In case you are wondering what you will be doing during the actual Envirothon, the answer is participating and planning. Because of this, we will have a contact hour certificate for 10 hours whether or not you bring a team.
On Thursday afternoon, we will be holding a skills review. Each of the four primary stations- aquatic ecology, soils, forestry and wildlife- will run their review twice. Each skills review will last about an hour, maybe a little longer. Advisors are encouraged to attend the skills review with their students.
The final hour of the skills review will be the Current Issue Overview. Students will be allowed to take notes on paper that is provided. All students will participate in this since all students have to participate in the presentation. This will help give students a good baseline of information about Sustainable Range Management, this year’s current issue.
After the skills review, the teams will go into planning time for their Current Issue Presentation where they surrender their phones and any other resource except for the notes they took during the Overview. They will be provided with all the materials they are allowed to use in the presentation including a mystery object. (Think of the mystery ingredient in the Iron Chef program).
The team buddies will proctor planning time. Students will not be allowed to consult with their advisors. Depending on the availability of team buddies, I may ask teachers to serve as team buddies for a team on Thursday evening.
After planning time, students surrender their notes and all the materials associated with the planning. The purpose for all this collecting is to create a level playing field – everyone starts with the same materials – as well as to help ensure that the work is, as much as possible, the students work and not that of their advisor or the resource guides. They can only bring in what’s in their brain. Talking and consulting with the teacher/advisor/guide book out of planning time is allowed here at the state level but they have to understand the material enough to internalize it when they go back into planning time. Other than their initial notes from the Overview which they leave with their planning materials, students cannot bring any material with them into planning.
Thursday night is dinner and a cruise on the Capital City Queen, weather permitting. Advisors will chaperon.
Friday is breakfast at the lodge at from 7:30-8:00. Everyone will meet at 8:30 and go over the rules and expectations. Teams with their buddies go to their site and competition starts at 9AM. Right now, I should have enough buddies for Friday that teachers do not need to serve as a buddy. Teams have 45 minutes to answer the questions. Teachers will visit the various stations in the morning. How long the teachers stay at each station is up the group. Competition goes till 12:30PM. A sack lunch will be provided and teams will go into planning time.
Teachers will have their own planning and prep time. There are three main topics for teachers to work on while teams are planning for their presentations:
- Preparation strategies: ideas and resources to prepare your teams
- Next year’s current issue: sustainable and local agriculture. Content provided by Dakota Rural Action.
- Planning next year’s competition: where, when, how. Provide feedback.
Let me know if you have any questions about this.