“Inspiring a Love of Science and Nature”
On the eve of his first inauguration, President Obama asked the nation to find our individual voices and champion local community causes closest to our hearts.
Closest to my heart is the environment, animals and children (not necessarily in that order).
I had been thinking of volunteering for some time, but our new leader’s speech was just the impetus I needed. I had procrastinated long enough.
Clearly the U.S. government (as has been too painfully evident for decades) couldn’t or wouldn’t do it all when it came to saving our planet. I wanted to do more than sign petitions requesting laws be passed or existing regulations enforced. I wanted to be part of the parade to educate the next generation of human beings about earth’s beauty – with the hope they will grow to cherish it, repair and preserve it for generations to come.
In my search for an organization that would touch upon each of my heartstrings I found the Environmental Volunteers – a San Francisco Bay Area organization dedicated to inspiring children to love science and nature – and ultimately our earth.
A Great Organization
Bay Area schools invite the Environmental Volunteers into their classrooms (and beyond) for subject-matter-specific sessions and outdoor activities, including field trips to local areas of interest such as Stevens Creek Park, Jaspar Ridge Preserve, and Palo Alto Baylands (which focus on local flora and fauna) and the Los Trancos Earthquake Trail (with a focus on the fascinating geology of the region). There is a minimal fee associated with these “Services”- but despite the cost, most years a waiting list develops quickly.
Usually, the Services are conducted over a ninety-minute period of time during school hours (field trips are longer, of course). In the classroom, an initial presentation is given in a large group setting. This is followed by hands-on, interactive instruction in smaller groups of 6 to 8 children where each volunteer presents a “Kit” – a game or demonstration designed to spark interest. Over the course of each Service, 3 or 4 Kits are presented. With the Service presentation and the Kits as guides, students discover first-hand how nature and the environment work. It’s fun for the children and it’s certainly fun for the volunteers.
In this series…
This is the first of a planned eight-part blog post dedicated to the Environmental Volunteers. In each post, I will concentrate on one Service – so that you will experience what the children are exposed to and the joy those bright eager young minds bring to the mix.
Join me for the second of this eight-part blog post: The Earliest Environmentalists – California’s Ohlone Tribe
Featured image is courtesy of Pixabay.com