On Friday, April 24th, 20 children and 7 adults from Accomack County met at the Foodbank of the Eastern Shore to learn about and plant native species in the Foodbank’s garden. Families discussed the symbiotic relationship between birds and native plant species and learned about the work that the Foodbank does for the community. They planted five beds of natives including milkweed and rosemallow, and students were given their own seeds and growing guides to take home. This event is one of many held by Chincoteague Bay Field Station’s Shore People Advancing Readiness for Knowledge (SPARK) program. SPARK is a family-based educational program that emphasizes inter-generational and place-based learning techniques. SPARK promotes that idea that learning is fun and that the environment serves as a starting block for training families in literacy and math skills. This spring the Field Station was awarded a Celebrate Urban Birds mini grant from Cornell Lab of Ornithology, which funds events that allow students and families to become investigators of their local environments and to collect high-quality data about how different environments will influence the location of birds in urban areas.
Special thanks to Alexis Votteler, Community Garden Coordinator, for introducing us to the Foodbank's garden!
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