Kids On the Land “KOL” is a unique Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) environmental program designed to teach children about the region where they live, connecting them to the land and a more sustainable future.
The “KOL” program began in 2003 when Executive Director Peggy Maddox created the program. It is based on the belief that kids need to reconnect to the land, especially the land in their environment. “Children have an innate need to be in nature and nature needs a new generation to be reconnected to the land and take us to a more sustainable future,” says Ms. Maddox.
KOL is designed for Kindergarten through 6th graders and has been offered in Texas to rural students in the Trans Pecos, Rolling Plains and Western Cross Timbers eco-regions and to urban students in the Blackland Prairie eco-region area. Since its inception in 2003, more than 7,200 students have experienced the KOL program.
KOL is unique among environmental education programs because it is designed to teach children about the place where they live, using the property of local land stewards. By partnering with schools, local landowners, government agencies, and volunteers, KOL has been able to offer schools opportunities, free-of-charge, for kids to be outdoors and to learn about and reconnect to the land where they live. Each program is incorporates specific elements the eco-region and history of the land the students are learning on. Kids On the Land moves classroom learning outdoors.
The program is presented in during the Spring and Fall school semesters and in 2017 will be presented to 1,000 students in 8 separate school systems.