Missouri Environmental Literacy Advisory Board

A network of organizations, agencies and businesses working to advance environmental literacy in Missouri.

 

This work is supported by a grant from the U.S. EPA

Header Picture Captions: Left to Right: Friends of Rock Bridge Memorial S.P. Nature Detectives, Summer 2010; Academie Lafayette, Kansas City, Stream Class; Sustain Mizzou Green Team recycling at an MU home football game, Columbia. If you have pictures of your students learning aout or working in the environment (with permissions) send them to weaverjc@missouri.edu and we will post them.

MELAB Meeting Thursday November 14, 2013

back to Main MELAB page

Location: Runge Nature Center, Jefferson City

Runge Sign Runge Building Runge Observation Deck

Map it: Runge Nature Center

Time: 10:00 am to 3:00 pm

Meeting Objectives

  1. Increase participants’ awareness and knowledge of what others are doing in Missouri
  2. Increase the number of acquaintances or contacts each person has
  3. Work on common goals and objectives identified at previous meetings: inspiring stewardship, standards and assessments, green schools, promoting environmental leadership and career education

Meeting Schedule

Attendees

  1. Kevin Lohraff (Host) - Missouri Department of Conservation
  2. Jan Weaver (Facilitator) - Missouri EE Association
  3. Hope Gribble - US Green Building Council and Green Schools Quest
  4. Amber Edwards - Conservation Careers Academy
  5. Kim Petzing - Earthways
  6. Tana Pulles - Springfield Environmental Program
  7. Dr. Katie Belisle-Iffrig - LEED Green Associate
  8. Jim Jordan - UMSL
  9. Brandi Cartwright - Raintree School
  10. Eric Leuders - Parkway School District
  11. Kristen Schulte - State Park Youth Corps
  12. Alex Dzurick - City of Columbia
  13. Andrea Balkenbush MO DNR Planning
  14. Matt Riggs - KC EE Network
  15. Melanie Cheney - Mo River Relief
  16. Tina Casagrand - DNR Streams
  17. Nancy Feakes - Mark Twain Forest
  18. Ethan Duke - MO River Bird Observatory
  19. Alie Mays - MO River Bird Observatory

Not at this time, but keep me in the loop

  1. Erica Cox - MIssouri WET, WILD and Learning Tree
  2. Carter Anderson - DESE Future Farmers
  3. Glenda Abney- Earthways
  4. Faye Walmsley-Ozark Scenic National Riverways
  5. Bill O'Donnell - Ozark Scenic National Riverways
  6. Kendra Swee - MO State Parks
  7. Oscar Carter - MO Future Farmers
  8. Al Vogt - Conservation Federation of Missouri
  9. Erika Brandl - MO DESE Afterschool Programs
  10. Susan Trautman - Great Rivers Greenway
  11. Frieda Eivazi - Lincoln University
  12. Ken Perdue - Staples
  13. Diane Olson - Farm Bureau
  14. Judy Stinson - DNR, Envirothon
  15. Peggy Lemon - DNR, Envirothon
  16. Rob Didriksen - MO State Recycling Program
  17. Clara Collins-Coleman - Laumier Sculpture Park
  18. Susan Flowers - Washington University Institute for School Partnership
  19. Carol Davit - Mo Prairie Foundation

Work Group Materials

1. Stewardship/Marketing

Goal: Begin Developing a Marketing Plan for Stewardship

As you are able and as time permits, go register on Smart Chart at www.smartchart.org
Smart Chart is an interactive on-line platform for non-profits to help them develop marketing plans. It requires step-by-step planning so that marketing decisions are based on a well-thought out foundation –
1. Program Decisions – Broad Goal, Objective (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Time-bound), Decision Maker
2. Context – Internal Scan, External Scan, Defining Organization’s Position
3. Strategic Choices – Audience Target, Audience Readiness, Core Concerns, Theme, Message, Messengers
4. Communications Activities – Tactics, Timeline, Assignments, Budget
5. Measurements of Success – Outputs, Outcomes
6. Reality Check

HOMEWORK: It will be helpful if you pick a small marketing project for your organization and begin working through the program. It might take 1 or 2 hours depending on your background knowledge. This “homework” would enable you to make more headway when we get together as a group. The benefit for you is it might help you generate new ideas for your own organization.

