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ANCHORAGE FISH AND WILDLIFE FIELD OFFICE: Intern takes urban elementary students outside to learn about “Creeks and Critters”
Alaska Region, October 16, 2012
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Dani Thompson teaching 4th and 5th grade students at the
Dani Thompson teaching 4th and 5th grade students at the "salmon ID" station. - Photo Credit: Trent Liebich
One of the first photos of the day...just look at all those kids getting outside!!
One of the first photos of the day...just look at all those kids getting outside!! - Photo Credit: Ann Rappoport

Getting youth outdoors can be a struggle; even here in Alaska—but the FWS Anchorage Field Office (AFO) is doing their part thanks to the Student Conservation Association (SCA) internship program. Dani Thompson, a recent Environmental Studies grad of Dickinson College, Pennsylvania, is the AFO’s 6-month SCA outreach intern, furthering her experience in environmental education.

Funded in part by a Connecting People With Nature (CPWN) grant, Dani was tasked with reaching more diverse, low-income kids, giving them an opportunity to learn outdoors. When Dani arrived, this hope became the "Creeks & Critters” project, geared towards getting Anchorage Title 1 elementary students outside to learn about their local creek. Dani enthusiastically made this event a reality—developing activities, planning, and coordinating all the involved parties!

The sunny September event began with smiling, excited faces of 86 Tudor Elementary School 4th and 5th graders. Along with four teachers, ten parent chaperones, and eight FWS volunteer educators, students walked a couple minutes to nearby Campbell Creek where they rotated through five activities: Salmon ID, a "Nature Scavenger Hunt", Macroinvertebrates, Noise Pollution, and Salmon Life Cycle.

Overall, the event was a hit! Teachers provided positive, encouraging feedback, including their interest in making this an annual event with the AFO! With the help of more youth hires like Dani, the AFO hopes to expand to even more schools!


Contact Info: Danielle Thompson, 9072712788, danielle_thompson@fws.gov



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