Student | Teacher Resources

Natural Resources Link – Educator Newsletter

January 2018 Edition:
~ Environmental Education: Nebraska Focus (K-12)
~ ACE Camp: Is Learning Really This Fun? (Middle School)
~ Free Arbor Day Seedlings (K-12)
~ Prescribed Fire/Range Management Outreach (High School)
~ Scholarships Available for College Students (College)
~ Register for Central Region Envirothon Contests (High School)

November 2017 Edition  Articles: Connecting With Nature, Register for Groundwater Festival, Change to College Scholarships, Free Arbor Day Seedlings, Citizen Science in the Classroom

March 2017 Edition  Articles: Outdoor Classrooms-Take It Outside!, Free Arbor Day Seedlings, Free Monarch Habitat Educator Packets, CPNRD-Ron Bishop College Scholarship Program, Taking Registrations for Groundwater Festival, Adventure Camp About the Environment for Middle School


Outdoor Classroom Program (K-12)

The NRD’s Outdoor Classroom Programs were developed to provide funding to promote the education of our natural resources through hands-on learning.  Funding is provided through three types of grants: Outdoor Classroom, Community Grants, and Mini-School Grants (applications below).

*Outdoor Classrooms For Schools- up to $2,500  Application   Outdoor classrooms are provided to enhance learning through nature and found in both primary and secondary schools within the District. Schools that have received funding in the past include: Grand Island Northwest High School, Lexington District #22, Wood River Elementary, Centura Public Schools, Horizon Middle School-Kearney, Northeast Elementary-Kearney, Glenwood Elementary-Kearney, Doniphan-Trumbull Elementary, Cozad Community Schools, Grand Island Senior High, Kearney High School.   *Success Academy of Grand Island was the latest school to receive funding to create an outdoor classroom for butterfly monarch habitat at Dodge Elementary in Grand Island in the amount of $1,666.75.  Students from Grand Island Senior High’s Success Academy, Dodge Elementary, Skills Academy Elementary, and the Roots & Shoots Program partnered in the project.  They will use the scientific method to conduct real-world observation and data collection in the monarch butterfly habitat.  Vlcek Gardens, Chapman, provided project design and construction.  Pheasants Forever will present lessons for students to apply their knowledge in field observations by participating in national Monarch Butterfly field studies.  The outdoor classroom covers approximately 800 square feet, with implementation to be completed this spring.  CPNRD has provided funding towards 14 outdoor classrooms since 2001.

*Community Grant- up to $2,000   Application  CPNRD Community Grant provides community organizations grant funds to provide natural resources education to school groups or to the public.  *Little Sprouts Outdoor Classroom- The Kearney Area Children’s Museum received funding from CPNRD to develop a Prairie Garden Walkway in their Little Sprouts Outdoor Classroom.  Plants will be selected that represent the prairie throughout the four seasons of the year.  Tours and workshops will be conducted focusing on biodiversity, characteristics of native prairie plants, and the role that these plants play in supporting the prairie ecosystem.   

*Mini Classroom Grant- $35 per teacher   Application  The Mini Classroom Grant provides $35 to classroom teachers for natural resources classroom activities, field trips, etc. Additional funding is available for environmental education activities and projects. Contact Marcia Lee at (308) 385-6282 or for details.


Nebraska Children’s Groundwater Festival (5th)

All 5th-grade students (public & private schools) are invited to attend the Nebraska Children’s Groundwater Festival, held at the Central Community College and College Park in Grand Island, NE.  This educational event brings water and natural resources professionals together to educate students about groundwater conservation.
Find out more!


Scholarship Program

CPNRD-Ron Bishop College Scholarship   This program awards $1,000 scholarships to 5 students majoring in or enrolled in a natural resources field and is open to college students and high school seniors.  Return applicants and recipients are welcome to apply.   Scholarship Page


Summer Camps

Summer Camp Scholarships  The Central Platte NRD offers $100 scholarships for middle and high school students to attend natural resources-related summer camps such as ACE and Range Judging camps.  The NRD provides $100 per child towards registration costs to attend approved the following summer camps.  Eligibility Requirement: Students must live within the Central Platte NRD (map).   For more information on how to receive a summer camp scholarship, email Marcia or call (308) 385-6282.

NRDs ACE Camp  ACE Poster 2018 Middle school students residing in the CPNRD are encouraged to attend ACE- Adventure Camp about the Environment (ACE), hosted by Nebraska’s 23 Natural Resources Districts and several education partners.  ACE Camp will be held at the State 4-H camp in Halsey, Nebraska from June 10-13, 2018.  The camp is for students who will have completed 6th, 7th or 8th grades. While at the camp students will learn from experts in the fields of forestry, energy, wetlands, soils, range, water and wildlife. Students will also have the opportunity to participate in archery, zip line, tanking and tubing at the camp. Contact Desarae Catlett at (308) 645-2250 or email:

Nebraska Youth Range Camp High school students are invited to attend the 55th Nebraska Youth Range Camp to be held June 2018 at the Nebraska State 4-H Camp in Halsey. Range Camp is for students between the ages of 14-18. The camp’s dynamic curriculum appeals to students with a wide array of interests including, but not limited to, rangeland management, conservation, ecology, animal science, and wildlife. Students who attend this camp will be actively involved with field activities, lectures, hands-on experience, recreational leadership and team-building activities.  POLICY REGARDING NEBRASKA YOUTH RANGE CAMP SCHOLARSHIPS  Central Platte NRD will reimburse qualified students in the amount of $100 after confirmation from the Society of Range Management that the students have attended the full camp.  CPNRD will request a list of camp attendees from the SRM and mail the sponsorship check to the parent listed on the registration form.  Students must request sponsorship prior to attending the camp by providing a copy of their registration form to Marcia Lee:    Fax: (308) 385-6285    Mail:  Central Platte NRD, 215 Kaufman Ave, Grand Island NE 68803


High School Contests

Click on the contests hosted by CPNRD below for details/results of each contest:

Envirothon   |   Land Judging   |   Range Judging