East Central Regional Blog – September 2016

by Brandon on 2016/08/31

in East Central, Regional Reports

I know you haven’t had a blog from me in a little while but between summer camps, creating a new outdoor exhibit, and planning the NMEA conference this summer has been insanely busy. So after a bit of hiatus I am back to share some great resources with you. Enjoy!

Wish for a Fish

Do you want to collect fish and aquatic invertebrates to use for education? Then this class is for you. September 10, from 11:00am-2:00pm there will be an aquatic species collection workshop at Riverwalk Park in Rockledge. The cost is $25 and includes a 3-year permit that allows you to collect aquatic species for educational use. Go to https://www.regonline.com/ascw-riverwalk-160910 to register. There are less than 10 spots remaining so don’t delay.

Unleash Your Inner Cameron

Beneath the Waves Youth Making Ripples Film Festival is now open for submissions for any student in grades K-12 . All films must be on a marine-related topic and must be less than 5 minutes in length. There is NO submission fee for the Youth Making Ripples Competition. Finalists are eligible to win small scholarships and a shark tagging expedition. Films for the 2017 festival should be submitted by December 5th, 2016 and should be submitted to: youthmakingripples@gmail.com For the full details please see visit the website at http://beneaththewaves.org/youth-programs/submit-a-youth-film/

Did you say Free?

Inwater Research Group is offering several free resources to teachers including traveling trunks, lesson plans, and informational posters.

Traveling Trunks are a great way to get 3rd-8th graders interested in STEM initaitves through inquiry-based learning. Students will learn about Florida’s sea turtles, their nesting habits, how to sample populations, and step into the role of IRG biologists. Check their program calendar to see what dates are available. Once there, go to the left panel and click “Files”. Download the Registration Form and email back to rmott@inwater.org to reserve your trunk.

Lessons are designed to translate real sea turtle research into meaningful conservation lessons. Students get hands on with tools of the trade, and in the role of biologists to see what real scientists to on a daily basis. Trunks can be borrowed for up to three weeks and contain four conservation-based lessons. Lessons are pre-printed, cut, laminated and ready to go in the lesson binder, leaving little to no work for you!

Not in Martin or St. Lucie County? Not a problem! They have partnered with 5 organizations throughout the state to expand our reach. To see if these organizations are within your school districts, take a look below!

IRG’s Traveling Trunks are now available through:

Indian River County Sea Turtle Program: Indian River County
Kendra Cope
(772) 538-0616

Suncoast Science Center: Manatee and Sarasota County
Madeline Hansen
(941) 840-4394

UF Whitney Lab: Flagler and St. Johns County
Catherine Eastman
(904) 461-4028

Broward County Parks and Recreation: Broward and Palm Beach County
Katherine Hendrickson
(954) 357-5113

Trout Lake Nature Center: Lake and Volusia County
Eileen Tramontana
(352) 357-7536

Lesson plans span K-12th grade and cater to each grade levels NGSSS benchmarks and learning styles. Students will journey through the amazing world of sea turtles to learn about their biology, ecology, research, and conservation practices. Lessons are mailed directly to your doorstep on a DVD. They require little to no extra supplies* and are built to engage students in a meaningful way. To request your lessons plans, please visit here.

They also offer a series of educational posters for the classroom that pair beautiful artwork with scientific information. To see which poster would look best in your classroom, please visit here. While not listed, we have limited availability for the individual 5 species of Florida’s sea turtles both in English and Spanish. If you’d like to request these, please mention it in the email you send.

All About Estuaries

September 24th Mark’s National Estuaries Day. The Barrier Island Center is not limiting it to just one day though. Check out their various programs throughout the month surrounding the topic of estuaries. Learn to count fish and go snorkeling on your first survey, learn about and plant mangroves to adopt, make wind chimes from beach finds, and much more. Take a look at their September Calendar for all the upcoming events.

Shameless Plug

I always feel a bit strange plugging my own events on this blog as I like to be able to share what is going on throughout the region; however, there shouldn’t be anything wrong about some shameless self promotion once and a while, so here goes. National Estuaries Day also falls on the same day as National Public Lands Day. We will have a few events here at Riverwalk. First we will be removing invasive grape vine from our nature preserve along the Indian River Lagoon from 9:00am – 2:00pm as part of National Public Lands Day. At the same time we are also holding an event to raise money for our Nature Explore Classroom, a nature based playground, where you can sponsor and create a garden stepping stone to be placed into the new exhibit. A donation of $15 is suggested for each stone. We are holding a similar fundraising event on September 10, from 2:00pm-6:00pm. You can click the links for more information and to register.

Calling all Fellows

Are you getting ready to graduate or have graduated with a Masters or above in the last two years? Florida Sea Grant has a great Fellowship opportunity working with Florida Coastal Office of FDEP. See the fellowship announcement for more information.

Science Fair Made Simple

Do you know any 5th-8th grade students participating in the science fair? Have them attend Research Rules on Saturday, September 24, from 8:30am – 12:00pm, to learn tips and tricks to make a great science fair project. They will also be able to speak with professionals in related science fields to ask specific questions about their project ideas. Registration is free and everyone attending will receive prizes too! Go to www.spacecoastscience.org to find out more information and register.

And the Answer Is

How is your ocean trivia? Put your knowledge to use and help to review and edit questions for the National Ocean Sciences Bowl Technical Advisory Panel in September and October in Washington, D.C. Even better your travel expenses are paid for. What are you waiting for, check out the NOSB flyer to learn more and apply.

And remember, if you have any events or items to share with your fellow educators just send them my way and I’ll include them in my next blog. Until then, best fishes.


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