Initiative News & Calendar
November 17, 2017
Houghton Middle School wins Lexus Eco Challenge again
HOUGHTON — HOUGHTON — For the third time, Houghton Middle School students have won the Lexus Eco Challenge in the Land a ... >>more
November 16, 2017
Local educators present at Great Lakes Stewardship Initiative's Place Based Education Conference
The Great Lakes Stewardship Initiative (GLSI) Place Based Education Conference took place at Eastern Michigan Universi ... >>more
October 26, 2017
Students spend day learning at Lake Superior Water Festival
HOUGHTON — High school students from five Upper Peninsula counties learned more about the Great Lakes and the research b ... >>more


News & Announcements
CCISD & Western UP Math & Science Center receive $2500 grant to purchase snowshoes for middle & high school students.
The Keweenaw Community Foundation's Portage Community Health Endowment announced nine recipients of their 2011-12 grants.

The Western UP Center for Science, Math & Environmental Education, through the Copper Country ISD, received $2500 to purchase 25 pairs of snowshoes sized for middle and high school students.

The snowshoes will be used to introduce middle/high school students to snowshoeing as a way to promote outdoor winter recreational activity and enjoyment of nature. The Center has offered field trip programs for area schools during fall, winter, and spring since 2001. During the 2010-11 school year, 184 field trips were provided for 3444 students in grades 1-12, however only students in grades 3-6 were able to participate in the winter field trips, due to the lack of snowshoes for older students.

According to The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation (2005) and the University of Michigan (2004), during the last two decades, childhood has moved indoors. The average American boy or girl spends just four to seven minutes in unstructured outdoor play each day, and more than seven hours each day in front of an electronic screen! This shift to inside “play” profoundly impacts the wellness of our nation’s kids. In addition to skyrocketing childhood obesity rates, the United States has become the largest consumer of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) medications in the world and pediatric prescriptions for antidepressants have risen sharply.There is abundant research confirming that time spent outdoors benefits children’s overall physical and mental health, enhances teens' self-esteem, self-confidence, independence, autonomy, and initiative. These positive results persist for many years. (Kellert with Derr, 1998).

The Upper Peninsula is known for its long winters. For many, this is a five month period of sedentary behavior. This project will engage middle and high school students in snowshoeing during the winter via a school field trip program open to any school, so that they have a new and inexpensive way to enjoy our long and beautiful winters. Teachers tell us that many local teens have never snow-shoed.

809 Hecla Street | Hancock, Michigan 49930 | 906.482.0331 |