MEETING WORK: At the meeting, members of the stewardship group should pair up, with each pair taking on a SINGLE specific stewardship activity and begin developing a plan for reaching a SINGLE specific audience. It will be helpful if at least one person of the pair has a laptop on which to work, but I will provide a hard copy worksheet as well. It is unlikely that any group will finish their planning at this meeting, but each pair should be able to identify some productive ways to proceed.  Pairs should work for about 90 minutes, than report out within the group and identify assignments (if any) group members are willing to complete before the next meeting. Please provide a list of these to Jan!

Categories of Environmental Stewardship – there can be overlap between these categories.


PERSONAL STEWARDSHIP
Personal stewardship is individual actions taken to change one’s own relationship with the environment. Examples include:
  1. recycling or other activities to reduce waste
  2. biking, walking, using public transport instead of driving
  3. reducing energy use by turning down the thermostat
  4. water efficient landscaping
  5. spending time outdoors and inviting others to spend time outdoors
  6. participating in a clean-up or similar activity in a community or park
  7. setting an example at work, church or school or with an organization
  8. choosing a job or starting a business for environmental reasons
  9. other

INTELLECTUAL STEWARDSHP
Intellectual stewardship is seeking out environmental information and experiences, developing a coherent understanding of environmental issues, and working to understand the basis of one’s own and other’s beliefs and viewpoints about these issues. Examples include:

  1. visiting parks, nature centers and museums and learning about the resource from displays, interpreters, and the resource itself
  2. attending presentations or workshops or taking courses to learn more about issues
  3. reading and studying to comprehend the scientific arguments for the causes of environmental problems
  4. learning how to distinguish among different sources of information
  5. engaging in (non-judgmental) conversations with other’s about their environmental beliefs
  6. other

ECONOMIC STEWARDSHIP
Economic stewardship is making environmentally responsible purchases or donating money to support the environment. Examples include:

  1. purchasing an efficient car
  2. purchasing a house with a small footprint
  3. purchasing local and/or organic foods
  4. choosing not to buy something
  5. joining or donating to an environmental organization
  6. other

CIVIC STEWARDSHIP
Civic stewardship is engaging in public activities in support of environmental causes or regulations. Examples include:

  1. considering the environment in voting decisions
  2. lobbying or testifying  before commissions, councils or politicians
  3. campaigning for environmentally-friendly laws or candidates
  4. joining, taking a leadership role in, or starting an environmental organization
  5. reporting violations of environmental laws
  6. other



2. Standards/Assessment

Agenda for the November 14, 2013 Meeting

  1. Plan for creating assessments, particularly ones that address attitudes and behavior, starting with HS (to meet No Child Left Inside requirements). Examples
    1. Quiz using Proprofs software (example of what we could set up) - http://www.proprofs.com/quiz-school/story.php?title=NTcyMjMx
    2. Children’s Environmental Attitude and Knowledge Scale  - http://www.meea.org/melab/CHEAKS.pdf
    3. Middle School Environmental Literacy Survey (proprietary)
  2. Proposal for Missouri schools serving as a test population for an on-line National Environmental Literacy Assessment (see the research results below for the team requesting this) requirement:
    1. 10 schools with 6th and 8th grade classes, schools diverse and representative
    2. early April or June 2014
    3. 50 minute test
    4. small stipend fore each classroom $100
    5. 10 volunteers to administer test (they would need training)
    6. $650 for on-line test
  3. Request for schools (F,S,J, Sr) for a High School Assessment, untracked

Background for Work Group Discussion
The National Environmental Literacy Assessment (NELA) Project
http://www.oesd.noaa.gov/outreach/reports/Final_NELA_minus_MSELS_8-12-08.pdf
Instrumentation to evaluate literacy for 6th and 8th grade students that can be used to evaluate program effectiveness using the Middle School Environmental Literacy Survey developed by Hungeford, Volk, Bluhm, McBeth and Marcinkowski.

