I’m a Bear Smart Kid! Schools Program

Park ElementaryBear Smart Durango initiated an educational “I’m a Bear Smart Kid!” program for elementary school classrooms in 2011. Educator Katie Maloney was contracted to develop the curriculum and provide Be Bear Smart classroom presentations.

In 2012, wildlife biologist Cindy Lawrence was contracted to revise the curriculum and provide 50-minute Be Bear Smart classroom presentations for elementary schools. Curriculum revisions placed more focus on residents avoiding conflicts with bears.

The first half of the classroom presentations addresses bears in the wild, the second half on human-bear conflict, with a hands-on intermission including a stuffed bear cub, bear hide, bear skulls and claws, dried bear scat and laminated photos.



In 2013, a summer program was added that addressed bears, human-bear conflict, and camping and recreating in bear country. See a photo gallery of this program.








“The Needham Elementary second grade team utilizes the education outreach program provided by Bear Smart Durango every year to enhance our inquiries into animal dependence on healthy habitats for survival.  The interactive lessons presented as a part of the “I’m a Bear Smart Kid” program provide information for kids on living with bears in Durango and the lessons fit perfectly with our Colorado state standards.  I feel that reaching out to our younger Durango residents might be the most important contribution of Bear Smart Durango in order to set up a good future for all of our wildlife neighbors.”  –  Alan Morris, Needham Elementary


I’m a Bear Smart Kid! Program Materials