Local Heroes - Your Hardworking Pollinators
Photo By: Susan Henning, OK
The NACD Stewardship and Education Committee is pleased to announce the theme for the 2015 NACD education materials, “Local Heroes – Your Hardworking Pollinators”. The materials developed will support Soil and Water Stewardship Week, April 26 to May 3, 2015, as well as additional education outreach. 2015 will be the 60th anniversary for Soil and Water Stewardship Week, which started as a national event in 1955.
NACD is collaborating with Pollinator Partnership on the materials. Several conservation district staff and Pollinator Partnership staff have been busy reviewing the materials in development. Watch this NACD education page for updated information on the poster contest as well as resources including the logo which is in development.
Soil is an amazing substance. A complex mix of minerals, air, and water, soil also teems with countless micro-organisms, and the decaying remains of once-living things. Soil is made of life and soil makes life.
To the farmer, soil is where crops grow.
To the engineer, soil is a foundation upon which to build.
To the ecologist, soil supports communities of living things.
To the archaeologist, soil holds clues to past cultures.
To the city dweller, soil nurtures grass and gardens. To the soil scientist, soil is all of these things. Soil has been called "the skin of the earth" because it is the thin outermost layer of the Earth's crust.
Like our own skin, we can't live without soil.
Source: Soil Science Society of America
The annual National Conservation Poster Contest provides students in grades kindergarten through 12 an opportunity to convey their thoughts about soil, water and related natural resource issues through art. It also highlights the educational outreach efforts of conservation districts and their state associations, auxiliaries and agencies. Resource materials, promotional PowerPoint and more can be found on the 2014 DIG DEEPER: Mysteries in the soil poster contest page.
The new DIG DEEPER - Mysteries in the soil education materials are available to order. There is a 10% discount on order of $150 or more placed by March 15, 2014. Enter code soil2014 during the checkout process to receive the discount. Visit the NACD Marketplace to place your order.
Soil and Water Stewardship Week is April 27 to May 4, 2014. Visit the stewardship page CLICK HERE
Online Sample packet of NACD Education Materials. Viewable - files are not printable.
PLEASE NOTE: some files are large and may take longer to download to view.
Poster ID for DIG DEEPER Poster Click Here (printable ID)
DIG DEEPER - Mysteries in the soil Educators Guide - DIG DEEPER. Overview of each booklet, next generation science starndards correlation, activities, vocabulary words, literature connections, resources and more. Available to download as a PDF file and printed copies are available from the NACD Marketplace.
Answer key for student booklets. worksheets in the Educators Guide and additional worksheets below.
Poster ID for DIG DEEPER Poster Click Here
Additional worksheets can be found in the educators guide link above.
Grade K-1 - DD_K-1_Worksheet_Plants_Food_Soil_2
Grade K-1 - DD_K-1_Worksheet_Plants_Food_Soil
Grade 2-3 - DD_Gr2-3_Worksheet_Soil_Senses
Grade 2-3 - DD_Gr2-3_Worksheet_Soil_Senses_Earthworms
Grade 4-5 - DD_gr4-5_Worksheet_Soil_Webs
Grade 4-5 - DD_gr4-5_Worksheet_TrophicLevels
Grade 6 and up - DD_Gr6_UP_Worksheet_Minerals (2pages)
Painting with Soil - Click Here
Fun Facts about worms and soil Click Here
Poster ID - DIG DEEPER Poster Click Here
2014 Stewardship Week Information |Click Here|
Download and use the 2014 Stewardship theme for promotional and educational purposes.
DIG DEEPER: Mysteries in the soil (high resolution; low resolution and black and white – also in RPG format on flickr)
Is water important to your daily life? The answer is yes, and here is why: We use water each and every day. Some of the direct uses are cooking, cleaning and brushing our teeth. There are many indirect uses that sometimes we forget how much water is needed to produce items we use everyday. The food you eat each day relies on water and good soil to produce it. About 4,000 gallons of water are needed to grow one bushel of corn, 11,000 gallons to grow one bushel of wheat and about 135,000 gallons to grow one ton of alfalfa. It also takes 30,000 gallons of water for to manufacture 1 ton of finished steel to build the vehicles we drive.
Water is important to us each and every day, and we all must work together to take care of it.
Materials are no longer available for purchase. Resource materials on this topic are available below.
Check our Where does your water shed? for our newest water education materials.
Activity Supplements (Activities in educators guide)
"Where’s the Groundwater" Vocabulary - A vocabulary list of groundwater-related words and definitions to supplement, Water Is Life Intermediate (Gr 2-3) activity "Where’s the Groundwater." | PDF |
Exhibit, Field Day and Classroom Activities (adaptable for all ages)
Healthy Water Hopscotch Activity - Participants in this printable activity learn about their own impacts on the quality of the water. This activity is great for field days, exhibits or school lesson plans.
