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The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation has added a link to a translation service developed by Microsoft Inc., entitled Bing Translator, as a convenience to visitors to the DEC website who speak languages other than English.

Additional information can be found at DEC's Language Assistance Page.

Annual Teacher Institutes and Academies

Living Environment Institute: Hurray for Herps!

Hosted by Five Rivers Environmental Education Center in Delmar, NY

August 3-6, 2015
9:00 AM - 4:00 PM each day
Materials Fee: $40 (includes dinner on second day)

Each summer, Five Rivers Environmental Education Center offers the Living Environment Institute to provide educators with the tools to present effective environmental lessons to their students. The theme of this year's institute is herptiles--reptiles and amphibians. We will address teaching about these fascinating creatures through field studies, activities and presentations, including live animals. You will learn how to integrate environmental topics throughout your curriculum and across disciplines.

Throughout our four-day program, we will explore classroom activities focused on reptiles and amphibians. Outdoor field studies and indoor presentations will include discussions about identification, monitoring, biodiversity, and ways to incorporate studies of reptile and amphibian habitats and adaptations into the classroom. Hands-on activities you can use in your classroom or program will be part of the lessons, drawing on concepts from Project Learning Tree's Biodiversity Module, Project WET and Project WILD. Join us, as we learn from environmental professionals from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, Siena College, Cornell University, other guest presenters, and from each other.

Space is limited to 25-30 teachers, so early registration is recommended. Teachers must register by July 17, 2015. Download the registration form (PDF) (47 KB) and send it to Five Rivers.

For more information or to register, contact Five Rivers at 518-475-0291 or e-mail Five Rivers at 5rivers@dec.ny.gov.

Four workers with a large net doing river sampling
sampling river macroinvertebrates

Summer Teacher Institute

Hosted by Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve & Environmental Education Center in Depew, NY

July 28-29, 2015
9:00 AM - 3:30 PM each day
Materials Fee: $40 (includes lunch on second day)

Educators of students in kindergarten to grade 8 will learn effective techniques to enhance their teaching in math, English language arts, science and other subject areas. Hands-on activities that align with Common Core and New York State learning standards will cover topics such as invasive species, tree and plant identification, citizen science projects, and bird-classroom connections. The training includes the Flying WILD curriculum that explores ideas for bird-related schoolyard enhancements, festivals and more.

Extensive information on environmental education resources available to Western New York teachers will be included in the program. Participants will receive written materials to enable them to transfer their new knowledge directly to the classroom.

The two-day program provides 12 hours of instruction for which in-service or continuing education credit may be available. A materials fee of $40 includes lunch on the second day.

Space is limited, so early registration is recommended. Download the registration form (PDF) (50 KB) and send it to Reinstein Woods. Teachers must register by July 10, 2015.

For more information, call 716-683-5959 or email Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve at reinsteinwoods@dec.ny.gov.

Bronx Summer Teacher Institute: Exploring Bronx Forests

Hosted by NYSDEC's NYC Education Program and Friends of Van Cortlandt Park

July 27 through August 1*, 2015
9:30 AM to 5:00 PM daily (*August 1 9:30 AM to 1:00 PM)
Registration cost for 3 Credits through NYCDOE's ASPDP: $275
(includes $125 ASPDP fee)

Exploring Bronx Forests uses hands-on activities to bring NYC's local outdoor resources: forests, fields and gardens, into the classroom to enhance classroom learning. We will explore different aspects of nature (including wildlife, plant life, and ecosystems) and how these different aspects interact with each other and with humans. Materials covered include Project WILD, Flying WILD, Project Learning Tree, Compost Project, and more. The course also introduces teachers to local environmental organizations and resources that they can utilize in their classrooms. Teachers will be provided with new strategies for introducing environmental topics in connection with math, literacy, and art, fostering student leadership, and developing higher order thinking skills.

To register for the Institute, contact Sara Kempton at Friends of Van Cortlandt Park at sara@vancortlandt.org or 718-601-1553. You MUST register with NYC Department of Education's After School Professional Development Program (ASPDP, link leaves DEC's website), a link to this site is also above and on the right. (Once on the ASPDP's website, use the link to the catalog of courses and search under provider using "Friends of Van Cortlandt Park" to find the actual course listing.)

For more information, contact Region 2 Education staff at 718-482-6404 or email Region 2 Education at r2ed@dec.ny.gov.