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KIDS IN THE WOODS

KIDS IN THE WOODS

The Kids in the Woods Program in Gainesville, FL, takes 4th and 6th grade students outside to conduct scientific studies on their school campuses and in nearby nature areas. This program is currently at Westwood Middle School, Stephen Foster Elementary School, and Littlewood Elementary School.  Program partners work with students and teachers at Westwood Middle School to explore scientific concepts such as bird feeding behavior, creek erosion and deposition, and tree identification and benefits. The program at the elementary schools focuses on an insect biodiversity study. Students learn about the scientific method - developing a hypothesis, participating in experimental design, collecting and analyzing data, and drawing conclusions. 

Partners

UF Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences

UF School of Forest Resources and Conservation

USDA Forest Service

City of Gainesville Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs

Alachua County Environmental Protection Department

School Board of Alachua County

This program has...

Impacted over 3,000 youth participants

Produced over 2,500 volunteer hours from community members

 

Testimonial

"It's easier for me to learn when I'm doing it rather than reading about it. I love Kids in the Woods because I get to learn about nature and nature is one of my favorite things."

 

                                                 -Westwood 6th grader

CREEK

EROSION

STUDY

 

BIRD STUDY

The purpose of the bird observation study is for students to learn about the scientific method while enjoying the outdoors and getting to know local bird species. Westwood’s 6th grade scientists learn about experimental design, independent and dependent variables, constants, control groups, repetition, observations, data collection, and analysis.

 

CREEK STUDY

In this study, students measure creek erosion, deposition, and water flow in Hogtown Creek, which runs through Loblolly Woods. The students measure erosion by creating a stream profile and comparing their results to the previous year's measurements to determine how much erosion occurred.

TREE STUDY

The purpose of the tree benefits study is for students to learn how to identify local tree species in the nearby Loblolly Woods. Students learn the basics of tree identification and common terms, as well as how to use a dichotomous key to correctly classify and identify trees.

 

INSECT BIODIVERSITY STUDY

The purpose of the insect biodiversity study is for students to learn about the scientific method while enjoying the outdoors and getting to know local insect orders. The 4th grade scientists learn about experimental design, independent and dependent variables, constants, control groups, repetition, observations, data collection, and analysis.