LEAF Program Annual Report July 1, 2014 - June 30, 2015 Enriching Students. Sustaining Forests. LEAF Wisconsin Center for Environmental Education UW-Stevens Point Stevens Point, Wisconsin
LEAF-Wisconsinâ€™s K-12 Forestry Education Program
715-346-4956 firstname.lastname@example.org uwsp.edu/cnr/leaf
Paul Mueller explains how to use a D-Tape.
Program Highlights LEAF in-services were provided at five Green & Healthy School Wisconsin sites. Eight new school forest/community forests were registered and five new education plans were approved, which brings the total of approved school forest education plans to 94. LEAF worked with nine schools across the state to create Edible Forests on their school sites. LEAF provided 38 professional development experiences for 596 educators in 2014-15. Professional development includes in-services, courses, statewide workshops, school forest workshops and conference presentations. Forty four PLT workshops were held at schools, nature centers, early childhood centers and colleges/ universities and conferences reaching 669 people. LEAF staff facilitated the FFA Career Development Event for 80 students. LEAF staff judged at the Wisconsin Youth Summit and the Wisconsin Envirothon serving 100 students at each event. The LEAF Winter Tree Identification Key was completed and is available on the website. LEAF staff created an online tutorial video to teach educators and their students how to accurately measure the diameter and height of a tree. LEAF curriculum materials were distributed to 75 teachers. Teachers participating in LEAF courses receive hard copies of their grade-specific unit, the “Wildland Fire” lesson guide, the “Urban Forest” lesson guide and a CD-ROM of the LEAF lesson guide materials. Project Learning Tree materials were distributed to 669 formal, nonformal and pre-service educators. LEAF Forestry Education Kits were used in 59 classrooms. Forest Health Kits were completed in partnership with LEAF and WDNR. Kits are available to borrow from 12 locations around Wisconsin. Five kits were created to supplement and support the Kindergarten through 8th grade LEAF lesson guides. A network of 40 active Wisconsin PLT facilitators was maintained as well as the training of three new facilitators. The annual school forest evaluation was conducted and 79 individual schools or districts provided responses to the survey out of 230 individual schools or districts that received the survey. This is a 34 percent response rate. A LEAF post-professional development evaluation was sent to 122 active email addresses for individuals who had taken a LEAF professional development experience between the dates of January – December 2013. The survey information was completed by 31 individuals. This is a 25 percent response rate.
Summit Elementary in-service
LEAF Program Overview Vision LEAF envisions inspired and informed citizens actively engaged in sustaining healthy forests and communities.
Mission LEAF’s mission is to integrate learning in and about Wisconsin’s forests into K-12 schools to provide the knowledge, skills and ways of thinking necessary to sustain our forests and communities.
LEAF advances forestry education in Wisconsin schools In 2001, the forestry community came together to request a comprehensive program to support forestry education in Wisconsin’s schools. The result was legislation that established the LEAF Program as a partnership between the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources - Division of Forestry and the Wisconsin Center for Environmental Education in the College of Natural Resources at UW-Stevens Point. LEAF provides teacher professional development, curriculum resources, support for school forests and outdoor classrooms and teacher networking to enhance learning in and about Wisconsin’s forests. In fiscal year 2014 LEAF began administering Wisconsin Project Learning Tree (PLT), one of the premier environmental education programs in the world. Through hands-on interdisciplinary activities PLT helps young people learn about complex environmental issues. Project Learning Tree is a program of the American Forest Foundation. LEAF works to fully integrate its and partners’ services and resources to provide a comprehensive and holistic approach to forestry education. As we move ahead, we foresee a greater depth and diversity of LEAF services and resources within our priority programmatic areas to accomplish this.
To date, LEAF and Project Learning Tree have combined to provide more than 160 professional development opportunities to Wisconsin educators. Along with more than 400 school forest parcels, students in nearly every county in Wisconsin benefit from forestry education opportunities. School Forest Ownership; includes public schools, private schools, and higher education institutions LEAF Professional Development Events Project Learning Tree Workshops
Great Lakes Timber Producers Association Mark Huempfer works with teachers in the school forest.
Forestry Education Goals Toward Outcomes
Inspire teachers to teach about and in Wisconsin’s forests Provide teachers forestry knowledge, skills and resources Increase teachers’ integration of acquired knowledge and materials into their curriculum Provide current tools and resources for teachers Communicate and impart important Wisconsin forest concepts from conceptual frameworks:
- What is a forest?