It measured the items below using multiple choice and Likert-type questions, administered in a 50 minute class period in 48 randomly selected schools across the U.S. (between 800 and 1000 students per grade)


area of environmental literacy

score

ecological knowledge

40/60 points

affect: how you think about environment

40/60 points

affect: you and environmental sensitivity

affect: how you feel about the environment

cognitive: issue identification

25/60 points
analysis>identification>action planning

cognitive: issue analysis

cognitive: action planning

behavior (self-reported)

37/60 points

Max composite score was 240, mean for 6th was 144, for 8th was 140.

NELA Phase 2 – program effectiveness
http://www.oesd.noaa.gov/outreach/reports/NELA_Phase_Two_Report_020711.pdf
Using the instrument validated in Phase 1to assess literacy in schools with established and exemplary EE programs – 64 schools in 27 states, 2000 to 3000 6th , 7th or 8th graders.

area of environmental literacy

score (avg across grades)

ecological knowledge

42/60 points

affect: how you think about environment

42/60 points

affect: you and environmental sensitivity

affect: how you feel about the environment

cognitive: issue identification

26/60 points
analysis>identification>action planning

cognitive: issue analysis

cognitive: action planning

behavior (self-reported)

40/60 points

Max composite score was 240, mean for 6th was 149, for 7th was 152, for 8th was 152.

6th and 8th grades in EE schools significantly higher in all areas except for issue identification.  However, Cohen’s d (a measure of practical or educational significance) indicated no practical difference between random schools and schools with EE programs for 6th graders. Results for 8th graders showed a medium effect size (d = .79) suggesting a beneficial cumulative effect of EE.

NELA Phase 3 (reported at 2013 North American Association for EE meeting)
This phase looked at school, teacher and student characteristics correlated with environmental literacy in 6th, 7th, 8th graders, and at predictive factors

Significant school, teacher and student characteristics
positive  relationship – working in teams (7th & 8th), teacher having social studies degree (6th), multiple certfications (7th), social studies and English classes (6th & 7th), number of in-service workshops in EE (7th) grade, slight or moderate importance of environmental issues to  teacher (6th, 7th, 8th)
negative relationship – being out west (7th); teacher having science degree (6th), having state teacher certification (6th), extreme importance of environmental issues to teacher (6th, 7th, 8th)
irrelevant – student demographics (race, income, ethnicity), school variables

 

Factors that were predictors of actual commitment
6th Grade
verbal commitment p<0.001
environmental sensitivity p<0.001
8th Grade
verbal commitment p<0.001
environmental sensitivity p<0.001 (life experiences, familial sensitivity)
feelings p<0.05  (what do you love/hate about environment)

Minutes March 2013
Jim Jordan, Shaun Bates, Jan Weaver

After a brief discussion of the revised standards, Jim suggested that further efforts be directed at assessments. He was concerned that they not just focus on knowledge but also on attitudes and behavior.

Mo Show-Me Environmental Literacy Standards June 30, 2013 – Version 7

  1. Environmental Principles – Key ideas used as a basis for reasoning or a guide to action in recognizing, understanding and addressing environmental problems and their related issues
    1. Dependence – humans and their societies are dependent upon nature, its laws, its resources and its natural processes
    2. Limits – the physical, chemical and biological limits to earth’s resources and to its ability to provide resources needed for the continuing welfare of humans, their societies, and other living organisms.
    3. Systems Thinking – the relationship between humans, their societies and nature can be understood as a set of interacting systems which are affected by and which can affect each other in both simple and obvious, and complex and subtle ways
    4. Commons – there are no permanent or impermeable barriers to the flow of matter between systems, so the use of natural resources and disposal of waste are, of necessity, the common interest and responsibility of all
    5. Collaboration– developing effective solutions to environmental problems requires the participation of multiple stakeholders, including those causing the problem as well as those harmed by the problem
    6. Sustainability – the responsibility to ensure nature’s capacity to provide critical resources for life and society in the same quantity and quality for future generations
    7. Justice and Equity – the responsibility to create and maintain social mechanisms that promote and ensure the equitable distribution of the costs and benefits of natural resource use
    8. Precaution – the potential for technology intended to improve quality of life to cause unforeseen problems when put into wide-spread use or applied in untested situations due to the complexity of the natural world and human society

 

