LEEC eNews:Short Course Spotlight, Raising an Outdoor Kid and More!

Short Course Spotlight

LEEC's 2019 Regional Short Course event is just a two weeks away. Our aim is to bring environmental education professional development to communities all around the state. Classroom teachers, non-formal educators and anyone seeking a better understanding of environmental projects in their communities have a host of choices available at  http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/2019-leec-regional-short-courses for the February 16 event. Register by next Friday, Februay 8 to make sure you receive all of the pre-course communications and all of the good stuff at the event like lunch, course materials and your "goodie bag."
Today, we're spotlighting: LSU Center for River Studies and Your Classroom (Baton Rouge Region) Combination Workshop and Tour
Learn how to bring the LSU Center for River Studies 10,000 square foot scale model of the lower Mississippi River to your students! This state-of-the-art facility offers several distinct themes with illustrations and interactive features to help visualize and communicate the importance of the Mississippi River Delta, the ongoing coastal land-loss crisis, and CPRA’s comprehensive Coastal Master Plan restoration and risk reduction program.  This session includes a research overview delivered by Principal Investigator Dr. Clint Willson. Actual water and sediment flow across the model’s 14,000 square mile section of Southeast Louisiana including Terrebonne, Barataria, Breton Sound, and Pontchartrain Basins, depicted on the map as an area from Donaldsonville to the Gulf of Mexico. Using exact parameters of the river’s physical and dynamic properties, the model produces a degree of accuracy never before achieved in lower-river physical modeling at this scale. The primary river-model goals are to produce qualitative land building results associated with sediment diversions in the Lower River, and serve as a complementary planning tool to computer models currently utilized. River Center staff will present an interactive presentation that projects satellite photos and graphics directly onto the massive model! They will also describe field trip opportunities for your students. In addition to the river model, we will cross the levee to view the spring flood pulse of the Mississippi River from the stunning terrace and conference facilities at The Estuary at the Water Campus. Here our session will continue with a review of connections to the Louisiana Student Standards for Science. Participants will learn how to use the model as an anchoring phenomenon and in the development of story-lines as they complete hands-on Youth Wetland Program lessons linked to the model. This is an experience not to be missed! 
Presenters: Steve Babcock, LSU Laboratory School/CPRA with Joseph McClatchy and Dr. Clint Wilson, LSU Center for River Studies 
Location: LSU Center for River Studies, 100 Terrace Ave., Baton Rouge, LA 70802
Grade Level: 5th-8th, 9th-12th
Time: 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.


Grant Application Deadline Approaching

The Louisiana Environmental Education Commission (LEEC) is now accepting proposals for their 2019-2020 Grants Program. The submission deadline for each of these grants is February 22, 2019. Applications will be accepted via electronic submission only.
Grants are available in four different categories: Educator, Green Schools, Professional Development and University Research. See http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/grant-opportunities for more information and to apply.

Art & Language Arts Contest

The 2019 LEEC Student Environmental Awareness Art and Language Arts Contest will feature the theme "Taking Environmental Action: What's Great About Your Part of the State?" We encourage students to investigate environmental efforts specific to their hometown, parish or region of the state. 
Students: Does your community have a unique recycling center, dedicated volunteer organization, green business or outdoor facility that makes it unique in the environmental landscape? Take inspiration from people doing good things for the environment and create a piece of visual or language art that explains what is great about your part of the state. 
The deadline for the contest is Friday, April 19, 2019.  See http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov/artcontest for contest rules and application form.

Education Opportunities

Introduction To Birdwatching (Free)

Sunday, February 10 from 9 - 11 a.m. at Jean Lafitte National Historical Park & Preserve, Barataria Preserve: 6588 Barataria Blvd, Marrero.
We love our birds and you will, too! Come and learn:
  • How to choose and use binoculars (loaners are available, but feel free to bring your own)
  • How to choose and use a field guide
  • How to identify birds using several characteristics
  • Which species are year-round residents and which are migratory visitors
  • How to record bird data on eBird for use in scientific research
Birders can finish the morning with a guided walk through the preserve to practice their new skills
Contact Kimberly Cooke to reserve your spot: kimberly_cooke@partner.nps.gov


Wednesday, February 20 from 7-9 p.m. at theBarataria Preserve, 314 Saint Mary Street, 6588 Barataria Blvd, Marrero
Spend a few hours learning about the critical role frogs play in their ecosystems. We will learn how to identify frogs by their calls and hike out in the preserve to locate and record the frogs we find for use in scientific research. We may run into some other surprises on the way. Night at the preserve is a special time when nocturnal animals are their busiest!
Contact Science Literacy and Engagement Manager Kimberly Cooke kimberly_cooke@partner.nps.gov to register.


How to Raise an Outdoor Kid

Nkrumah Frazier, the Sustainability Officer for the City of Hattiesburg, MS has written an engaging article about how he uses outdoor activity as part of his parenting strategy.
From the article, "I showed them what I like to do best outside. And through countless urban hikes, early morning bird watching and frequent trips back home to visit my family’s land, I’ve tried my best to bring the outdoors into my children’s lives."