- Why are they important?
- How do we sustain?
- What is the future?
Build and maintain relationships with schools, community members and resource professionals to support school use of forests to teach and to teach about forests Work with teachers, administrators and community members to model and support integration of forest education into school curriculum, culture and facilities Support the development and utilization of outdoor classrooms Connect educators, resource professionals and partners with one another and LEAF to share resources, opportunities, successes and ideas to increase their effectiveness in forest education Serve in a leadership role to advocate for statewide forestry education Support student activities in order to enhance networking Maintain LEAF staff awareness of students’ and teachers’ needs Measure effectiveness in achieving outcomes and program objectives Use data to inform program development Communicate program effectiveness and justify LEAF to those who fund the program and forestry education stakeholders LEAF Staff Assist Summit Environmental School
Summit Environmental School in La Crosse, Wis. is working toward reducing its environmental impact and costs, and is dedicated to improving the health and wellness of its students and staff, as well as providing effective environmental and sustainability education. Their goal in becoming a Green & Healthy School will help them achieve their goals by helping their students become environmental stewards and be able to identify, investigate and evaluate environmental problems and issues. To assist Summit with their Green & Healthy School efforts, LEAF staff conducted two in-services. In the fall of 2014 Summit teachers were introduced to technologies that can be used in learning about their school forest and school grounds and were shown tree identification practices as well as school forest lessons. The following spring teachers were introduced to LEAF’s Winter Tree ID Key and the two projects that were taking place: an outdoor seating area in the school forest and a dock to give students better access to the “frog pond” on site.
Newman Catholic School Forest BioBlitz
Teacher Professional Development Strategic Priorities
Diversify and provide courses, workshops and in-services to holistically address professional development goals and focuses and program outcomes • Provide professional development for 600 educators focused on Wisconsin forests
Offer 12 LEAF courses that may include the following: 620, 621, 622, 623, and 624 Engage all LEAF staff and ad hoc instructors in collaborative course development
Provide teachers with outdoor experiences • Integrate outdoor learning into LEAF professional development and network offerings
Support the facilitation of Wisconsin Project Learning Tree (PLT) 25 workshops across the state at all levels (K-12 and pre-service) Support professional development specifically in Green & Healthy Schools
LEAF provided 38 professional development experiences for 596 educators in 2014-15. Professional development includes in-services, courses, statewide workshops, school forest workshops and conference presentations. Since 2003, approximately 7,000 educators have participated in LEAF professional development. Forty-four PLT workshops were held at schools, nature centers, early childhood centers and colleges/ universities and conferences reaching 669 people. Twelve in-services were provided at eight sites – more than half took place at Wisconsin Green & Healthy School sites. School forest and school grounds in-services were provided at Discovery Charter School (Columbus), Prince of Peace School (Milwaukee), Summit Elementary (La Crosse), Tomorrow River Community Charter School (Amherst) and at Baldwin-Woodville, Goodman, Granton and Hurley school districts. Ten LEAF courses were attended by 102 participants. These courses included a new Edible Forest course, Tree Identification, Winter Ecology and Tree ID, School Forest Programs and Administration, Enhancing School Forest Education, Greening Your Math, Human Influence on Wisconsin’s Forests and Forestry Education for the Wisconsin K-12 Classroom. LEAF staff and ad hoc instructors continue to develop and innovate courses and curriculum. Southeast Wisconsin School Forest Workshop in the Woodland was hosted by the Forest Exploration Center in partnership with LEAF. Nineteen educators from eight different districts attended. Forestry Education Kits were used in 59 classrooms.
