Teachers can go to summer camp to learn about wildlife

VTF&W photo by Tom Rogers
Vermont wildlife biologist Paul Hamelin instructs a group of teachers near a beaver pond at the Vermont Fish & Wildlife summer course for teachers. This year’s program is July 15-20 at Buck Lake in Woodbury.

Vermont’s popular hands-on fish and wildlife summer course will get teachers out into Vermont’s streams, forests and wetlands with some of the state’s leading natural resource experts July 15-20 at the Buck Lake Conservation Camp in Woodbury.

Now in its 33rd year, “Wildlife Management and Outdoor Education Techniques for Educators,” is a one-week, three-credit graduate course taught by Vermont Fish & Wildlife and other Agency of Natural Resources staff through Castleton University.

“Wildlife resources are important to all Vermonters in one way or another,” says Fish & Wildlife’s Education Manager Alison Thomas.  “If educators can get connected with the outdoors and in turn expose their students, then many of these students will be able to make informed decisions about Vermont wildlife and their habitat needs.”

The course is unique as it’s geared toward pre-kindergarten through twelfth-grade teachers from any discipline – math, language arts, physical education, history, etc., Thomas said. The goal is to improve teachers’ instructional strategies to make their lesson plans more relevant to students.

Thomas said the class continues to evolve by incorporating new environmental education ideas and activities. “But we also continue to do traditional programs that have been part of the week for 33 years.  It’s a great mix of new and old with all of it being incredibly helpful and memorable,” she said.

Tuition is $650 for the course. Books, food and overnight facilities are included. A limited number of partial scholarships are available. A course description, schedule of activities, and registration information are available by emailing: alison.thomas@vermont.gov.

Buck Lake Conservation Camp is located east of Route 14, north of Woodbury Village.

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