|photo by Connie Darago
Erin Booze, Ryan Jones, Ashley Wilson and Julie Mankowski of Shady Side Elementary show off their terrapins' temporary home.
You have birthdays. Mother Earth has Earth Days. So, while you might want a Razor Scooter or a puppy for your birthday present, Mother Earth wants something else. She wants a clean, healthy planet for all of her children to live. That means backyards full of trees, bushes and rocks (perfect for hide-and-seek), tall trees for climbing (even if it's just for your pet cat), flowers for sniffing and, best of all, NO GARBAGE laying around to cut bare feet.
This Sunday, April 22, is Earth Day. What can you give to Mother Earth? Some people clean up litter from roads and rivers. Some people plant trees or flowers. Some people make houses for birds.
All over Maryland, school kids are helping Governor Glendening make Maryland a healthy place for diamondback terrapins. Diamondback terrapins are marked with diamond patterns on their shell. They are Maryland's state mascot. The University of Maryland sports teams borrow their name.
At Shady Side Elementary School, second, third and fourth graders are helping baby terrapins grow up into big turtles.
"They're pretty small, but they will get big," says second grader John Jensen. "When they're big enough, they shall be let go in the water at Parish Creek to mate."
"Now," says John, "the txerrapins live in aquariums. "The aquariums are about half full of water. There's a piece of wood they can climb up on."
These kids are making Mother Earth happy all year long. In big ways or small ways, you can help, too. On Sunday, April 22, you can plant an Earth Day sun garden at Battle Creek Cypress Swamp (see details at right). Or when you see an empty wrapper on the ground, pick it up and put it in the trash. Mother Earth will thank you for your gift!
Fun Kids Stuff
Write an Essay; Win a Prize
Maryland 7th & 8th Graders: Put on your thinking cap and contemplate peace and social justice. Anne Arundel and Montgomery counties chapters of Peace Action invite you to write a poem or rap lyrics to promote peace, justice and respect among all people. Everybody earns a certificate, and three top winners take home prizes of $100, $200 or $300.
Type and double space. Include cover sheet with your name, address, phone and e-mail. Address your entry to Peace Writing Contest; 310 Riverview Ave., Annapolis, MD 21403. Put it in the mail before May 1. Questions? 410/263-7409.
Mice Can Be Nice
Fri. April 20-Hear mouse stories, make a craft and enjoy a cheesy snack. Stories are The Mouse Who Ate Bananas and Miss Mouses Day. 10am @ Barnes & Noble, Annapolis Harbour Center: 410/573-1115.
Raggedy Anns Birthday
Tues. April 24Celebrate the birthday of Americas favorite rag doll, Raggedy Ann. Then make a card for someone special. 10am @ Barnes & Noble, Annapolis Harbour Center: 410/573-1115.
April 21 & 22; 28 & 29-Ballet Theatre of Maryland dances the story of Cinderella, who is found by her prince despite the plotting of her stepfamily. See it in Annapolis 8pm April 21, 3pm April 22 @ Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts. $24 adults; $12 students: 410/263-8289 Or see it in Brooklyn Park at the new Chesapeake Center for the Creative Arts at 7pm April 28, 3pm April 29. $26; $12 students: 410/636-6597 www.btmballet.org.
More Turtle Time
Mon. April 30-Preschoolers make a terrific turtle with pArts supplies. 10am at Zany Brainy Annapolis Harbour Center: 410/266-1447.