Waupun School Forest
Curriculum Resources Strategic Priorities
Compile audience specific curriculum packages (e.g., art) of existing LEAF and other curriculum materials. Engage teachers in developing these packages Work with a graduate student to develop more curriculum resources directly related to the arts Continuously winnow existing non-LEAF forestry education resources to provide LEAF-recommended curriculum materials on a variety of subjects and topics Evaluate need for new/additional curriculum materials. Develop new materials as deemed necessary Maintain coordination of the Forestry Education Kits Develop Forest Health Kits in cooperation with the DNR Publish correlation materials relating LEAF curriculum to Common Core State Standards and the Next Generation Science Standards Coordinate the dissemination of PLT materials Develop resources kits that support LEAF curriculum materials
LEAF curriculum materials were distributed to 75 teachers. Teachers participating in LEAF courses receive hard copies of their grade-specific unit, the “Wildland Fire” lesson guide, the “Urban Forest” lesson guide and a CD-ROM of the LEAF lesson guide materials. LEAF lesson guide CD-ROMs were also distributed at four Project Learning Tree workshops. Published correlation of LEAF curriculum to Common Core Math and English Language Arts National Standards and the Next Generation for Science Standards. The School Forest Science Curriculum lessons continue to be shared and utilized by educators. The Forestry Education Kits were used in 59 classrooms. Forest Health Kits were completed in partnership with WDNR Forest Health Specialist Mike Hillstrom. Kits are available to borrow from 12 locations around Wisconsin including: Wisconsin EE Resources Library, St. Croix County Resource Management Division in Baldwin, Riveredge Nature Center in Saukville, MacKenzie Center in Poynette, and the Rhinelander, Green Bay, Madison, Waupaca, Reedsburg, Edgar, Unity (Balsam Lake) and West Salem School Districts. The LEAF Winter Tree Identification Key was completed and is available on the website. Activities for art teachers using forestry topics are being developed and will be piloted at a workshop in August 2015. Use of LEAF tree ID photos was requested by Mead Wildlife Area and will reach approximately 1,000 people per year. UW-Extension Master Gardeners Program requested to use LEAF’s Tree Identification Key for their Master Gardener I course and will reach 600 people. DNR Forestry staff will use portions of lessons in the 2-3 Unit and 5-6 Unit for projects they are working on for 350 students per year. Project Learning Tree materials were distributed to 669 formal, nonformal and pre-service educators. Five kits were created to supplement and support the Kindergarten through 8th grade LEAF lesson guides.
Forest Exploration Center School Forest Workshop
Networking Strategic Priorities Provide in-person networking opportunities • Offer LEAF Field Day • Offer outdoor education sessions at educator conferences
Develop mentorship opportunities for teachers Work with other partners to provide relevant information about forestry education Stay connected with educators and stakeholders using social media Provide educators and stakeholders with useful and meaningful information through LEAF’s newsletter, the LEAFlet and the LEAF website Maintain network of Wisconsin PLT facilitators and relationship with national PLT Assist with the Green & Healthy Schools Institute/Wisconsin Association for Environmental Education Annual Conference
Achievements School forest field trips to the Reedsburg School Forest and DC Everest School Forest were offered as part of the WSST and WAEE conferences. A Southeastern Wisconsin School Forest Workshop in the Woodland was hosted in partnership with the Forest Exploration Center and featured the DNR’s Forest Products Services Program. Nineteen teachers from eight districts in the Milwaukee area attended. Presentations about forestry education were offered at four (WSST, WAEE, WECA, WHSA) conferences and at WWOA’s Chapter Chair meeting. A network of 40 active Wisconsin PLT facilitators was maintained and three new facilitators were trained. Staff presented at the PLT International Coordinators’ Conference in Saratoga Springs, New York, about Green & Healthy Schools. Staff attended Wisconsin Governor’s Council on Forestry and Wisconsin SFI Implementation Committee meetings. Staff attended the Farm to School Summit to advance LEAF’s Edible Forest projects. Staff provided assistance to schools as part of the Green & Healthy Schools Provider Network. LEAF staff participated in the Food Systems Framework scope and sequence meeting, and provided advice for creating the document. LEAF staff provide support to 254 registered Green & Healthy Schools Wisconsin by contributing to monthly newsletters and serving as focus area contacts in community involvement, environmental/sustainability education and school site focus areas. LEAF maintains active outreach through a regular newsletter and an active Facebook page and a nationally recognized Twitter account.
