Explore Nature’s Classroom
APEC Professional Development Workshops provide teachers with scientific knowledge to enhance classroom lessons and activities. Workshops include supplemental materials for teachers to implement in the classroom. All teacher workshops are aligned with Common Core Learning Standards in Science.
Creepy Crawly Critters: Studying Insects and Arachnids
Insects and Arachnids are two of the most important Arthropods in nature. Although the body structure and life cycles of these animals differ, they share a lot in common. Lesson material will specifically focus on the importance of butterflies and spiders and how they contribute to survival of all living things.
Mammals are amazing creatures with many special traits. Their great diversity in appearance, development and adaptations spark curiosity and excitement. Discussion will include in-depth exploration of marsupials, monotremes and placental animals. Learn interesting facts about local wildlife and teach students about clues in nature that these animals leave behind.
Bird Characteristics and Adaptations for Survival
Feathers are only one of many unique characteristics that birds possess. Participants will learn about many more bird traits and examine several nests, eggs, feathers and bird skulls to better understand these wonderful animals. A comparison of beaks and feet will provide a better understanding of how these animals are adapted for survival.
Study of Herpetology: Radical Reptiles & Amazing Amphibians
Herpetology is the scientific study of reptiles and amphibians. These two animal classes have several things in common, yet there are many unique differences. Hands-on activities, comparisons of live animals and interactive lesson ideas will inspire teachers to bring exciting scientific investigation to the classroom.
Pond and Estuary Ecosystems: Comparison of Freshwater and Saltwater Organisms
A healthy ecosystem is dependent on the interrelationship between biotic and abiotic components. Participants will compare and contrast freshwater and saltwater organisms and conduct water testing from the local pond and salt marsh. A discussion of environmental factors threatening these ecosystems will help participants better understand the delicate balance in nature.
Seasonal Adaptations: How Do Animals Prepare for Winter?
How do animals adapt to the cold temperatures and survive our harsh winters? Local wildlife prepare for inclement weather in several different ways. Participants will learn about behavioral adaptations including migration and dormancy (hibernation and torpor). Some animals such as rabbits, squirrels, raccoons, and many birds stay active and survive with a combination of physical and physiological changes.
Endangered & Invasive Species
Many animal species are threatened with extinction. Why are some species declining at a faster rate than others? How do habitat loss and the introduction of invasive species contribute to this global phenomenon? Participants will learn about major factors contributing to endangered species and better understand how choices can cause effective change.
Global Warming & Climate Change
As human populations are expanding, our dependence on fossil fuels and increased production of greenhouse gasses have created marked changes in the environment. Participants will learn the facts to better engage their students and teach them about the importance of how small daily changes can cause positive changes for Planet Earth.