Losing Paradise?
Featured in
Smithsonian in your Classroom Magazine

Several ASBA member artists whose work is in Losing Paradise? Endangered Plants Here and Around the World have been featured in the Spring 2011 issue of Smithsonian in your Classroom magazine and online at the Smithsonian’s educational website.

Helping to educate school children about endangered plants, this exposure is also introducing a new generation to contemporary botanical art.

The magazine is distributed free of charge to all 80,000 grade and middle schools in the country.

Stephen Binns, of the Smithsonian Center for Education, states that it is published quarterly, drawing content from the vast resources of the Smithsonian Institution.

Lesson plans included asking students to compare features of botanical illustrations, herbarium specimens, and photographs. Using the Smithsonian's Plant Conservation Unit methodology, students will also discuss the issues surrounding scientific study and endangered species, such as how to determine which species are most in need of attention.

Three of Wendy Hollender's colored pencil drawings of Hibiscus are featured on the cover of the magazine and Ingrid Finnan's Echinocactus grusonii is shown inside. The six lesson plans feature: Gillian Barlow's Gentiana pneumonanthe, Kathleen Garness' Cypripedium parviflorum, Gillian Harris' Hydrastis canadensis, Wendy Hollender's Hibiscadelphus distans, Jee Yeon Koo's Cypripedium japonicum, Julie Martinez's Zephyranthes atamasca, George Olson's Napaea dioica, and Alice Tangerini's Mortoniodendron uxpanapense.

Our collaboration with the Smithsonian has been fruitful, and the educational message of Losing Paradise? has been extended to every school district in the nation. The Smithsonian has affirmed the special value of botanical art in a digital world and is sowing seeds for a new generation of botanical artists as well as plant scientists. Along with ASBA, the Smithsonian recognizes the value of art to inspire and educate. Partnering with museum and institutions such as the Smithsonian allows us to fulfill our mission in a broader way than would otherwise be possible.

ASBA encourages teachers and artists to use these lessons in their local schools, clubs or local botanical gardens. Download the magazine below.

For more information go to: Smithsonian Education: Botany & Art and Their Roles in Conservation