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Through Exploration we will Bloom. Nature is Open

March 20, 2020

Update from the Mather Field Vernal Pools 

In this challenging time of change and turbulence, nature still runs its awe-inspiring course and is open to all. As we all enter this new and uncharted chapter together, we mustn’t forget the healing and spirit-stimulating power of the natural world. Take time during this process to get outside, breathe, connect with something and feel humbled by nature’s resilience and mastery of adapting to drastic change. Like the field of Frying Pan Poppies that bounced back after a prescribed burn (pictured below), we too will recover from this and blossom.

At the Illa Collin Preserve in Mather, flowers are popping up after the most substantial rainfall in weeks hit the region. Sprinkles of yellow, orange, pink, purple and white light up the grasslands, and grow more dense and vibrant with each day that passes. Many of our favorite flower friends have already arrived, like Frying Pan Poppies, Butter and Eggs, Field Owls Clover, Popcorn Flower, Goldfields, Wolly Baskets, White-tipped Clover, Checkerbloom, Fremont’s Tidy Tips and even the elusive Vernal Pool Monkeyflower. 

The much needed rain also filled several of the shallower vernal pools – something we were waiting for all winter long. Beautiful reflections of cloudy skies can be seen, clear as day, in the water. We will have to wait and see if any of the vernal pool invertebrates, larvae or crustaceans decide to hatch and make it through their short life cycles in the coming weeks. 

Let the natural world teach us all

Prior to school closures and sequestration measures, Splash students were having a blast during their field trips. They oohed when they came face-to-face with the critters they had been studying in school for the very first time. Out in the field, groups laid on the grassy ground to see if they could hear a vole scurrying through its underground tunnel, peered at a pair of Red-tailed Hawks through binoculars, and made guesses as to why beavers build dams as they studied one that had been recently built. 

Splash field guides are now reminiscing on these grand times spent with Sacramento youth. Although we are not all together in person at this time, we encourage children of all ages to get outside, at least once a day, and find solace in the great outdoor classroom. 

Curriculum Corner 

Let us help you! For the past 20 years, Sacramento Splash has been at the forefront of training teachers who have told us teaching science is intimidating! We can only imagine how so many parents are feeling now that they are thrust into being their child’s primary teacher. Splash is here to help! We want to deliver some fun hands-on science curriculum that you can do right in your own backyard, or by taking a short field trip. The wonders of nature and science are so much fun to teach when you have the tools. Let Curriculum Corner be that tool box for you! 

We intend to use our newsletter and social media channels to release simple and fun lessons bi-weekly along with updates from the Mather habitat. Stay tuned and please check in or reach out anytime. We are here for you! Let’s continue to help children understand and value our natural world, TOGETHER! 

Get started now, we have put together our first lesson on learning the parts of a flower. Click here for the lesson.

Stay safe and healthy, everyone. Thinking of, and wishing the best to, our beloved Splash community. Reach out to us at events@sacsplash.org anytime! 

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