  1. Systems and Processes of Nature – Natural and Applied Science ideas used as a basis for reasoning or a guide to action in recognizing, understanding and addressing environmental problems and their related issues
    1. Matter and Energy – how matter and energy operate at a molecular level explains the behavior of small scale processes like photosynthesis and oxidation, enables us to use natural resources in diverse ways to meet our needs and provides clues on how to use them wisely
    2. Spheres, Cycles and Flows – how matter and energy operate at a mass level explains the behavior of large scale natural processes like erosion and weather, enables us to plan for or mitigate harmful natural events, and informs human use of resources so that we do not cause or worsen harmful events
    3. Living Organisms – how individual organisms and their populations interact with and depend on matter and energy enables us to make predictions about their behavior in time and space, and informs our understanding of how human activity can benefit or harm them
    4. Communities and Ecosystems – how matter, energy and living organisms interact with each other at local, regional and global scales, enables us to make predictions about their behavior at these scales and informs our understanding of how human activity can benefit or interfere with natural processes
  1. Systems and Processes of Human Societies – Social Science ideas used as a basis for reasoning about or a guide to action in recognizing, understanding and addressing environmental problems and their related issues
    1. Governance – how the founding documents, laws, and regulations of groups are interpreted and enforced, and what that shows about how about how each group views the relationship of humans to one another, to the group, of their group to other groups, of their group to nature, and of how the group can adapt to changing circumstances
    2. Change in Time and Place – how individuals and the groups are shaped by the time and place in which they exist and by how the place changes over time socially, economically, physically and ecologically
    3. Economics – the market forces, regulations, cultural influences and perceptions that affect the kind and rate of use of natural resources and related impacts on natural processes and their associated social and environmental costs
    4. Individuals and Groups – how individuals are shaped by their experiences in informal and formal groups (social, religious, familial, educational, etc) and can in turn transfer beliefs, values, ideas and strategies from one group to others

 

  1. Environments and Resources – The major kinds of environments and critical resources, the roles they play, and how they may be affected by or cause environmental problems
    1. Natural Environments –terrestrial and aquatic communities and ecosystems that are not significantly transformed by human activity, and that play a major role in maintaining natural processes like soil formation, cleaning and storing of freshwater and preserving biodiversity
    2. Agricultural Environments – semi-natural environments managed to produce high levels of a small number of critical renewable resources like food, fiber, wood and fuel for human consumption
    3. Industrial Environments – mines, factories, dams, and similar constructions intended for the extraction and refinement of natural resources, and their manufacture into goods and services, the infrastructure and services that support them, their methods of construction, the ways they are distributed on the landscape and their impacts on their surroundings in the present and in the future
    4. Built Environments –structures from houses to skyscrapers, the infrastructure and services that support them, their methods of construction, the ways they are distributed on the landscape and their impacts on their surroundings in the present and in the future
    5. Critical Resources – fresh water, soil, biotic and genetic diversity, major crop plants, minerals, fossil fuels, etc., and consideration of their abundance, availability and accessibility in time and space, and the economic, social, political and environmental costs of their use
  1. Environmental Problems – The major causes of environmental problems or the kind of harms they can cause
    1. Waste – the large scale solid and/or liquid by-products of human domestic or industrial consumption which may contribute to pollution
    2. Pollution – the liquid, particulate, gaseous, radioactive or microbial by-products of human domestic or industrial consumption that can, even in small amounts, contaminate air, water or soil in ways that harm health, reproduction, development, life or natural processes
    3. Resource Depletion – using resources at rates much greater than their rate of renewal so that the resource is may no longer be available for other species or for future humans
    4. Species Introductions –the introduction of non-native plants, animals, fungi or microbes, whether intentional or accidental, and their impacts on local organisms, habitats and system processes
    5. Human Population Growth – local, regional and global increases in human populations that underlie many local, regional and global environmental problems
    6. Habitat Degradation or Loss – the disappearance of habitats due to loss of key species, invasion by non-native species, extraction of resources, pollution, climate change or conversion to other use
    7. Biodiversity Loss –the decline or disappearance of genes, species, or communities naturally present in an ecosystem due to waste, pollution, resource depletion, species introductions, habitat loss, or other human activity
    8. System Effects- significantly altered natural regional or global cycles, flows and systems due to waste, pollution, resource depletion, species introductions, habitat loss, or other human activity
    9. Human Health or Economic Effects – significant negative impacts on human health or economic systems due to resource depletion, habitat loss, pollution or other human activity

