Amherst, MA – On June 29, 2016, Congressman Jim McGovern (D-MA) will be visiting the Hitchcock Center’s new living building site and announcing an exciting federal grant award to the Hitchcock Center from the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS). The Hitchcock Center has been awarded a $148,586 IMLS grant for its innovative “Learning From Nature” exhibit design plan that will capture the interpretive potential of its artifacts and objects, its outdoor spaces, and built environment as portals into knowledge, feelings, and actions.
By Amy Porter for The Westfield News
RUSSELL – The children at Russell Elementary School have been getting to know their new environment close-up this spring with the help of naturalist Ted Watt and a $5,000 STARS grant (Students and Teachers Working with Artists, Scientists and Scholars) from the Massachusetts Cultural Council. Watt is an environmental educator with the Hitchcock Center for the Environment in Amherst. His program helps children and adults understand the unique habitats and ecosystems of New England through hands-on instruction and mentorship.
Science and Children
At our school students are accustomed to learning in informal, outdoor settings. We identify food webs, follow animal tracks in the woodland across the street, and harvest pumpkins from our school garden. For the last several years our garden has offered students new perspectives about what they are eating.
We sat quietly in the forest, swatting mosquitoes and listening intently to the many species of birds singing in the trees around us. Sarah carefully pressed the button on the boom box, broadcasting the breeding call of the male black-throated blue warbler. Within seconds, Kevin focused his binoculars above us and whispered excitedly, “There he is!”