jersey, six schools have the opportunity to learn through aeroponic growing in the classroom!  Asbury Park, Howell, Holmdel, Neptune, Henry Hudson, and Red Bank middle schools were all awarded with a Tower Garden unit in fall 2018. 

Thank you to all the schools that applied to participate in the Tower Garden Grant program through Kids for Conservation.  Check the website or contact staff for updates on a 2019 program round.

Interested in learning more?  Please contact MCF program staff,
Amanda Brockwell at