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Enhancing the Environment by Preserving Soil, Water & Our Resources

Education Guide

Classroom Programs | Community Programs | 4-H Soil and Water Conservation Project
Envirothon / Northwest Indiana Regional Envirothon | Teacher Resources

Classroom Programs

Classroom Programs are 1 hour in length and some require an outdoor space, science lab or art room.

Pollinators-Children learn about the process and importance of pollination, including parts of flowers and various species responsible for pollination. (K-3)

Project Soil 1-Students will learn about soil textures, different types of erosion and why soil is important to everyone. (1-3)

What is a Watershed?-The Enviroscape© is a watershed model that can be used to demonstrate all sorts of ecological processes and allow students to investigate the causes of point and non-point source pollution. Can also be used to look at the function of wetlands. (3-adult)

Project Soil 2-Students will get hands on experience with soil texturing (MESSY!) Students will also learn different uses for soil and its importance to them. (4-6)

The Incredible Journey (Levels 1 and 2)-Students will simulate the movement of water within the water cycle by playing a fun game! (4-8)

Edible Soils-Children learn about the most valuable natural resource and enjoy eating a little dirt. (K-8)
*this program involves food! Please check allergies prior to scheduling!

Sum of the Parts-Students demonstrate how everyone contributes to the pollution of a river as it flows through a watershed and recognize that everyone’s contribution can be reduced. (4-8)

Wacky Waterdrops-Students will simulate the movement of water within the water cycle by playing a fun game! (1-3)

8-4-1, One for All-This activity allows students to understand the various pressures put on a water supply and how we all must work together to preserve and protect our water. (6-adult)

Animals in Winter-We will read books about animal adaptations to winter (hibernation, migration, etc.), conduct an investigation and follow it up with a relay race! (best done in a gym) (K-3)

Investigating Soil-An inquiry into what makes up our soil and why it is one of our most valuable resources. Students will get hands on experience with different soil types and what is in the soil. This program is best done in Spring or Fall and outside if possible. (K-3)

Honeybees-We will learn about the life cycle of the honeybee and the differences between honeybees, other native bees and wasps. Then we’ll simulate the roles of various worker bees using costumes and props. (K-2)

The Living Soil-Students learn that the soil ecosystem plays a very important part of life above ground and how healthy soils support healthy environments. (3-6)

This is just a sampling of our programs. We can create something specific for a topic of your choice or tweak any of the programs listed for various age groups. Just contact us!

Soil Trek-Students do several hands-on activities outside. Some of the activities include: pH testing, soil temperature and percolation test. (4-High School) Spring and Fall.

Remember! All programs are free, but the expenses are supported by our Affiliate Membership dues. Have you considered purchasing an affiliate membership for your class?

For program scheduling or questions contact the SWCD office at
(219) 326-6808 ext. 2115 or email: nmessacar@laportecounty.org

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Community Programs

Our Education Coordinator is available to speak at your group meetings. She currently has presentations available on the following topics:

  • Rain Gardens
  • Pollinators and Native Plants
  • Vermicomposting

If you would like a presentation on any other type of environmental or agricultural issue, please contact our office. We are more than happy to develop something for you. Also, many of our classroom activities work very well for adults. (And they’re fun!) If you are looking for help with a meeting, just give us a call at (219) 362-6633 ext. 3.

LaPorte County Soil & Water Conservation District - Community Programs

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4-H Soil and Water Conservation Project

The project offers many activities from performing a worm census to interviewing conservation professionals -- and everything in between! If you are interested in more information about this project, or would like someone to come talk to your club about it, please contact Nicole Messacar at the SWCD Office. Our number is 219-326-6808, ext. 2115 or by e-mail at nmessacar@laportecounty.org. You can also contact the Purdue Cooperative Extension Office at 219-324-9407.

LaPorte County Soil & Water Conservation District - 4-H Soil and Water Conservation Project

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Envirothon / Northwest Indiana Regional Envirothon

The 2019 Northwest Indiana Regional Envirothon will be held at Red Mill County Park on Thursday, March 14, 2019.

The Indiana Envirothon is a competitive learning event for high school aged students. It is open not only to school groups but scouting groups, FFA’s, Green Teams, 4-H groups,  home-schoolers, and more.  Envirothon tests students’ knowledge on a variety of topics including soils, forestry, wildlife, aquatics and current environmental issues.

Envirothon raises environmental awareness and prepares tomorrow’s leaders to deal with the consequences of human activity on our environment.

At the national level, students compete for over $100,000 in scholarships. Please visit www.envirothon.org for additional information about the national competition.

James Potthoff Forestry

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Teacher Resources

Natural Resources Conservation Service Education Resources 

Indiana Envirothon

EPA Teaching Center

Environmental Education Association of Indiana

PBS Interactive Pollinator Game (fun on a Smart board!)

National Pollinator Partnership 

Project Learning Tree 

Project Wet

Project WILD

Flying Wild

Earth Partnership for Schools 

Cornell Lab of Ornithology 

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