 

  1. Recognizing, Investigating and Solving Environmental Problems – The skills and abilities to recognize or anticipate environmental problems, to use evidence and reasoning to uncover their causes, and to develop and implement effective solutions
    1. Recognizing and Anticipating Environmental Problems – using knowledge of environmental principles, of systems and processes of science and society, and of historical environmental problems to recognize or anticipate potential environmental problems
    2. Investigating Environmental Problems– using reliable, quantitative information, surveys, and/or experiments to develop system models to understand cause and effect relationships of environmental problems and then testing, revising and strengthening the case for a given cause and effect relationship
    3. Solving Environmental Problems – using cause and effect models to identify places to intervene to prevent or reduce a problem, considering the range of possible solutions (education, persuasion, economics, technology, regulations and/or other approaches), comparing costs of solutions (in time, social capital, money and opportunity cost) and their potential effectiveness, and then choosing solutions based on cost and effectiveness
    4. Planning and Implementing Solutions – identifying and collaborating with stakeholders to choose the most effective solutions, and then to identify key steps, when steps have to happen, who needs to do them and the resources needed to accomplish them
    5. Evaluating Effectiveness of Solutions – identifying the environmental changes that would show a solution is effective, devising a way to track or measure those changes, and then using the results to modify the solution to increase its effectiveness or reach or reduce the costs of implementation
  1. Environmentally Responsible Behavior – The ability to recognize a personal stake in environmental problems and related issues and the motivation to develop and use the skills needed to solve them
    1. Taking Responsibility – the understanding that only humans have the capacity to recognize and accept responsibility for the effects of their actions on the environment and the health and well-being of others
    2. Perception of Problems and Issues  – the understanding that perceptions, world views, locus of control and a sense of efficacy are shaped by beliefs, values and past experiences, but that new experiences can change these
    3. Seeking Knowledge and Experiences – an interest in seeking out and engaging in outdoor, nature, environmental or stewardship activities to foster an attachment to nature and an in depth understanding of natural processes and environmental problems
    4. Self Efficacy – the belief in one’s ability to make a difference and the ability and skills to identify and carry out the appropriate actions in a particular case
    5. Taking Action – in response to a deeper understanding of environmental conditions, taking action as appropriate to change personal behavior, change economic behavior, persuade others to take action, use the political process, and/or use legal avenues to improve those conditions

 

 



3. Green Schools

Goal 1: Create a Missouri Green Schools Program

Recommendations

  1. Endorse one or more existing programs that would prepare schools to meet US Dept. of Education Green Ribbon Schools Program (see examples below)
  2. On the Missouri Green Schools website (http://missourigreenschools.org)
    1. provide information and comparisons of endorsed programs
    2. provide recognition of schools’ progress in any program (could be a table linked to an interactive map of MO with school locations as links)
    3. provide resources schools might need – grants, professional development, science expertise (maybe an ask an expert page with FAQs)
  3. Market the Missouri Green Schools program and links to high quality programs

Goal 2: Begin Developing a Marketing Plan for a Missouri Green Schools Program

As you are able and as time permits, go register on Smart Chart at www.smartchart.org
Smart Chart is an interactive on-line platform for non-profits to help them develop marketing plans. It requires step-by-step planning so that marketing decisions are based on a well-thought out foundation –
1. Program Decisions – Broad Goal, Objective (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Time-bound), Decision Maker
2. Context – Internal Scan, External Scan, Defining Organization’s Position
3. Strategic Choices – Audience Target, Audience Readiness, Core Concerns, Theme, Message, Messengers
4. Communications Activities – Tactics, Timeline, Assignments, Budget
5. Measurements of Success – Outputs, Outcomes
6. Reality Check

HOMEWORK: It will be helpful if you pick a small marketing project for your organization and begin working through the program. It might take 1 or 2 hours depending on your background knowledge. This “homework” would enable you to make more headway when we get together as a group. The benefit for you is it might help you generate new ideas for your own organization, agency or business.

