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Teachers from Across Florida Gather for Plant Camp 2018

By Dehlia Albrecht

WHO: UF/IFAS Center for Aquatic and Invasive Plants, in partnership with Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, Invasive Plant Management Section

WHAT: Plant Camp 2018 – a 5-day workshop for upper elementary, middle and high school teachers, and non-formal educators

WHEN: Monday, June 11 – Friday, June 15

WHERE: Gainesville, FL – See page 2 for list of locations by day

WHY: Educators receive intensive in-service training from presenters who offer a rare behind-the-scenes look at natural resource management issues in Florida. They leave camp with the background knowledge, curriculum, and materials needed to take these lessons into their classrooms and inspire the next generation to be responsible environmental stewards.

 

On Monday June 11h, teachers from across the state will travel to Gainesville for the annual in-service workshop Plant Camp hosted by the Florida Invasive Plant Education Initiative. And just like their students, they’ll be doing a lot of “campy” activities including hikes in the woods, learning about the local flora and fauna, exploring ponds and lakes for aquatic plants and critters and even participating in theatrical skits.

Launched 11 years ago, the Initiative is a collaborative outreach effort by the University of Florida/IFAS Center for Aquatic and Invasive Plants (CAIP) and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC)/Invasive Plant Management Section. Working with dozens of teachers throughout the state, more than 70 lessons, activities, and audio-visual presentations have been produced for upper elementary, middle and high school students. Materials correlate to Florida’s Next Generation Sunshine State Standards and Common Core State Standards and support learning skill-based science in a real-world context.

Plant Camp is the first event of its kind to provide such intensive in-service training for Florida teachers on the subject of aquatic and upland invasive plants. Attendees compete for the limited number of spaces available for this popular professional development opportunity, and are selected by a committee of teachers and UF/IFAS CAIP staff, based on evidence of interest and a commitment to sharing what they learn with students and colleagues.

Faculty from the University of Florida, state park biologists, administrators from FWC’s Invasive Plant Management Section, and plant managers from the private sector contribute as presenters and instructors, providing a rare behind-the-scenes look at natural resource management issues in the state of Florida. The goal is to give teachers the inspiration and confidence to share their new knowledge with students and colleagues upon return to the classroom.

Educators interested in attending Plant Camp next year can email caip-education@ufl.edu to be added to the mailing list and notified when applications are circulated in December.

Plant Camp 2018 Activity Locations

**Field activities on Tuesday and Wednesday mornings (in Gainesville area) will provide best photo ops.**

 

June 11th (Monday) Welcome Session

Classroom activities, 3:30pm-7:20pm

DoubleTree by Hilton Gainesville

3726 SW 40th Blvd

Gainesville, FL 32608

(352) 375-2400

 

June 12th (Tuesday) Morning

Field activities, 8:30am-11:30am

 

 

Location 1: Chinese Tallow Site

(behind the Florida School of Massage)

6421 SW 13th Street

Gainesville, FL 32608

 

Location 2: Audubon Property

SW 2nd Ct.

 

June 12th (Tuesday) Afternoon

Classroom activities, 1:15pm-5:30pm

DoubleTree by Hilton Gainesville

3726 SW 40th Blvd

Gainesville, FL 32608

(352) 375-2400

 

June 13th (Wednesday) All Day

Field activities, 7:45am-10:00am

and 12:15pm-1:50pm

Classroom activities, 2:30pm-4:30pm

 

UF/IFAS Center for Aquatic and Invasive Plants

7922 NW 71st Street

Gainesville, FL 32653

(352) 391-6843

June 14th (Thursday) Morning

(Field trip out of Gainesville area)

FWC Fisheries Division

1601 Scottys Road

Kissimmee, FL 34744

(407) 846-5300

 

June 14th (Thursday) Afternoon

(Field trip out of Gainesville area)

Osceola County Extension Office

Osceola Heritage Park

1921 Kissimmee Valley Lane

Kissimmee, FL 34744-6107

June 15th (Friday)

Final day, graduation at 12:30pm

 

DoubleTree by Hilton Gainesville

3726 SW 40th Blvd

Gainesville, FL 32608

(352) 375-2400

 

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