Conserve Wildlife Blog

Posts Tagged ‘Education Programs’

2017 SPECIES ON THE EDGE ART & ESSAY CONTEST AWARD CEREMONY

Tuesday, June 6th, 2017

Fifth graders from across New Jersey recognized for their talent and conservation advocacy

On Thursday, June 1, Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey and sponsors PSEG, New Jersey Education Association, Church & Dwight, GAF, and ShopRite celebrated and recognized the winners of the 2017 Species on the Edge Art & Essay Contest at the NJEA building in Trenton, New Jersey.

 

CWF Founder Linda Tesauro with Middlesex County winner Joanne Bennet

NJEA Executive Director Ed Richardson, CWF Executive Director David Wheeler, and CWF Education Director Stephanie D’Alessio welcomed over 200 students, family members, teachers, and school staff. Mercer County Wildlife Center provided two big brown bats for visitors to admire up close.

 

Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey has created an ESRI Story Map to highlight the contest winners. The Story Map can be accessed here.

Kim Scarborough of PSEG presents award to Atlantic County winner Ethan Mitnick.

 

 

Every year this STEAM-based contest enables 5th grade students to advocate for an endangered or threatened species from New Jersey through a well-researched, creative essay and original art piece. Artwork and essays are submitted from across the state and assembled by county.

Mercer County winner Emma Phelan

 

 

 

 

Our panel of judges, including CWF Senior wildlife biologist Todd Pover, renowned artist James Fiorentino, Species On The Edge founder Linda Tesauro, and PSEG licensing project manager Claudia Rocca, had quite the challenge in admiring and assessing the over 2,500 submissions this year, in the 13th year of the contest.

 

First and second place winners were selected from each of New Jersey’s 21 counties. The winners were presented with certificates during the awards ceremony. In addition to receiving a $50 gift card to ShopRite, each will be invited to a one-of-a-kind opportunity to take an ecotour of Sedge Island. Now members of the Circle of Winners Club, these students will be presented with many cool and exciting opportunities to continue to keep wildlife not only in New Jersey’s future, but theirs as well.

 

2017 SPECIES ON THE EDGE ART & ESSAY CONTEST WINNERS REPRESENTED ON NEW STORY MAP

A Story Map is an interactive map which allows the user to click on icons to see participating schools, winners from each county, and honorable mention entries. Scrolling through the text on the left side changes the content of the points on the map. A click on each map point brings up more information, like the number of classes from each school that submitted an entry. While scrolling through the list of winners, users can even click on the schools’ icons to bring up the students’ names, essays, and artwork.

The format of this story map is simple and easy to use, allowing for an interesting, interactive way to display the hard work of students across New Jersey.

 

Congratulations to all winners! Thank you to all of our sponsors!

 

 

 

 

 

First Trip to the Beach for Newark Students

Wednesday, July 29th, 2015
50 Fifth Grade Students from Ann Street School in Newark Visit Island Beach State Park

by Lindsay McNamara, Communications Manager 

Ann Street School students taking a "shellfie" on the beach.

Ann Street School students taking a “shellfie” on the beach.

Remember the awe and wonder of your first visit to the beach? For many fifth graders from Newark, they experienced just that feeling this summer thanks to Conserve Wildlife Foundation (CWF) and PSEG.

 

Through CWF’s WILDCHILD program, over 50 fifth grade students from Ann Street School in Newark spent a day at Island Beach State Park and learned more about nature and human impact on New Jersey’s wildlife and environment.

 

The Ann Street School students were thrilled at the sight of an active osprey nest, observed through a spotting scope, as CWF’s Habitat Program Manager and osprey expert Ben Wurst detailed the amazing ongoing recovery of New Jersey’s osprey population. The students also went on guided maritime forest hikes, toured the Island Beach State Park Nature Center, and connected their everyday actions to the larger environment.

 

“There is nothing quite as evocative and inspiring for a child as spending a day at the seashore, feeling the sand under your feet with the tangy fragrances of salt marsh and surf,” said David Wheeler, CWF Executive Director. “This connection with nature, and chance to experience the abundant wildlife of Island Beach — from red foxes to horseshoe crabs to black skimmers — can help our next generation of outdoor leaders become engaged with the natural world around us.”

 

Island Beach State Park interpretive staff led enlightening programs on the beach, where many students collected shells and walked in the sand for the first time in their lives. Interpretive staff also took the Ann Street School students seining on Barnegat Bay, where they dragged a large seine net out into the bay. Students got to hold mud snails, minnows and hermit crabs, and microorganisms in learning firsthand about the marine life in Barnegat Bay.

 

“The visit to Island Beach State Park is a culminating experience for my students. They spend the year researching and learning more about wildlife for the Species on the Edge Art and Essay Contest, and then the trip brings it all together. The trip is where they can see the different ecosystems and animals that we have talked about throughout the year,” stated Sharon Cardoso, Ann Street School Teacher. “The students look forward to WILDCHILD, it is an incentive for them and they are motivated to keep their grades up so they can attend.”

 

The WILDCHILD program is made possible by generous support from PSEG.

 

“The students involved in WILDCHILD traditionally do not have the opportunity to have access to green space. PSEG works with organizations like Conserve Wildlife Foundation to help engage children in environmental education,” said Russ Furnari, Manager, Environmental policy, PSEG. “Through the support of the PSEG Foundation, we work with Conserve Wildlife Foundation to help get kids out into nature to learn about endangered species and that teach them to protect nature and protect the environment.”

 

Learn more:

 

Lindsay McNamara is the Communications Manager for Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey.

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