Prairie Lakes Area Education Agency

Iowa DNR offers learning opportunities

Iowa Department of Natural Resources offers two professional development opportunities for "Outdoor STEM" - one is targeted to early childhood educators (Growing Up WILD) and the other is an online opportunity to explore resources and build a project-based unit focused on local natural resources. Questions should be directed to Barb Gigar -

Growing Up WILD Training Opportunties

Date: 9/18/2018
Time: 5:30 - 9:30 PM  
Location: Botna Bend, 42926 Mahogany Rd, Hancock
Registration Deadline: 9/11//2018
Cost TBD
Contact for more information: CCR&R, DHS Training Registry 

Date: 9/29/2018
Time: 8:30 AM - 12:30 PM  
Location: Cedar Valley Park; West Branch Iowa
Registration Deadline: 9/21//2018
Cost:Tthis training is supported by a grant.
Contact for more information: Barbara Dunn-Swanson [; 563-886-6157]

Date: 11/3/2018
Time: 8:30 AM - 12:30 PM  
Location: Marr Park Education Center 2943 Hwy 92 Ainsworth
Registration Deadline: 10/25/2018
Cost $10 (Subsidized by grant)
Contact for more information: CCR&R, DHS Training Registry or Washington County Extension Office 319-653-4811

Exploring Iowa's Natural Resources: Course Information

Target Audience: STEM, Science, Social Studies, Ag. and Natural Resources; Grades K-12
Dates: Sept. 4-Dec. 30
Times: asynchronous
Location: online
Instructor: Linette Bernard, Barb Gigar
Cost: $305 – Materials, 3 License Renewal Credits; $455 – Materials, 3 Drake Graduate Credits

AEA Learning Online:* 

The goal of this course is to help you utilize a STEM-based approach that incorporates local natural resources as unifying themes to implement Iowa Core concepts in your curriculum. You will work in small groups and individually to create a network of contacts and resources to teach natural resource concepts. Group and individual assignments will build on each other throughout the course.

Participants will build a project-based learning unit for their personal teaching situation, so you can immediately incorporate the course resources and tactics into your teaching. It is offered for 3 license renewal or graduate credits, and also qualifies for credit for the STEM endorsement through Drake.

This course guides the participant through several resources that utilize a STEM-based approach to explore natural resources including:

  • Outdoor Observation Skills
  • Field Investigations
  • Schoolyard Biodiversity
  • Project Based Learning Model
  • Project WILD
  • Aquatic WILD
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