NatureCollections: Can a Mobile App Connect Kids to Nature?
Kids are spending less and less time outside and more and more time in front of screens. What if we could harness their enthusiasm for technology to reconnect them to nature? The NatureCollections app seeks to do just that by engaging kids aged 7-12 in an exploration of the natural world. NatureCollections lets children build and curate photo collections and classify and describe their nature photos. Kids using the app are encouraged to explore their natural surroundings to complete photo challenges and scavenger hunts. Our 3-week study findings showed that children spent more time outside using the app, and it increased their curiosity about the types of species and plants they saw and photographed. Ultimately, we hope that NatureCollections will support children’s positive stewardship of the environment.
Projects in Digital Youth
- Science Everywhere: Reflections on the Process of Wrapping Up a Research-Practice Partnership
- Digital Badges for STEM Education: Case Studies of Youth Digital Badge Use in Sociotechnical Context
- NatureCollections: Can a Mobile App Connect Kids to Nature?
- ConnectedLib: Helping Librarians Use Digital Media to Make Learning Connections with Youth