Fascinating Frogs and Toads returns to Van Hoosen Farm

Stephanie Sokol for The Oakland Press

Adults and children 5 and older can learn about Michigan-native amphibians at the second annual “Fascinating Frogs and Toads.”

The event is 1-2:30 p.m. Saturday, May 18, at Van Hoosen Farm’s Rochester Hills Museum.

“This program is a family-friendly event, to introduce the differences between frogs and toads, because Michigan has both,” said Patrick Endres, Rochester Hills Museum staff assistant. “I’m going to explain the way to tell the difference between them, as well as the benefits of having frogs in an ecosystem.”

Part of Rochester Hills Museum’s summer environmental programs, the event will teach children and adults about these native amphibians through a lecture, craft and hike in the woods.

“It’s been shown in research that giving kids a direct experience with nature helps them cognitively learn, and gives them a better appreciation of the nature around them,” Endres said.

Frogs are an indicator species, meaning they help humans to judge pollutant levels on the land and water, Endres said.

He said introducing children to nature at an early age will make them aware and knowledgeable about the environment, to help future generations as well. He also wants to promote Michigan conservation efforts among all people.

Programs such as Frog Watch USA and groups through the Michigan Department of National Resources allow people to act as citizen scientists who reporting findings on frog and toad life for studies.

“It gets kids outdoors and that’s something I’m really passionate about — getting kids outdoors and not in front of a TV screen or a game station, because I personally saw the benefit myself of growing up outside,” Endres said.

Rochester Hills Museum members can attend this event for free. Nonmember admission for adults is $5, $3 for seniors, children and students.

The museum hosts many family-friendly events throughout the summer. To find out more about this and other programs, visit www.rochesterhills.org/musprogram.

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