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Inquisitive by Nature?  Expand your Mind!

2014 Courses, Workshops, Field Experiences & Camps...

WEEK-LONG COURSES for educators  and community members
$300 Registration fee, includes ACT 48 Hours, instruction, education materials, classroom resources, field trips and breakfast and lunch.  These courses also provide options to earn the following credits at an additional fee noted.   NEIU-19 CPE - $315, plus registration; 3 Wilkes University Graduate Credits - $1,233, plus registration; 3 Keystone College Undergraduate Credits - $1,200, registration fee waived.  

  • Watershed Explorers (grades K-6) Watersheds are one of the most basic units of our natural world – they sustain life, supply our drinking water, support industry and provide habitat to plants and animals. Activities that occur in one portion of a watershed directly impact every organism living in downstream waterways and land. This hands-on course explores the essential role of water, the interdisciplinary nature of environmental issues, and strategies for watershed protection.  Key topics include human impact on the watershed, water movement through the forest, applied stream ecology, water quality monitoring, drinking water quality, ground water issues, global water issues, lake ecology and wetlands.  Field experiences include visits to Proctor & Gamble, Lazy Brook Park, Lackawanna River and Lake Manataka.  June 23-27
     

  • Geology of Northeast Pennsylvania Hybrid Course (grades K-12)  This hybrid course combines 3 days of online instruction with 2 days of field work led by Keystone College Geology Professor Ian Saginor.  Online activities include modeling geologic formations and using Google Earth to investigate real world geologic phenomena.  The course culminates in 2 days of field trips throughout Northeast PA, where participants learn about the geologic history of the region and will be introduced to the tools of a practicing geologists and learn how to use them to better understand the world around us. July 7-11
     
  • Climate Change & the Energy Challenge (grades 7-12) This course engages participants to understand the natural trends in climate change over geologic history, investigate the parameters and assumptions involved in climate prediction; and explore alternative energy sources such as wind, solar and nuclear. Participants will also learn about sustainability practices that support responsible resource management.  Opportunities will be provided to discuss natural gas opportunities and issues and learn about electric vehicle technology.  Field experiences include visits to a wind farm, Proctor & Gamble and a natural gas well drill site. July 14-18
     
  • Forests & Society (grades K-12) Actively managed forests sustain the eco system while assuring renewable resources are available to future generations. This course explores the concepts of forest stewardship, providing an understanding of the importance of forest literacy in education. Topics include tools of forestry/forest industry, national and Pennsylvania forest resources, tree identification, conservation history, white tailed deer, invasive species, forested watersheds, riparian buffers, urban forestry, and forest products, challenges, pests and sustainability. Field experiences include visits to Woodbourne Forest and Wildlife Preserve, Deer Park Lumber, Grey Towers National Historic Site and the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area.  July 21-25
     
  • Flora & Fauna of Pennsylvania (grades K-12) This course will teach you to identify plants and animals of Northeast PA and offers an intensive study of the interrelationships, behaviors and adaptations that support their biological success.  Through a combination of laboratory investigations, brief class discussions and extensive time in the field, participants will gain an understanding of how living things adapt and adjust to maintain themselves as they balance the influence s of nature and man.  Topics include birds (including banding), mammals, insects, amphibians, flowering plants, “lower” plants, mushrooms and aquatic organisms.  Collecting, photographing, preparing and curating specimens will be demonstrated. July 28 - August 1

    New for 2014!  SHORT COURSES for Educators (offers ACT 48 hours)
     
  • Exotic & Invasive Plants (grades K-12), Invasive plants have the ability to out-compete and out-reproduce native plants and threaten bio-diversity. This hands-on course consists of both classroom and field instruction that provides an overview of invasive and exotic species.  Topics include invasive plant identification; how and why they invade; their impact on habitat, ecological functions, and aquatic ecosystems; and effective control methods.  July 7 - 8, $150
     
  • Photography and Blogging (grades K-12)  Area nature photographers provide digital photography basics with an emphasis on composition, effective use of light, developing a photographic vision and digital photo manipulation through camera settings and no or low cost editing programs. The workshop also introduces the use of photography and blogging as interactive educational tools that expand learning to a global environment. Participants will be challenged to create a photo journal and blog that highlight their personal connection to nature, using Keystone’s Woodlands campus as a canvas, June 30 - July 1, $125

EXCEPTIONAL OUTDOOR FIELD EXPERIENCES                                     KCEEI naturalists with a passion for teaching and a respect for our environment will present a series of hands-on educational workshops, activities and outdoor adventures for those who want to explore, embrace, protect and enjoy our natural world. 

