The most wonderful thing happened to me at the Missouri Environmental Education Association (MEEA) mini-conference yesterday. I walked away from the event with the most amazing book; it is a compilation of educational lessons and activities about the Upper Mississippi River. Erin Hilligoss-Volkmann of the Army Corps of Engineers gave a presentation, and I was one of the lucky ones to receive one of three copies she brought along. I asked her if I could post some things about the book on my blog, and she said, “Yes.”
This book is the manifestation in the physical realm of what I have been envisioning in my mind as it relates the Missouri River. Only it goes way beyond what I imagined possible. It is complete, thorough, comprehensive, beautifully illustrated, and bursting with amazing science and social studies lessons and activities. I’d say the book is somewhat like a dream-come-true, and gives my trip a rich new perspective.
Well deserved kudos go out to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps), the Navigation and Ecosystem Sustainability Program (NESP) Cultural Resources and Stewardship Mitigation Team in La Crosse, WI, and design team led by Formations.
This book is given to facilitators at a workshop in which they are trained to train teachers to teach students about the upper Mississippi River. Here are the titles to the units:
Unit 1 Introduction to the Upper Mississippi River Watershed
Unit 2 Introduction to Upper Mississippi River Ecosystems
Unit 3 Introduction to Mississippi River History and Culture
Unit 4 Introduction to the Mississippi River at Work
Unit 5 Introduction to A Shared Resource – Our Mississippi River
Here’s a peak at some of the activities:
Content includes activities relating to river habitats, glacial history, plants, animals, and habitats of the Upper Miss, bird migration, endangered species, Mississippi’s ancient civilizations, Native Americans, settlement and transportation, Underground Railroad, watershed occupations, steam power, Mark Twain, Lewis and Clark, floods, locks, dams, water safety, and caring for the river, among many other subjects. The book even includes profiles of people important to the river today, such as Michael Clark and his Big Muddy Adventures.
To be honest, I am quite speechless as I look through this treasure chest of river education tools. Seems reasonable and logical to have a complimentary Missouri River resource such as this, full of riches much finer than gold.
Ahhh, the possibilities!