L to R: Karen Dostal, Karla Lockman, Jordan Madden, Lexi Peeters, Brad Kildow, Lyle Eiden, Ethan Banks, Sarra Thimmesch, Gretchen Marshall
Consultation Strategic Priorities
Respond to requests from schools in the Wisconsin Green & Healthy Schools Program as it relates to LEAF priorities Respond to requests for assistance in all of our priority program areas Search out and explore opportunities to implement integration models (e.g., grade-specific, subject-specific, school-specific integration) Participate in the development of The Forest Exploration Center Provide support to the Tomorrow River Community Charter School Provide support to Columbus Discovery Charter School
Achievements Staff reviewed the National Green Ribbon Applicants from Green & Healthy Schools Wisconsin. The Goodman-Armstrong Creek School District partnership continued through 2014-2015 school year. The partnership strove to improve students’ reading and writing scores through innovative programs to teach these subjects by incorporating their environment – both built and natural into the lesson planning. LEAF provided three in-services and assisted with the Log-A-Load Event. School Forest Consultation services were provided to 305 individuals from 120 different school districts throughout Wisconsin. LEAF served 108 registered school forests and 12 potential school forests. Work was done in conjunction with 63 WDNR foresters, 19 other WDNR individuals and an additional 21 partnership/ outreach opportunities that are not captured in the school district, school forest and DNR forester totals. LEAF staff served on the Forest Exploration Center badge program planning and site planning teams. LEAF staff provided consulting services to the Tomorrow River Community Charter (Amherst), Discovery Charter (Columbus) and Wequiock Elementary (Green Bay) schools.
2014 School Forest Award Recipients
Second grade teacher Kevin Baird and fifth grade teacher Marty Maus, both of Summit Environmental School were recognized with the School Forest Teacher of the Year Award for their efforts in outdoor and environmental education. School Forest School Administrator of the Year was awarded to Nicolet High School Director of Facility Services Brian Reiels. John “Jack” Lussier was named School Forest Community Member of the Year for his contributions to the Nels P. Evjue School Forest in the Merrill Area Public School District, and Wisconsin DNR Foresters Brad Kildow and Lyle Eiden received the School Forest Resource Personnel Award for their extensive work with central Wisconsin school forests and students.
Hurley School Forest in-service
Outdoor Classrooms Strategic Priorities
Support school forest development and utilization and explore additional services as needed • Assist schools with the development of school forest educational plans • Present awards for school forests accomplishments • Visit school forest sites with school staff • Conduct school forest courses for credit • Register school and community forests • Present to partner organizations and agencies information about school forests and LEAF
Support schools in the development and utilization of their outdoor classrooms on school sites • Provide professional development offerings on developing and utilizing outdoor classrooms • Assemble and offer materials and resources to support outdoor classrooms • Consult with schools on the development and utilization of outdoor classrooms
Provide support to schools that request assistance to conduct a BioBlitz
School forest/community forest registration assistance was provided to 23 schools and one municipality. Eight new school forests and one new community forest were registered. LEAF assisted nineteen schools were assisted in the development and approval of their school forest education plans. There five new education plans approved and there are a total of 94 approved school forest education plans in the state. Four school forest awards were presented in local communities. The award winners include: Teachers: Marty Maus and Kevin Baird (Summit Elementary School Forest, La Crosse); Community Member: Jack Lussier (Nels P. Evjue School Forest, Merrill); Resource Professionals: DNR Foresters Brad Kildow and Lyle Eiden (Boston School Forest, Stevens Point); School Administrator: Brian Reiels (Nicolet High School Forest, Glendale). Provided expertise for BioBlitzes at the following schools: Fox River Academy (Appleton), Goodman, Granton, Pulaski, Crandon, Keshena, Eagleville Charter School and Belmont. School Grounds Utilization professional development was provided 28 teachers at Summit Elementary in La Crosse during each of two in-services.
Amherst School Forest
Student Activities Strategic Priorities
Maintain the annual FFA Career Development Event (CDE) in partnership with agriculture educators
The FFA Career Development Event was offered for 80 students. Model teaching was provided multiple times in different subject areas at: Granton, Eagleville Charter School (Mukwonago), Prince of Peace (Milwaukee), Viroqua Elementary (Viroqua), Keshena, Mosinee, Goodman, Discovery Charter School (Columbus) and Tomorrow River Charter School (Amherst). Staff judged at the Wisconsin Youth Summit where 100 students attended. Staff wrote the current issue scenario activity and judged for the Wisconsin Envirothon serving 100 students.
