Discovery Education and OPEI Foundation Broaden TurfMutt Education Outreach to Families Across the Country
–Classrooms across the U.S. invited to enter the second annual ‘Spruce Up Your School’ Sweepstakes for a chance to win $5,000 toward better green space –
Silver Spring, Md. and Alexandria, Va. (October 25, 2012) – Discovery Education and the Outdoor Power Equipment Institute’s Education and Research Foundation today announced a series of new educational features for TurfMutt, a science-based program featuring standards-aligned curriculum, which teaches youth, grades K-5, how things grow, the value of personal and community green space and how to tend to them in a sustainable way.
A redesigned website launched (TurfMutt.com) on October 23 allows TurfMutt to reach both educators and families through an expanded digital experience. A new “Families” page, with family-focused activity guides designed for households across the country, shares the importance of backyards, parks, school yards and other community green spaces, and presents ideas on how to foster healthy growth.
The website also integrates “TurfMutt’s Blog” on the home page, which has been an important medium for engaging consumers online. In addition, a new “Partners” page recognizes companies that actively support the program.
The TurfMutt program continues to earn accolades for its outreach efforts. The Department of Education’s Green Ribbon Schools and the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Environmental Education Program – Teacher Resources and Lessons Plans websites list the TurfMutt program as a valued educational resource.
Discovery Education and OPEI will collaborate to create a Public Service Announcement (PSA) to air in local markets and online that talks about the importance of caring for green spaces in a sustainable way. The spot will help boost awareness of TurfMutt as a desired and valued educational program, as well as a “go-to” resource for American families.
“TurfMutt has evolved into a turn-key educational program,” said Kris Kiser, president and CEO of OPEI. “By becoming a supporter and partner, OPEI member companies can help spread the word nationwide about the positive environmental impact of backyards, parks, school yards and personal green space to communities, reaching families at a fraction of the cost that an individual company would have to invest for similar brand traction.”
Supporting OPEI members can immediately access a TurfMutt digital toolkit to build their own online TurfMutt brand page, with approved logos, visuals and content.
Discovery Education and OPEI are also launching the second annual “Spruce Up Your School” sweepstakes, in which educators may enter to win a $5,000 grant to expand or develop their school’s green space. The annual national sweepstakes is aimed at K-5 educators across the country. Last year, Ms. Mary Anne Arabia’s fifth grade class from Palomar Elementary School in Chula Vista, Calif., was named the Grand Prize winner and received a $5,000 grant, which was used to plant trees and install benches in their school’s outdoor play area for much-needed shade and seating.
“The TurfMutt program has had an incredible influence and reach into schools across the country, already reaching approximately one million students since its inception in 2011,” said Mary Rollins, Discovery Education vice president. “We are pleased to continue building and expanding on this partnership alongside OPEI as we encourage students to explore their curiosity in the environment that surrounds them every day.”
Companies who support TurfMutt gain national exposure around introducing healthier, green space to communities and homes and supporting the love of nature. Contact Laura Ferry @ email@example.com to learn more about promoting the TurfMutt program through member corporate marketing channels and industry partner sponsorship opportunities. OPEI members may receive immediate access to the TurfMutt digital tool kit by contacting Kristen Reamy at firstname.lastname@example.org.
About Discovery Education
Discovery Education transforms classrooms, empowers teachers and captivates students by providing high quality, dynamic, digital content for grades K-12 and community colleges. Powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world, Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital media, professional development, assessment tools and a passionate educator network to support districts in accelerating student achievement. Discovery Education services like Discovery Education streaming, Discovery Education Techbook and Discovery Education Higher Ed, are in more than half of all US schools and 35 countries around the world. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com.
The Outdoor Power Equipment Institute (OPEI) is an international trade association representing more than 84 small engine, utility vehicle and outdoor power equipment manufacturers and suppliers worldwide. OPEI is a recognized Standards Development Organization for the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and active internationally through the International Standards Organization (ISO) in the development of safety and performance standards. For more information, visit www.OPEI.org.
About the OPEI Education & Research Foundation
The OPEI Education & Research Foundation works to develop educational materials, support research and further programs to foster environmental stewardship and an appreciation of our parks, forests, lawns and landscapes. The Foundation’s priorities revolve around environmental best practices and stewardship in the care and enjoyment of our green spaces and safety education that ensures safe and proper use of outdoor power equipment.
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