Additional resources needed: 11”x17” paper for printing.
Urban Water Garden Project - This project, courtesy of Northern Rhode Island Conservation District, has lessons and activities about rain gardens, teaching students what rain gardens are and how they can plant their very own.
Action Class Project on Water Outreach Information – This resource includes interactive sites, water games, videos and lesson plans, articles and quizzes compiled by students in the classes of Peggy Pennington, ACTION Teacher at the Nevada Middle School and Truman Elementary located in Nevada, Montana. The school works with the Vernon County SWCD, and they are past winners of the Lexus and Scholastic Environmental Challenge.
Guidelines and Features for Outdoor Classrooms | PDF |
Interested in developing an outdoor classroom at a local school or area in your community? This guide was developed by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources - Division of Forestry and updated with permission by the National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD). It is only available in a PDF format that you can print as needed. This guide will give ideas for features in an outdoor classroom as well as setting up a community, funding ideas, curriculum resources and more.
Additional Outdoor Classroom Resources
NACD Outdoor Classroom Survey Results from May 2012 | PDF |
NACD Summer Resource Outdoor Classroom Section | PDF |
NACD Educators Guides (activities, literature connections and please see resource section for additional resources)
Conservation District Ideas and project sharing
SC: Orangeburg Conservation District
Kiosk 101 | PDF |
Check back for additional resources and photos!
Outdoor Classroom Questionnaire
Help NACD gather information on conservation districts working in their community to help get students and families outdoors. Conservation districts have been working with outdoor classrooms on school property, local parks and other locations. Please take the time to fill out the information.
Conservation of our natural resources is important in every community. Citizens are looking for ways to be involved at their homes, local schools or with community conservation projects. There are plenty of conservation habits that help conserve water, provide shelter for animals, birds and insects, as well as increase their food supplies. Habitats are all across North America and around the world. You can find them in forests, grasslands, deserts, wetlands, arctic tundra as well as right outside your backdoor and in your community.
NACD has created education materials to teach youth and adults the importance of habitats and pollinators.
NACD Marketplace – All “Conservation Habits = Healthy Habitats” education materials are available for to purchase at the NACD Marketplace.
Habitat Education Material Flyer (PDF, 1MB) – Download a flyer of all “Conservation Habits = Healthy Habitats” education materials you can purchase from the NACD Marketplace. Available materials include student booklets, posters, bookmarks, the placemat/activity sheet, the CD with PowerPoints for youth and adults and more!
Online Sample Packet Preview (New for 2010) – Preview the sample packet products before you purchase them. These online PDF files of the habitat education materials cannot be printed, but they give you an opportunity to review items before you buy. See the list of items available for preview below. Sample packets are available for purchase on the NACD Marketplace.
Habitat Educators Guide (PDF, 1MB) – This online interactive guide is full of great resources to use in the classroom or other educational programs. It contains activities, science standards that complement the Conservation Habits = Healthy Habitats student booklets, literature connections, links to additional habitat outreach materials and more. The educators guide is also available in print in quantities of ten from the NACD Marketplace.
How To Make Rain Barrels – Learn how to make a rain barrel and its advantages.
How To Develop A Raingarden – Guide for homeowners from the WI Department of Natural Resources and University of WI - Extension.
Make Flower and Garden Markers from Old Mini-Blinds (PDF, 74KB)
Reuse old mini blinds as markers for your flower beds or garden. Great make and take project for field days, county fairs and more.
Wetlands Habitat Hopscotch Activity (PDF, 30KB)
Take the kids outside on the sidewalk and hopscotch and learn how birds migrate on a flyway. Learn the importance of wetlands as habitats.
Natural Resource Topic Book List (PDF, 200KB) – Looking for books to read to students or add to your library collection? Download this list of books that will give students a better understanding of natural resources in their everyday life.
Conservation Habits = Healthy Habitats Logo, Clip Art and Images – Download and use the 2010 Stewardship theme, habitat clip art and habitat photos for promotional and educational purposes or to enhance your local newsletters, annual reports and articles for your local newspaper.
Conservation Habits = Healthy Habitats NACD Resource Winter '09 Feature Story (PDF, 1.8MB) – This is s great resource to share with your local schools, garden clubs, scouts or others interested in habitat development.
Topic Overview of Conservation Habits = Healthy Habitats (PDF, 37KB) – What is conservation and habitats? Information on the topic is reviewed in this handout.
Pervious Concrete Information – Pervious concrete is structural concrete pavement that "drinks" water. Water can pass through it rather than run off into storm drains carrying oil and other pollutants with it.
Pollinator Guides – Use these ecoregional planting guides to plant a pollinator friendly habitat at your home, school or in your community.