Opening Words from Sun. November 17 by Ann Eggebrecht

Good morning. I am ann eggebrecht and I want to tell you about litzsinger road ecology center.

I am a volunteer at Litzsinger Road Ecology Center which is a 34-acre property in Ladue, owned and funded by a family foundation and managed by the Missouri Botanical Garden.

As a volunteer, I work with children who visit with their school groups to be in nature and to learn about nature during three different seasons. Imagine yourself as a curious 6-year old, going to Deer Creek and discovering a turtle, picking up a crawdad, or discovering a fossil. As the 2-hour visit progresses, the students may touch the rough-leafed prairie cup plant and find evidence of other prairie plants and insects in the prairie. In the forest, there are sassafras, oak, hickory, and walnut trees, hidden centipedes, and a huge downed sycamore tree to climb on.

The teachers who bring their students to Litzsinger have participated in a training program on “place based education”, which emphasizes that students need opportunities to learn outside the classroom, and that most all students love to be in nature.

Once, there was a student who, at the beginning of the visit, declared that she did not like nature at all, but then, by the end of the visit said that she had learned a lot and felt more comfortable being outside.

As a volunteer, I like learning with the students and providing an opportunity for these children to experience nature. And we get to wear orange!

NOTE: The ideas and opinions in this post do not necessarily express the thoughts or opinions of the Ethical Society of St. Louis or its leadership.