Friday, January 17, 2014

Arbor Day Poster Contest

Every year the Thomasville Garden Club selects a school from which to invite children to participate in their Arbor Day Poster Contest. This year they chose *drum roll* HOMESCHOOLERS, grades K-3rd, in Thomas and neighboring counties.
There are even prizes! $15 for 1st place in each grade and $25 for the overall winner.

Here are some tips from the TGC:
Poster Tips  

1. A good poster has a bold and simple design.  
2. Its message is easily understood, and is delivered both in picture and in text.  
3. Try providing paper to children in order to initiate the program.  
4. Posters will be judged 20 percent each for: originality, design, slogan, artwork, and overall effectiveness of the message.  

Poster Ideas 

Have students think about how useful trees are for our community, our animal friends and for having fun.   

Many animals, such as birds, squirrels, raccoons and a variety of insects, spend much of their lives in trees. These animals are born in trees, live in trees, raise their young in trees and seldom come down to the ground. Trees provide them shelter from the weather and from enemies. Trees provide food in the form of fruits, nuts, leaves, bark, and roots. Even dead trees provide shelter and food for many insects. 

Many types of trees provide food for people too. Apples, pears, peaches and cherries come from trees, as do nuts like walnuts and hazelnuts. Trees make our world a nicer place. Image your neighborhood without trees. Parks and campgrounds would certainly not be the same without trees. We all love the sight of trees. 

The quality of our environment - the air, soil and water - depends on the roles trees play. Trees help create rain as they expel moisture into the atmosphere: their roots draw it from the soil and their leaves return it to the air. Trees clean the air we breathe by taking in carbon dioxide through the leaves and then giving off oxygen we need to breathe. If trees didn't breathe, neither could we. Roots help hold soil in place to prevent erosion which not only saves soil, but also keeps our waterways cleaner. You may have observed that water is usually cleaner when there is an abundance of trees. Trees provide shade in the summer to help cool our homes. In the winter, they block wind to help warm our homes. 

Then there is fun.  Climbing trees, swinging in tire swings, adventures under trees hiding from our friends and having a picnic in the shade of a tree. 

There are many ways to express how trees are useful other than cutting down and using it for lumber.   

Poster Rules  
1. All poster entrees must be sponsored by a local Garden Club.  
2. Posters must feature trees. 
3. Arbor Day posters must include the theme: Trees – How Useful They Can Be. 
4. Each entry should be 12 x 18 inches in size  (large construction paper is ideal for this). 
5. Materials that can be used include: crayons, markers, poster paints, water colors, etc. The choice of paper is up to the child.  
6. No three-dimensional posters, computer scanned, or electronically generated images will be accepted.  
7. Check for spelling.  Posters with misspelled words will be disqualified. 
8. Put the following information on the back of the poster in the lower-right corner: The artist’s name and grade.  If it is permissible, please include the teacher’s name, and the address, phone number, and email address for the artist and/or their parent or guardian. Be cautious if using a dark marker as it may show through. This information may be either written directly on the back of the poster or written on a separate sheet of paper that is then pasted in place.  
9. Posters are to be completed by individual student. 
10. Deadline is February 5, 2014 to the Thomasville Garden Club, Inc. representative 

What is Arbor Day? 

The first Arbor Day took place on April 10, 1872 in Nebraska. It was the brainchild of Julius Sterling Morton (1832-1902), a Nebraska journalist and politician originally from Michigan. Throughout his long and productive career, Morton worked to improve agricultural techniques in his adopted state and throughout the United States when he served as President Grover Cleveland's Secretary of Agriculture. But his most important legacy is Arbor Day.

Morton felt that Nebraska's landscape and economy would benefit from the wide-scale planting of trees. He set an example himself planting orchards, shade trees and wind breaks on his own farm and he urged his neighbors to follow suit. Morton's real opportunity, though, arrived when he became a member of Nebraska's state board of agriculture. He proposed that a special day be set aside dedicated to tree planting and increasing awareness of the importance of trees. 

Nebraska's first Arbor Day was an amazing success. More than one million trees were planted. A second Arbor Day took place in 1884 and the young state made it an annual legal holiday in 1885, using April 22nd to coincide with Morton's birthday.

In the years following that first Arbor Day, Morton's idea spread beyond Nebraska with Kansas, Tennessee, Minnesota and Ohio all proclaiming their own Arbor Days. Today all 50 states celebrate Arbor Day with Georgia being the third Friday in February. At the federal level, in 1970, President Richard Nixon proclaimed the last Friday in April as National Arbor Day. Arbor Day is also now celebrated in other countries including Australia. Variations are celebrated as 'Greening Week' of Japan, 'The New Year's Days of Trees' in Israel, 'The Tree-loving Week' of Korea, 'The Reforestation Week' of Yugoslavia, 'The Students' Afforestation Day' of Iceland and 'The National Festival of Tree Planting' in India. Julius Sterling Morton would be proud. Sometimes one good idea can make a real difference.

For the homeowner, Arbor Day is an excellent opportunity to take stock of the trees on your property and plan for the future. Inspect your trees. Note any broken branches or evidence of disease or insect infestation. Think about how planting new trees might improve the look of your property or provide wind or heat protection. Take a trip to your local nursery to see what's available and to get new ideas. Walk around your neighborhood. Are there any public areas where tree planting or tree maintenance might make a real difference to your community? Talk with your neighbors. Find out what their opinions are. And, oh yes, plant a tree.

Thomasville Garden Club, Inc. Representative: 

Mary Tomlinson 
Arbor Day Poster Chairman 
Telephone:  229/226-6649 (Home) 
229/403-6046 (Cell) 

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