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Students from Meadowview and Prairie Mountain Middle Schools strike a pose at the end of their field day.

Jim Ewing of ODF teaches students how to measure and inventory a timber stand in Sweet Home.

Weyerhaeuser forester Mike McDowell explains the impact of soil compaction and erosion.

Seneca Jones Timber Company forester Ted Reiss explains soil composition.

Retired nurse Mary Thomas helps students identify wildlife through its tracks and scat.

OSU Extension educator Robin Galloway talks about lessons learned from clues found on the wildlife trail at the Udell Happy Valley Tree Farm in Sweet Home.

Former Lane County Commissioner Bill Fleenor takes lunch with students from Siuslaw Middle School during their May 30 Forest Field Day.

BLM Fish Biologist Chuck Vostal uses as stream simulator table to explain riparian protection.

Retired teacher, Porter Leighton, talks about native plants at the Siuslaw Middle School Forest Field Day.

Jordon Ryder of the Oregon Dept. of Forestry, teaches a student how to use a clinometer to measure the height of a tree.


Is a Forest Field Day just what your students need?

Click on the video below, created by the Oregon Forest Resources Insitute.

Want to help? Click here.

Come see the new face of Forest Field Days at the Bauman Family Tree Farm Click here for more information.

Forest Field Days — What it's all about ...

If you have ever had to make a group decision with your family, such as what movie to go to or where to vacation, you have an idea of how hard it can be to reach a family consensus. Coming to agreement on how to manage Grandma Petersen's land is the dilemma facing our Forest Field Day students.

Each student is asked to take the role of one of four "family" members to decide what to do with the property. Each student has a different viewpoint of what is important and what should be done. Kelly wants to protect the wildlife, while Chris wants to use the land for recreation. Sam is concerned that the soil and water resources are protected, and Alex thinks that the forest resources should be utilized to generate income. Although this is just an exercise, the dilemma demonstrates some of the complexities of land management on both public and private lands today.

The Forest Field Day Program helps students gain a better understanding of these issues by providing in-class curriculum, a day in the forest with hands-on educational activities led by resource professionals, a pre-field trip in-class presentation and a multi-disciplinary group project.

The curriculum guides — which are correlated to the state and federal benchmarks — are provided free of charge and include both in-class lessons and background information, as well as field data sheets for collecting information during the Forest Field Day, which are held on private forestland. Teacher guides and student workbooks are provided, as is transportation and coordination of the volunteer resource professionals.

During the field day, hands-on learning activities are held at four stations through which students rotate. At the forestry station, they learn some basic timber measurement techniques as well as gain a brief overview of sustainable forestry management approaches. At the wildlife station, students practice inventory plot sampling and discover how to evaluate wildlife habitat. Through the soil and water stations, they are provided with a basic understanding of soil composition, erosion and compaction and are introduced to the importance of riparian buffers and their affect upon stream function and water quality. During the recreation walk, students learn of the issues inherent to allowing the public access to both public and private lands.

If you would like to volunteer as a resource leader — or as general help — please review the schedule listed below and contact coordinator@foreststodayandforever.org. (The days run from about 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.) Not only is it a unique and worthwhile endeavor, it’s fun for everyone ... a wonderful, hands-on approach to science and environmental education. Many of our students tell us it's one of their best memories of school!

2013 Forest Field Day Schedule


At the Bauman Family Tree Farm

Thursday, October 3
Pleasant Hill MS
Crow MS

Friday, October 4
Briggs MS

The 2014 Spring Forest Field Day schedule is under development. If you are interested in participating or learning more, please contact coordinator@foreststodayandforever.org.

© 2013 Forests Today & Forever