Evaluation Strategic Priorities
Conduct School Forest annual survey, professional development evaluation, post-professional development survey and informal evaluation tools Collect and analyze evaluation data from PLT workshops Assess program progress toward meeting program outcomes
LEAF utilizes a variety of ongoing evaluations of resources and services. Surveys are provided to participants at the end of all professional development and the forestry education kits and curriculum materials contain evaluations. The results of the evaluations are reviewed periodically to determine if changes are needed. The annual school forest evaluation was conducted 79 individual schools or districts provided responses to the survey out of 230 individual schools or districts that received the survey. Responses were received from 75 public school districts and three private schools and one higher education institution. This is a 34 percent response rate. A report is available upon request. A LEAF post-professional development evaluation was sent to 122 active email addresses for individuals who had taken a LEAF professional development experience between the dates of January – December 2013. The survey information was completed by 31 individuals. This is a 25 percent response rate. A report is available upon request.
Jennifer Hoffman sits inside a processor.
Budget Through the Wisconsin DNR - Division of Forestry, $370,000 is annually provided from the forestry account for the LEAF Program including the administration of Wisconsin Project Learning Tree. UW-Stevens Point and the WCEE provide in-kind support for the program and additional funds are generated through grants, contracts and program revenue.
LEAF Budget FY 2015 July 1, 2014 - June 30, 2015
$64,719 (12%) Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources $135,650 (24%)
In-kind (WCEE and UW-Stevens Point) $370,000 (64%)
Grants and Other Sources
LEAF is a partnership program. We thank all of our partners from the past 12 months. American Forest Foundation - Project Learning Tree Cofrin Center for Biodiversity at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Discovery Charter School (Columbus, Wis.) Earth Partnership for Schools Goodman-Armstrong Creek School District Great Lakes Timber Producers Association Society of American Foresters Sustainable Forestry Initiative Trees For Tomorrow United States Department of Agriculture, U.S. Forest Service UW Extension-Cooperative Extension
UW-Stevens Point College of Natural Resources Will Steger Foundation Wisconsin Association for Environmental Education Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction Wisconsin Environmental Education Board Wisconsin Environmental Education Foundation Wisconsin FFA Wisconsin Green & Healthy Schools Program Wisconsin Nursery Association Wisconsin Paper Council Wisconsin Society of American Foresters Wisconsin Society of Science Teachers Wisconsin Association of Agricultural Educators
Laona School Forest Timber Harvest
LEAF Staff Nicole Filizetti • Program Development Specialist Sarah Gilbert • Program Coordinator Chris Kuntz • Outreach Specialist Ann Lindner • Project Learning Tree Co-coordinator Gretchen Marshall • Forestry and Outdoor Education Specialist Dan Martinson • Communications and Networking Coordinator Janet Moore • LEAF Graduate Assistant Susan Schuller • WCEE Program Coordinator Jeremy Solin • WCEE Interim Director
LEAF Advisory Committee Laura Anderson-McIntyre Scott Bowe Tony Brazouski Scott Brown Cindy Edlund Sally Ellingboe Mark Goings Bob Govett Earl Gustafson Kirsten Held Jeff Hicken Mike Johnson Jeremy Koslowski Jan Lehrer Kendra Liddicoat Victoria Rydberg Henry Schienebeck Dennis Schoeneck Barb Thompson Patti Schaefer Cheryl Todea Mary Wendorf Sherry Wise Ron Zalesny, Jr.
UW-Stevens Point College of Natural Resources, Assistant Professor of Forest Recreation UW-Madison, Department of Forest and Wildlife Ecology Executive Director of Academic Achievement McFarland School District Crandon School District Retired, Stevens Point School District Eau Claire Area School District UW-Stevens Point College of Natural Resources Wisconsin Paper Council Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources - Division of Forestry Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction - Agriculture Education La Crosse Area School District Wisconsin County Forest Association Wisconsin Woodland Owners Association UW-Stevens Point College of Natural Resources, Assistant Professor of Environmental Education Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction - Environmental Education Great Lakes Timber Professionals Association Enterprise Forest Products, Inc. West Salem School District Madison Metropolitan School District Trees for Tomorrow Merrill School Forest Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Bureau of Parks and Recreation U.S. Forest Service, Northern Research Station
LEAF-Wisconsin’s K-12 Forestry Education Program
The University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Institution. UW-Stevens Point is a tobacco-free campus.
Published on Oct 21, 2015
LEAF's annual report details the goals and achievements of LEAF - the Wisconsin K-12 Forestry Education Program.