DNR Workshop Offers Natural Resources Teaching Tools, Education Credit Through Ferris

Academy of Natural ResourcesFerris State University’s School of Education is partnering with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources to offer educators a workshop in conservation education. The workshop provides an opportunity to acquire skills and resources for the classroom, to earn college education credits or State Continuing Education Clock Hours.

The DNR’s Academy of Natural Resources, scheduled July 14-19 at the Ralph A. MacMullen Conference Center in Roscommon, provides a series of workshops for educators who want to blend natural resources themes into their classrooms. Undergraduate and graduate education credits are available through Ferris or 35 SCHECHs.

“This is a unique experience,” said Cindy Fitzwilliams-Heck, a biology instructor and the ANR course instructor at Ferris. “ANR participants learn about our natural resources, conservation practices and hands-on teaching applications. The workshop is a series of rigorous, yet fun, courses and field trips. This also is the first time Ferris has partnered with the DNR in this capacity.”

Program options include “Teachers into the Wild,” for upper elementary through high school educators; “Forests, Fields and Fins,” for middle and high school educators; and “Week for Early Elementary” (WEE Ones), for early elementary school teachers.

“Teachers into the Wild” teaches participants outdoor skills through activities such as archery, kayaking and canoeing. “Forest, Field, and Fins” is field intensive and focuses on how natural resources are cared for, and “WEE Ones” shows educators how to incorporate nature-based best practices into their daily curricula. Some certification is offered.

“By attending ANR, participants can become more confident in conservation education and getting students outside,” said Fitzwilliams-Heck. “I am really looking forward to teaching at ANR. I have a passion for the outdoors, teaching and managing for the conservation of our natural resources.”

For additional information on the program, including costs, how to earn credits through Ferris and to register, go to http://www.michigan.gov/dnr/0,4570,7-153-10369_46264_50044---,00.html.

Other questions can be directed to Fitzwilliams-Heck by emailing her at fitzwilc@ferris.edu.

Last updated: 08-15-2013