Junior Ranger programs are an awesome way to learn more about the environment, our parks, and history. The National Parks Junior Ranger motto sums it up perfectly, “Explore! Learn! Protect!” Junior Rangers earn badges by talking with a park ranger, after completing activity booklets that help them connect with nature and history. In addition to National Junior Ranger Programs, almost all of the individual National Parks have their own special activities that allow Junior Rangers to earn souvenir badges. In Georgia, Junior Rangers can even earn badges with the state parks program. Beyond the listed resources for nationwide & Georgia-specific Junior Ranger booklets, you’ll find some National Site & State Park Junior Ranger events happening this summer.
Nationwide Junior Ranger Activity Books
These free, printable booklets are great to have around when the kids start asking questions about random things!
Junior Archaeologist Activity Booklet (PDF) This one comes with a handy parents guide (PDF)! Here at HTWT Headquarters, I’ve posted the instructions to make a homemade dig kit that might come in handy with this.
Junior Paleontologist Activity Booklet (PDF) Digging up some fun is never easier than contributing to children’s passions! Learn how fossils were formed. This is another activity booklet that might go well with the homemade dig kit.
Junior Astronomer Activity Booklet (PDF) This is a great printable to have on a camping trip away from the city lights. Who isn’t inspired by stargazing?
Wilderness Explorers Activity Booklet (PDF) Jam-packed full of learning and activities for the wild ones.
Underwater Explorers Activity Booklet (PDF) Learn new things about aquatic life. Great to have for a trip to the beach.
Underground Railroad: Network to Freedom (PDF) A great way to learn about the Underground Railroad.
Georgia’s National Parks Junior Ranger Activity Booklets
These Georgia specific National Parks, Monuments, and sites make special Junior Ranger activity booklets & badges available.
Andersonville National Historic Site & National Prisoner of War Museum – Innovative activity book titled, “Captured! A Prisoner of War Story,” follows the challenging experience of an Andersonville prisoner. The booklet is only available at this location. Don’t forget to pick one up when visiting this historic site.
Appalachian National Scenic Trail – While the three booklets aren’t specifically Georgia-related, the southern terminus of the world famous trail is in the Northeast Georgia Mountains. This guide comes in handy on an east coast road trip, as it covers locations in Virginia, West Virginia, and New Jersey.
Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area – Learn about the history of the Chattahoochee River, identify plants and animals, as well as find out ways to help preserve this area while earning the Junior Ranger badge.
Cumberland Island National Seashore – This activity booklet saved us when our camp faced an afternoon of rain showers. Junior Rangers learn about the native wildlife and history of the island.
Fort Frederica National Monument – This award-winning Junior Ranger program is funded by the Fort Frederica Association. Children use a variety of props and a colorful pop-up book to learn about the area. This is also a great place to add to the Junior Archeology Activity Booklet.
Fort Pulaski National Monument – Pick up an activity booklet at this historic site to make the most out of your visit!
Jimmy Carter National Historic Site – Learning about President Carter and the National Park Service will earn a special badge for Junior Rangers.
Martin Luther King, Jr National Historic Site – Earn this badge by completing the activity booklet and agreeing to live by the Junior Ranger Promise & Dr. King’s Six Principles of Nonviolence.
Ocmulgee National Monument – In addition to learn about the Native American way of life that led to the creation of the earthen mounds, this park also participates in the Junior Civil War Historian badge.
Georgia’s National Parks Junior Ranger Events Summer 2015
6/3, 6/10, 6/17, 6/24 Ocmulgee National Monument – Every Wednesday in June, children come to Ocmulgee Indian Mounds to learn about the Native Americans who lived here. Learn how to make Native American pottery & play the games they used to play. Includes a one-mile hike to the Great Temple Mound.
6/6, 6/7, 6/20, 6/21, 6/27, 6/28 Ocmulgee National Monument – This craft project teaches kids how to make coiled Native American pottery & paint necklaces.
6/14, 6/27, 6/28 Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park – A great day to earn the Junior Ranger badge for this historic site because there will be artillery demonstrations at 11AM, 12PM, 2Pm & 3PM
6/15, 6/16, 6/17, 6/18 Fort Frederica Archaeology Summer Camp – There isn’t much info posted on this special event, but there is a contact. Check it out if you have Junior Rangers interested in Archaeology.
6/20 Chickamauga & Chattanooga National Military Park – Meet at 9:30AM for an educational bike ride though Chickamauga Battlefield.
6/20 Chickamauga & Chattanooga National Military Park – Celebration of the 150th anniversary of Juneteenth and the permanent abolition of slavery. Add this event to the Underground Railroad Activity Booklet!
6/26, 7/17 – Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park – On Artful Fridays, children 3+ create art masterpieces while learning about history. Please make reservations by clicking the link.
Georgia State Parks Junior Ranger Days & Camps Summer 2015
June 3-5 Fort Yargo State Park – Space is limited so pre-register for this camp that includes tons of outdoor recreation like hiking, archery, fishing and more. There will also be a living history presentation with actors in costume. $75
June 15-18 Indian Springs State Park – Register for this fun day camp experience learning about history, nature and animals. Enjoy a family-friendly get together on the last day to celebrate International Picnic Day. $40
June 17-19 Fort Yargo State Park – Space is limited so pre-register for this camp that includes tons of outdoor recreation like hiking, archery, fishing and more. There will also be a living history presentation with actors in costume. $75
June 22-25 Kolomoki Mounds State Park – Pre-register for this four-day camp where children participate in outdoor activities and learn more about nature and wildlife. $70