  • Winter Botany Field Day -  Join esteemed botanist Bill Olson and learn to identify plants and trees in their seasonal guise using twigs, seed stalks, rosettes and other clues. ExploreKeystone's Woodlands campus in its ever changing beauty – even in the winter. This workshop will be held indoors and out so please dress appropriately. The winter offers many nature photo opportunities so bring your camera along and receive tips on developing a photographic eye from amateur nature photographer Sharon Burke.  February 15, 10 am to 2 pm $50, includes a light lunch
     

  • Maple Sugar Demonstration & Open House - Join Professor Howard Jennings and naturalist Shane Kleiner at Keystone College’s Sugar Shack for a hands-on experience in the production of pure maple syrup. Bring the family for a fun-filled day of sweet surprises! March 30, 1 pm – 3 pm, Free
     

  • Recreational Tree Climbing - Certified arborist Alan Krieg introduces the growing adventure sport of recreational tree climbing, and demonstrates ropes and harnesses techniques that assure safety and cause no damage to the tree.   Alan will also discuss how sleeping in the canopy offers an exceptional birds-eye view of the natural world while traveling.  April 24, 4 pm – 6 pm, Free
     

  • Guided Eco-Bike Tour – Professional Landscape Architect and avid cyclist Tom McLane guides a leisurely back roads bicycle ride, with stops along the way to explore and learn about our diverse habitat and indigenous plants. May 18, 12 pm – 3 pm, $20
     

  • Susquehanna Afloat: A Kayaking Adventure Enjoy the  day paddling the tranquil waters of the Susquehanna  River while learning about the diverse habitat it provides within its waters and along its banks, how it has shaped  the communities around it, and the human impact on the sustainability of this watershed.  Guided by Naturalist Shane KleinerJune 7, 9 am – 3 pm, $75 includes kayak rental, lunch ($45 without rental)
     

  • Exploring the Underworld This caving adventure, led by naturalist Michael Nardacci and biologist Dr. Jerry Skinner, provides an opportunity to explore two caves in upstate New York while learning about the formation and conservation of caves and the organisms that call them home.  August 9, 7:00 am - 7pm, $100, includes transportation, cave entry fees and lunch.
     

  • Fishes of NEPA Splash around in a local waterways with biologist Dr. Jerry Skinner and use seines, dip nets and electrofishing to view, identify and learn about common, overlooked and endangered fish  and their habitats.  October 4, 9 am to 3 pm, $40, includes lunch
     

  • Guided Hike of the Howard Jennings Nature Preserve - Join Professor Howard Jennings, for whom the Preserve was named, for an interpretive hike along the Water Discovery, Streamside and Nokomis Forest Stewardship Trails.  October 18, 1 pm – 2:30 pm, Free
     

  • NEPA Fall Foliage & Nature Photography Bus Tour Travel the scenic back roads to some of our favorite places, enjoy inspiring photo opportunities, receive in-the-field photo composition tips and learn about our natural world during this beautiful time of Autumn splendor.  Amateur nature photographer Sharon Burke and botanist Bill Olson will be your excursion guides. October 19, 9 am to 3 pm. $50, includes lunch

SUSTAINABILITY SOLUTIONS FORUM
This forum offers a series of educational workshops that focus on sustainable solutions to conserve energy, protect waterways, understand challenges and opportunities related to Marcellus Shale, preserve green spaces through land trusts, and conserve resources on private land through assistance from conservation districts. The event will also feature information from area preserves and trails that offer outdoor exploration; a discussion on water ethics, a wild flower identification nature walk, kids activities and more.  SAVE THE DATE!  April 26, 9 am - 3 pm. The schedule of events will be announced shortly.

New for 2014! Young Naturalist Camps
We are very excited to be adding two camps for Young Naturalists to our activities this summer. More information will be posted shortly.