Robert Bateman Get to Know Program

Built on research and supported by a diverse array of educators, organizations, governments, and corporations, the Robert Bateman Get to Know Program has been inspiring connections between youth and nature for nearly a decade. Focused on encouraging youth to go outdoors and “get to know” their wild neighbours, the program’s initiatives include the writing and art contest, the interactive CD, products, and the school program.
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The problem, as Robert Bateman describes it, is that we live in a society where youth recognize 1,200 corporate logos and fewer than 12 species of wildlife found in their communities. Robert Bateman wants to turn these numbers around. He believes that having students learn local species’ names and characteristics will create increased awareness and understanding for wildlife, which will in turn instil increased empathy for their well being. In short, he wants to facilitate young Canadians connecting with nature because he believes this is an important first step towards raising a generation who will care for the Earth’s well being.
It is also a goal of the Robert Bateman Get to Know Program that young Canadians spend more time outdoors. This is particularly important in this day and age as children continue to abandon outdoor experiences for those they can participate in from within the home. This detachment from nature, and resulting sedentary lifestyle, can have a negative effect on the development of children.
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