RELEASE: Outdoors Alliance for Kids and Scholastic Announce All Kids Outdoors Essay Contest Winners


April Thomas

Outdoors Alliance for Kids and Scholastic Announce All Kids Outdoors Essay Contest Winners
Nearly 2,000 Kids Nationwide Submitted Entries

Washington, D.C., (May 23, 2019) — The Outdoors Alliance for Kids and Scholastic, the global children’s publishing, education, and media company, are proud to announce the winners of the All Kids Outdoors Contest. Nearly 2,000 fourth through sixth grade students from across the nation submitted essays and accompanying illustrations to explain why the outdoors matter.

Grand prize winner Violet M., a 4th grader from Kalispell, MT, wrote in her essay: “When I’m outside, I feel like the whole world is in balance. Studies show that being outside and a part of nature will decrease stress and make us more reassured.”

Katie, B., a 6th grader from Ellisville, MO, wrote in her Honorable Mention winning essay, “Parks are great to help improve our environment, but they also improve our relationships. Just think of the first time you went to the park and were leery of going down the big slide. Often, you watched others, and those around you would give you the courage to try it. Those experiences tie us together with others rather than being isolated in our homes.”

Fifth grader, Indi M. of McLean, VA, the second Honorable Mention winner, shared “We need the outdoors, and it needs us. [It provides] physical and mental health benefits, [and I like] how it maintains the atmosphere, and how incredibly high-spirited it can make you feel.”

Sweepstakes winner Emmanuel O., a 5th grader from Falls Church, VA wrote, “When a person is outside, they get to experience many things like trees, plants, animals, fungi, and other things that are in nature. These help them to think about new things or ideas that could help their work, home, and relationship with other people. This is why many towns, cities, and communities are building parks and educating people on outdoor activities, so that they can enjoy healthy living.”

Contest winners will receive prizes including books from Scholastic and the Grand Prize winner will receive of a trip to Olympic National Park. Teachers of the winning students also receive prizes to select educational resources for their classrooms from The Scholastic® Store. Read the winners’ full essays and see their illustrations here.


About the Outdoors Alliance for Kids (OAK): OAK is a national strategic partnership of organizations from diverse sectors with a common interest in connecting children, youth and families with the outdoors. The members of OAK are brought together by the belief that the wellness of current and future generations, the health of our planet and communities and the economy of the future depend on humans having a personal, direct and life-long relationship with nature and the outdoors. OAK brings together more than 100 businesses and organizations, representing more than 60 million individuals to address the growing divide between children, youth and the natural world. For more information:

Published by Jackie Ostfeld, OAK Chair

My name is Jackie Ostfeld. I am the co-founder and Chair of the Outdoors Alliance for Kids and the Director of Sierra Club's Outdoors for All campaign. I am an advocate for connecting kids with nature. Views are my own.

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