OutdoorIQ is proud to announce a wonderful partnership with Scholastic Shooting Sports Foundation to offer a great fundraising opportunity for the SSSF teams.
Reading is critical to the success of children as they progress through school and is even more important to success in future careers. Recently, reading has been a major topic in the news. In many states, including Ohio, students must show they are proficient readers to progress to the fourth grade. A challenge for many young readers is finding books that they are interested in reading. A child’s love for reading is closely connected to the opportunity to read books about which they are interested.
Children and youth interested in outdoor activities such as hunting, fishing and shooting, sometimes find it difficult to find books they would like to read. Nationally there is a significant discrepancy between our nation’s boys and girls reading scores. Boys routinely perform at much lower levels than girls on standardized reading assessments. Some researchers have found many young boys fail to see real life applications in what they read. Some boys stop reading because they think there is no practical value in reading. Young boys, and even girls, who have a great interest in hunting, fishing and other outdoor activities will eagerly read books about those topics. Having books about these activities available to young readers is critical in developing a love for reading and increased reading proficiency.
We are excited about recent partnerships with national organizations that include ABC books for younger children. The national initiative, ABC Books for Hunting Heritage and Angling Legacy, allows Miami Valley Outdoor Media to partner with major, national, conservation organizations to make new, high interest books available to young and even experienced readers. Outdoor IQ has launched a line of ABC books that aligns with the focus of each organization. Another benefit of the initiative is that proceeds from the sale of each book are donated back to the organization to support their youth programs.
Outdoor IQ has written the ABCs of the Wild Turkey for the National Wild Turkey Federation (NWTF), the ABCs of the White-tailed Deer for Whitetails Unlimited, the ABCs of Upland Hunting for Pheasants Forever, ABCs of Waterfowl for Delta Waterfowl, the ABCs of North American Big Game for the Dallas Ecological Foundation, and the ABCs of Freshwater Fishing for the Catch a Dream Foundation. These books are not only written to help young children learn their letters and begin to read, but also to learn about the wonderful things each organization is passionate about.
If you would like to find out more about these and the other books Outdoor IQ offer, you can visit their website at www.outdoorIQ.org.
NEW Ultimate Youth Shooting Sports Guide - NOW AVAILABLE!!
We are excited to announce our new Ultimate Youth Shooting Sports Guide is NOW available! Our comprehensive guide to the shooting sports is now available and can be ordered. The new book is available for $19.95 plus S&H. The book is a wonderful resource for youth who would like to learn more about the various shooting sports that youth can participate in. This 120 page, full color book is a great book for boy scouts, 4H shooting sports participants, or anyone wanting to learn more about how youth can enter the world of shooting sports.
Check it out and purchase today at http://www.outdooriq.org/books-and-products/ultimate-youth-shooting-sports-guide/.
We are still committed to engaging children in the outdoors and will be looking at new ways we can achieve this goal in the future. We are very excited about our new venture into developing classroom curriculum.
Habitat in the Classroom is standards-based, integrated curricula that teach students about various habitats. The curricula are aligned to Common Core Standards for English Language Arts and Math and will also be aligned to the Next Generation Science Standards once they are complete.
Habitat in the Classroom's first curriculum program is a partnership with Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever and focuses on grassland and upland habitats. Check out more info under their Curriculum Page.
There is nothing more special than taking a young person out in the field, forest or marsh to go hunting. It doesn’t matter whether it is the young hunters first time or not, the experience will create a lasting memory for both of you that will last a lifetime. Today, many states have created special seasons and hunts just for young hunters. These special seasons have created wonderful opportunities for young hunters to more successful in the field.
Better Chances for Success
Many states have these special hunts that open before the general season. This means that there are fewer hunters and less competition. Since only youth are allowed to hunt during these times, the young people have the day or weekend to themselves. Because these seasons and hunts typically open before the regular seasons, game is usually less wary and sometimes easier to hunt. This, in turn, can create a more successfu hunt for your young person.
Do Your Part
In all states with special youth seasons and hunts, the regulations require each young hunter to be accompanied by an adult, licensed hunter. For obvious reasons, this requirement is necessary to create a safe hunting environment for all hunters in the field. This also creates a wonderful opportunity for you to teach safety in a hands on way while hunting. It also allows you to focus on teaching your youngster all of the other skills that they must learn to be a successful hunter. Take the time to teach them what sign to look for, how to listen, how and when to shoot when the time comes and, most of all, how to just enjoy all of what our wonderful Creator has made.
Check Your State’s Youth Hunting Regulations
It is important to be familiar with all of the opportunities that your state makes available to young hunters. Many states are recognizing the need to give the next generation of hunters the opportunity to experience all that we have come to love and enjoy. However, some state are more youth friendly than others. Many states have taken the findings of the Families Afield Report and have acted on it in a very positive way.
Others still have very restrictive youth hunting regulations. In my home state of Ohio, I am very proud of our state’s proactive movement to get young people involved at an early age. A few years ago, Ohio created an apprentice license that allows young hunters to hunt three years prior to passing hunter safety. This has allowed my son and daughter to get interested in hunting at a young age. My daughter asked to take hunter safety at age six, so I agreed. Because she wanted to read the test herself, she missed passing the test by just ten points. She obviously wanted to hunt bad enough to sit through hunter safety training and take a pretty difficult test. Without an apprentice license, she would not have been allowed to try this wonderful sport of hunting when she had the interest. Many states don’t even allow youth to take hunter safety until they are twelve. I know many may disagree with me but if my daughter had to wait until she was twelve, I am afraid I would have lost her interest to other things that kids typically get caught up in, like sports, activities and video games!! If your state is restrictive to young hunters, I urge you to work with your state to try to convince them to see the importance of getting our children interested early in life when we can really make an impact on them.
Youth seasons and special hunting opportunities are a great way to spend time with your young person. Please take advantage of these seasons and hunts and pass on your love and knowledge as you share time in the field, blind or treestand. These youth hunting opportunities are a great way to help make the next generation more successful so they will want to continue to pursue this wonderful thing we call hunting!!
Dave Shellhaas, chief editor