The MRCA cordially invites you to celebrate the First Graduating Class of Junior Rangers, Wetland Unit! Not only is this the first wetland unit, but this unit conducted their training at the Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve. They’ll be sworn in by a MRCA Ranger at a ceremony located in the wetlands near Gordon’s Market. Thank you to the California State Coastal Conservancy who made the wetland unit curriculum possible, as well as the education partners, The Friends of Ballona Wetlands, Audubon Society and the Santa Monica Bay Restoration Commission, who helped bring the curriculum to life.
The MRCA Junior Ranger Program
The MRCA’s Junior Ranger Program is a 10 lesson program, which introduces youth to natural and cultural resources, basic outdoor skills, community service, team building, and leadership skills. An MRCA Naturalist leads this weekly program, building consistent relationships with each participant, while visiting MRCA Rangers assist with topics in their area of expertise. Each lesson uses interactive activities and games to reinforce the topic of the day, while encouraging teamwork and cooperation amongst each other.
The Wetland Unit Description
Located in the largest coastal wetland in the Santa Monica Bay, Ballona Wetlands, this unit had a chance to see the wetlands behind the scenes and in action. As they watched the changing water dynamics and many birds and wildlife of the unique ecosystem, they not only became skilled in outdoor activities but also utilized critical thinking as they discussed how the many uses of the wetland can be balanced. With partner organizations these Junior Rangers also examined and participated in some of the science that goes on in this environment. When graduation day arrives, this unit of Junior Rangers will be prepared to face outdoor challenges from identifying a local bird to diverse environmental issues.