In the midst of all the administrative prepping of materials, rooms, proctors, and such else needed to administer EOY tests, I’ve been a bit too preoccupied to post any of the fabulous things happening on our campus. Here are just a few, about which I’ll write more, post testing! Enjoy this glimpse of Project Monarch, and our collaboration with the Arboretum and Thermo-Fisher!
Photos below include preliminary soil sampling, by Bennett David, and a subsequent planning visit with Monarch Rescue Expert, Nina Veteto, who is advising us on which pollinators, milkweeds, and optimal locations for butterfly and pollinator plantings. Bennett’s introductory letter follows, and you’ll likely our Arboretum crew friends on campus quite frequently in the coming weeks!
Dear Ms. McDowell,My name is Bennett David. I am the Eagle Scout working with Mr. Marchal on this project. It is one of 4 conservation projects I will complete for the William T. Hornaday Conservation Program. I have loved monarchs since it was central to my Pre-K Curriculum. I also have a interest in other pollinators and plantings for birds.I spent last year working as a youth and Scout ambassador for Audubon NC. Last summer, I led a workshop to teach Scouts to build nest boxes for the vulnerable Brown-headed Nuthatch. We then gave those boxes to science teachers for them to use in their curriculum and participate in Citizen Science (the Nest Watch Program). This served as a demonstration project to instruct and encourage other groups, scouts, and other youth and adults to contribute in all the habitat states.The conservation program I am working on has 3 main components:1. Research a conservation need and potential solutions2. Conservation work – help plan, work and encourage other to participate.3. Educate and publicize the problem and solution. Examples include:– Monarch Day at NC Arboretum 9/16– Using FSI as the demonstration project to encourage Scout groups and other schools to do this. Since you are an Expeditionary School and participate in Citizen Science, FSI is the ideal example to others.So if it’s okay with you I would like to be aware of and try to attend any related educational events when possible. I would also like to be aware of any promotion to other schools. I would appreciate photos of the student participation and educational components.In addition to introducing myself, I wanted to let you know that I want to collect a soil sample to send for analysis on Monday (probably midday, after I pick up the kit from the agency office). I wanted to let you know so you would not be alarmed by someone walking around on your school campus.I look forward to making this space happen for FSI, your students and themonarchs and other supported wildlife.Sincerely, Bennett