The Junior Botanist Program was initiated in 1997 by Wendy Dreskin who was at that time the education chair for the Marin chapter of the CNPS. Wildcare now runs this program and currently has six schools participating.
WildCare’s Junior Botanist Program introduces students to native trees, ferns, flowers and grasses. Starting at Kindergarten level, students learn five trees and their cones/seeds/acorns, four ferns, ten flowers and six grasses. The number increases at each grade level, through Eighth Grade. At the end of each learning level, the students are awarded a Junior Botanist certificate.
Plants are the basis of the food web, and threats to them impact all animals. When non-native plants replace native plants, many animal species lose a valuable food source. This is especially devastating to the many endangered species of the Bay Area.
How does it work?
A volunteer comes to a Marin classroom in the fall and introduces the program to the students. Lessons are taught throughout the school year by the classroom teacher with the help of study kits. This program is free to teachers with an $85.00 fully refundable deposit.
Download the Junior Botanist Study Kits below.