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Darlene and Ken Fiske Memorial Birds in the Classroom Grants

Dear Teacher,

Birds can be a dynamic and engaging portal for teaching STEM subjects as well as social studies, physical education, and more.


McHenry County Audubon offers up to $500.00 in grants to accredited McHenry County Schools and/or Classrooms (grades K – 12) for the purpose of furthering the understanding and appreciation of local bird species and their habitat needs – in our county and beyond.


Projects that may be considered include, but are not limited to:

  • Bird feeding stations

  • Bird-friendly plants for schoolyard habitat enhancement

  • Interpretive signage for schoolyard habitat

  • Binoculars

  • Bird books

  • Curricular materials

  • Audio-visual materials

  • Partnership building with schools in “our” birds’ wintering grounds

  • Transportation funding for bird-related field trips, etc…

  • Other ideas?


Applications may be found here.


The McHenry County Audubon Birds in the Classroom Grants are named in memory of MCA founder Darlene Fiske and her husband Ken who was an integral player in conservation efforts in McHenry County. The Fiskes' legacy has wings with McHenry County Audubon! Donations are always welcome to ensure grants will be available for years. Please consider a donation in their name to support this amazing program!


Past Darlene & Ken Fiske Birds in the Classroom Grant Recipients:


  • Special Education District of McHenry County, Woodstock --  Olcott Prairie Project

  • Olson Elementary, Woodstock --  Birdwatching Stations


  • Spring Grove Elementary, Spring Grove -- Community Garden Project (two grants)

  • Heineman Middle School, Algonquin -- Ecology Club Garden

  • Verda Dierzen Early Learning Center, Woodstock -- Green Space


  • Alexander Leigh Center for Autism, McHenry -- Bird Friendly Habitat

  • Spring Grove Elementary School, Spring Grove -- Rain Garden

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