Annual Give Wildlife a Chance Poster Contest

The 2017 statewide winners were announced in May. See the winning posters on Flickr.


Attention, K–5 Teachers!

The Georgia Department of Natural Resources (DNR), The State Botanical Garden of Georgia and The Environmental Resources Network, Inc. (TERN) encourage you and your students to participate in the 28th annual Give Wildlife a Chance Poster Contest! As part of DNR and TERN’s “Kids For Conservation” initiative, this art contest provides a unique opportunity for kindergarten through fifth-grade students to explore the wonders of Georgia’s native plant and nongame animal species through the 2017–2018 theme: Nature at Night!

1st Place Artwork
2017 Div. 4 1st Place, Zarabia Brown

Native species are those that naturally occur in Georgia, unlike exotic species that were introduced from other places. Georgia’s native plants and animals come in all shapes and sizes—from the large, moss-covered live oak (our state tree) to the little grass frog, the smallest frog species in North America. About 95% of Georgia’s native wildlife species are nongame (those which are not legally fished for or hunted) and include rare, threatened or endangered animals and plants such as Barbour’s map turtle and dwarf trillium. Our state is home to approximately 3,600 species of native plants, 950 nongame vertebrate species and countless invertebrate species and non-vascular plants. While game species are important, this art contest focuses on nongame wildlife.

Nongame wildlife can be found in your schoolyard, backyard or community greenspace. Some of the nongame wildlife that your students may want to depict in their artwork are bats, chipmunks, darters, frogs, hawks, songbirds, sea turtles, snakes, insects and many species of native plants. Take your students outside your school or on a field trip to a nearby state park, botanical garden or wildlife management area, and discover Georgia’s wildlife!

We look forward to working with you and your students at the 28th annual Give Wildlife a Chance Poster Contest!

If you have any questions, please contact: Linda May (linda.may@dnr.ga.gov, 706-557-3226) or Cora Keber (ckeber@uga.edu, 706-542-6158).

Contest materials: 


Teacher Tips

Start with a local contest at your school. While following the Poster Contest Rules and Guidelines, your students will design their own artwork based on this year’s contest theme. Then they will compete at the local level in a school-wide poster contest. First-, second- and third-place winners should be chosen from your school’s entries for the local-level contest at your school. All participating students can receive place award ribbons and a Give Wildlife a Chance certificate (refer to Contest Awards section). Participating schools will then choose one first-place winner from each division and mail the winning entries to The State Botanical Garden of Georgia to compete in the state-level contest by the April 13, 2018 deadline. These entries will be comprised of the four division categories described in the Poster Contest Rules and Guidelines section. First-, second- and third-place winners will be chosen as state-level winners from each division level, and their artwork will be showcased on GA DNR Wildlife Resources social media, as well as at the State Botanical Garden in Athens from May 8–16, 2018.

Classroom Activities & Resources

  • Help kids to see that wildlife, great and small, is all around them. Visit a garden, DNR education center, state park or simply step outside your school. Post a chart so students can record the birds, animals and interesting plants they see. Note the date and time of day for each observation.
  • Discuss wildlife viewing ethics. Don’t chase wildlife. Move quietly, slowly and in plain view. Maintain a safe distance; use binoculars rather than your feet to get closer. Be respectful of nesting and denning areas.
  • Use field guides and the internet to learn how to identify Georgia’s native plants and animals. DNR’s “Exploring Georgia’s Wildlife” coloring book is a great resource too!
  • Ask students to observe and/or research the behavior of a wild animal that lives in Georgia. Is their chosen species diurnal, crepuscular or nocturnal? What characteristics or adaptations help that species to survive and allow it to be more active at certain times of the day or night?
  • Encourage students to visit one or more of Georgia’s State Parks and Historic Sites with their families and friends. In conjunction with the 2018 “Parks After Dark” education theme, many state parks are offering evening programs for the public. Learn more at www.gastateparks.org.

Poster Contest Rules & Guidelines

Sponsorship & Judging

Second Place Winner
2017 Div. 2 2nd Place, Sophia Horne

The 28th annual Give Wildlife a Chance Poster Contest is sponsored by The Georgia Department of Natural Resources, The State Botanical Garden of Georgia and The Environmental Resources Network, Inc. (TERN). The theme changes yearly, though the contest is an ongoing educational effort to help children and teachers gain awareness of Georgia’s native plants and animals. Artists as well as wildlife and plant professionals judge the contest entries based on artistic interpretation, originality, visual impact and contest theme.

