An innovative outdoor science program created with three library directors in Southeastern Massachusetts.
I worked with the public libraries in Marion, Mattapoisett, and Rochester and other area experts to plan a year-long program called “My Own BackYard” (MOBY). MOBY™ connects students in grades 3-8 to science and nature exploration in our tri-town "backyards" and encourages them to become citizen scientists while enjoying fun activities.
Highlights of MOBY include:
- “Bees and Bogs” kick-off event in October 2014. October 5th featured BEE INFORMED, a group from the Bristol County Beekeepers. Attendees observed a teaching hive and learned how bees pollinate the bogs and make honey. They also tasted honey and products from Ocean Spray Cranberry Company. The cranberry harvest and industry was further explored at a cranberry bog on Saturday, October 18th. Students and their families toured the bogs and sorting barn during harvest.
- 50 “Explorer Backpacks” available for check out from the 3 libraries on a variety of nature subjects. Students can learn how to tap real maple syrup, identity animal tracks, and certify a vernal pool. Students will collect data, make observations, and record findings. Necessary supplies and suggested fun activities will be included.
- Programs focused on ecosystems in our area. Participants will explore using science, technology, engineering, arts and math (educators call this STEAM). Expect presentations, field explorations, and hands-on activities.
- A SNOW MOB (at each library) as soon as the white stuff flies. Build snow creations and study snow crystals.
- STARGAZING with the Buzzards Bay Coalition on Friday, January 16th from 7-8 pm at the Mattapoisett Reserve.
- The Great American Backyard Bird Count on February 13-16th.
- Upcoming programs that allow students to meet experts and scientists who can serve as mentors and inspire students toward potential careers.
MOBY™ was funded by the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners with Federal LSTA funds. The year-long project began in October.