The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service will hold two Birds in the Classroom workshops for Texas teachers. The first will take place June 3-5 in Sinton; the second will run July 27-29 in Sonora.
March 27 is the deadline to apply for Birds in the Classroom. Instruction, workshop materials, meals and lodging are all at no cost to applicants who are selected to attend.
AgriLife Extension and the Welder Wildlife Foundation are working together to put on the multi-day events. This is a new program geared toward educators who teach grades 7-12 and provides 22 Texas Education Agency continuing professional education credits.
“This is a workshop for teachers to connect healthy agriculture with healthy habitats through the experience of birding,” said Maureen Frank, Ph.D., AgriLife Extension wildlife specialist, Uvalde.
The program is a collaboration between Frank; Megan Clayton, Ph.D., AgriLife Extension range specialist, Corpus Christi; Selma Glasscock, Ph.D., Welder Wildlife Foundation assistant director, Sinton; and Angie Arredondo, Welder Wildlife Foundation education and volunteer program coordinator, Sinton.
“We created this program to help teachers cover a large amount of material in an efficient way that really connects their students with natural resources,” said Frank. “For biology and ag teachers, this workshop will help them understand how sustainable agriculture fits into the conservation picture.”
Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills, or TEKS, aligned lessons and activities will be covered. Participants will learn bird identification and how to use birding to connect lessons on habitat management, bird conservation and sustainable agriculture.
The value of the workshop is $300 but is made available at no cost thanks to a grant awarded to AgriLife Extension and the Welder Wildlife Foundation, said Frank. Participants are also eligible for mileage reimbursement.