Eligibility

  • The contest is open to individual students (no group drawings) in kindergarten through 5th grades.
  • Homeschool groups, public schools and private schools are encouraged to participate.
  • Schools/groups may enter one poster from any or all divisions:
    • Division 1: Kindergarten
    • Division 2: First and Second Grades
    • Division 3: Third and Fourth Grades
    • Division 4: Fifth Grade
  • Each school/group may enter no more than at total of four posters to the state level contest (one per division).

Size & Format

  1. Outside dimensions cannot exceed 17" x 22" (vertically or horizontally).
  2. Collages and other three-dimensional artwork are not suitable for this contest.
  3. Posters should be submitted on white tagboard or on white art paper (no matting).
  4. DO NOT FOLD. Submit art flat in a package or roll into a mailing tube.
  5. If you want the students’ entries returned, you MUST include exact postage (stamps only—no metered tapes) and mailing label or the entries will not be returned.

Contest Rules

  1. While following the Poster Contest Rules and Guidelines, instruct your students to create their own artwork based on this year's theme, and arrange for a local competition at your school.
  2. Each entry should depict at least one native nongame plant and/or animal of Georgia. Please include the Artwork Description information on the Poster Contest Entry Form. This demonstrates to the judges the student researched their subject.
  3. First-, second- and third-place winners should be chosen at the local level (refer to Contest Awards section).
  4. All participating students can receive place award ribbons and a Give Wildlife a Chance certificate (refer to Contest Awards section).
  5. Only ONE school-wide winner from each division can be chosen to compete in the state-level contest at the State Botanical Garden of Georgia (refer to Eligibility section). State-level entries are normally the artwork of the first-place school winners.
  6. All contest entries must adhere to the contest theme: Nature at Night
  7. Avoid focusing on game species (those legally hunted or fished). Examples include white-tailed deer, wild turkey, gray squirrel, bear, bobcat, Canada geese, mourning dove, bobwhite quail, alligator, and largemouth bass. For a full list of game species, see the 2016–2017 Hunting Seasons and Fishing Regulations as well as the Migratory Bird Seasons. While these animals are important, this competition emphasizes Georgia's nongame animals and native plants.
  8. Do not include pictures of exotic zoo animals. This art contest focuses on Georgia’s native plants and animals.

Entry Form

  1. Attach a copy of the poster contest entry form to the back of each poster with tape.
  2. Please DO NOT use glue or staples.
  3. Send poster contest entries to: 
    Give Wildlife a Chance Poster Contest
    State Botanical Garden of Georgia
    2450 South Milledge Avenue
    Athens, GA 30605
    P: 706-542-6156; F: 706-542-3826

ENTRY DEADLINE: Friday, April 13, 2018.


Contest Awards

2nd Place Winner, Division 4
2017 Div. 4 2nd Place, Juan Diego Orduz

Certificates & Ribbons: Educators may request Give Wildlife a Chance certificates for all students who participate in their local school competition, as well as first-, second-, and third-place ribbons to present to class, grade level or school group participants. There is no limit to the number of certificates or ribbons a participating school can receive.

  • Mail, or fax, or email the Request For Awards form to:
    Give Wildlife a Chance Poster Contest​
    State Botanical Garden of Georgia
    2450 South Milledge Avenue
    Athens, GA 30605
    F: 706-542-3826
    ckeber@uga.edu

State-level Award: The artwork that is selected as first-, second- and third-place winners at the state level will be showcased on GA DNR Wildlife Resources social media as well as displayed at the State Botanical Garden in Athens, GA from May 8–16, 2018. Students also will receive state-level ribbons and may be recognized in other ways. Teachers and parents are encouraged to bring children to see the winning artwork on display and enjoy the beauty of the garden’s fascinating variety of plants. The fields and forests are great areas for wildlife watching too. Admission is free, although donations are accepted. For directions, operating hours and a garden map, visit http://botgarden.uga.edu.

Special Perks for Teachers & Parents of State Winners! The teacher and one parent of each state-level winner will receive a free bald eagle wildlife license plate, thanks to TERN: the DNR Nongame Friends Group!

The Georgia Department of Natural Resources (DNR), The State Botanical Garden of Georgia and The Environmental Resources Network, Inc. (TERN) encourage you and your students to participate in the annual Give Wildlife a Chance Poster Contest!

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