Connecting People with Nature
Northeast Region
 

Fun Wildflower ID Book Gets Kids Outside

SPARK participants, author and CNWR staff pose with the finished book.
SPARK participants, author and CNWR staff pose with the finished book.

Article Written by Refuge Intern Katherine Goerger

On Friday, July 13th, a group of thirty gathered in the Herbert H. Bateman Educational and Administrative Center for a very special event. Local resident, Matt Cormons, unveiled his new book, Wildflowers of the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge, a user-friendly field guide to the wildflowers of this unique habitat.

The book was created in collaboration with the Refuge, the Chincoteague Natural History Association (CNHA), the Eastern Shore Community College Foundation, and the Shore People Advancing Readiness for Knowledge (SPARK) program.

The young ones in attendance, that day, were the guests of honor.  Each was featured in the book’s photographs and was one of the first to receive an “official copy” of the finished product. 

That same day, the SPARK children and guests were invited to board the refuge’s hay wagon for a tour of the Wildlife Loop, where Mr. Cormons found and introduced many of the flowers that appear within the guide. The hay wagon provided a wonderful opportunity to see the wildflowers up close and experience the area firsthand.  All in attendance enjoyed and were engaged in the experience, representing the book’s ultimate goal: awakening people of all ages to the natural bounty found at the refuge.

Mr. Cormons and guests examine wildflowers along the Wildlife Loop.
Mr. Cormons and guests examine wildflowers along the Wildlife Loop.

The new book was written primarily for the “Children in the Woods” day camp participants.  Although geared towards 3rd to 6th graders, the book is full of botanical information that older children and interested adults will find useful and enhancing to their experience at the refuge. 

Wildflowers of the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge examines over 65 species of flowers visitors are likely to see in the area.  It contains over 150 color photos to make identification simple and fun.  Accompanying most of the featured flowers are informative rhymes and additional facts given by the book’s own guide, Flutter (a characterized version of an actual species of butterfly found at the refuge). 

The affordable paperback is highly recommended to people of all ages interested in wildflowers and exploring the wonders of the refuge and is now available in the CNHA bookstore.

 *SPARK (Shore People Advancing Readiness for Knowledge), is a family-learning program using nature as a “springboard” to advance learning. 

Katherine Goerger is a student at University of Delaware

Last updated: September 14, 2012
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