Born Learning Trail

Born Learning Trail

Trail promotes early childhood learning, physical activity and family fun

United Way of Adams County Born Learning Trail

Five community partners have joined forces to build a “Born Learning Trail” on the south side of Adams Memorial Hospital, giving parents and caregivers a new, fun kid-friendly destination—and one that incorporates learning and physical activity at the same time.

Partners in the Born Learning project include United Way of Adams County, Adams County Winning With Wellness, Adams Memorial Hospital, Purdue Extension, and Decatur-Adams County Parks and Recreation.

More on the trail
The Born Learning Trail, located on the Adams Memorial Hospital walking trail, consists of 10 interactive signs and learning activities that adults can use to engage young children. For instance, along the trail, kids can play hopscotch, compare shapes, practice their numbers, tell stories or make up silly songs.

“Winning With Wellness has been planning this trail for some time,” said Nancy Manuel, Extension Educator, Purdue Extension-Adams County. “We purchased the Born Learning signage with funds from a Purdue Extension childhood obesity grant, and additional partners have generously supplied building materials, including United Way and Decatur-Adams County Parks and Recreation.”

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Click the image above to view photos from the Born Learning Trail Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony held October 8, 2015.

United Way of Adams County Executive Director Mari Sanders explained that the trail gets its name because research shows that children are literally “born learning.”

“Think of it. Before a child ever enters kindergarten, five years of education takes place. We know that what happens in a child’s early years matters for success in life and school readiness, so we want to help parents, grandparents and caregivers use everyday outings – including trips to the Born Learning Trail – to support that learning.”

Sanders added that the long-term plan of United Way is to construct another Born Learning Trail in Berne and Geneva.

“Winning With Wellness sees this trail as a community change strategy,” said Diana Macklin, WWW chair and Worthman Fitness Center director.

“It’s a great way for the hospital and our community to use outdoor space to boost children’s language and literacy skills, encourage everyday learning moments, and draw families to the trail to get outside and be active. We trust that the Born Learning Trail will help our community do even more to get kids off to the right start.”

For more information on the Born Learning Trail project, contact Diana Macklin at 260-724-2145, extension 1537.

About Winning With Wellness
Adams County Winning With Wellness consists of a cross-section of community leaders whose mission is to raise awareness of and encourage involvement in the many wellness opportunities within Adams County. To learn more, visit or find us on Facebook.