MEETING WORK: At the MELAB meeting, agree on a SINGLE specific green school activity and begin developing a plan for reaching a SINGLE specific audience. It will be helpful if at least one person in the group has a laptop on which to work, but I will provide a hard copy worksheet as well. It is unlikely that the group will finish its planning at this meeting, but it should be able to identify some productive ways to proceed.  The group should work for about 90 to 110 minutes, than be ready t0 report out and identify assignments (if any) group members are willing to complete before the next meeting. Please provide a list of these to Jan!

In the course of developing a marketing plan, you will need to think more specifically about what you are offering, either as an individual group or as part of MELAB. So this process will also firm up characteristics and needs for the “product”

Existing Green Schools Programs

National Wildlife Federation – Eco Schools USA - http://www.nwf.org/Eco-Schools-USA.aspx
this is a 7 step program 1. Put an Eco-Action Team together, 2. Do an environmental audit (multiple options) 3. Put a plan together 4. Monitor and Evaluate 5. Link to Curriculum 6. Involve the Community 7. Create your eco-code
Schools can achieve different levels of recognition based on their efforts. Any school completing this could easily fulfill the requirements of the Green Ribbon Schools award.
There are 15 Eco-Schools in Missouri

Center for Green Schools - http://www.centerforgreenschools.org/home.aspx
This is from the US Green Building Council and is aimed at older high school and college students, and mainly focused on the building

PLT - Green Schools - https://www.plt.org/greenschools
This program provides 5 hands-on, student-driven, STEM-aligned  investigations 1. Energy 2. Water 3. School Site 4. Waste and Recycling 5. Environmental Quality.  Students and staff set up green teams, do investigations, and develop and carry out action plans to address school problems. The site provides resources, grants and recognition
There are 17 PLT GreenSchools in Missouri

4. Environmental Leadership and Career Exploration

Goal: Begin Developing a Marketing Plan for Leadership & Career Exploration

As you are able and as time permits, go register on Smart Chart at www.smartchart.org
Smart Chart is an interactive on-line platform for non-profits to help them develop marketing plans. It requires step-by-step planning so that marketing decisions are based on a well-thought out foundation –
1. Program Decisions – Broad Goal, Objective (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Time-bound), Decision Maker
2. Context – Internal Scan, External Scan, Defining Organization’s Position
3. Strategic Choices – Audience Target, Audience Readiness, Core Concerns, Theme, Message, Messengers
4. Communications Activities – Tactics, Timeline, Assignments, Budget
5. Measurements of Success – Outputs, Outcomes
6. Reality Check

HOMEWORK: It will be helpful if you pick a small marketing project for your organization and begin working through the program. It might take 1 or 2 hours depending on your background knowledge. This “homework” would enable you to make more headway when we get together as a group. The benefit for you is it might help you generate new ideas for your own organization, agency or business.

MEETING WORK: At the meeting, members of the career exploration group should agree on a SINGLE specific leadership and career exploration activity and begin developing a plan for reaching a SINGLE specific audience. It will be helpful if at least one person in the group has a laptop on which to work, but I will provide a hard copy worksheet as well. It is unlikely that the group will finish its planning at this meeting, but it should be able to identify some productive ways to proceed.  The group should work for about 90 to 110 minutes, than be ready t0 report out and identify assignments (if any) group members are willing to complete before the next meeting. Please provide a list of these to Jan!

In the course of developing a marketing plan, you will need to think more specifically about what you are offering, either as an individual group or as part of MELAB. So this process will also firm up characteristics and needs for the “product”

Notes from March 12, 2013 Meeting - Leadership & Career Exploration

Two Models

1. Direct Student model:
            Objectives:
Natural Resources Career exploration
            Students gain confidence.  “I can do this.”

            Criteria to meet objectives:

Implementation:
Nobody can do it alone—need collaboration.
Internship program
Important to start natural resource awareness in middle
Student choice & through schools – transparent access for all students

Current Programs:

There is a need for more connections with scientists.
Proficiency awards

2. Content through teachers
Lincoln → env. educ. Workshop—3 day intensive workshop for K-12 educators, teachers follow-up with implementation Plan to receive credits
Schools have Ag content requirement, now have research component
MO trying to get into career pathways model

Next Actions:
Still need to match career exploration piece to formal school accreditation
Biology clearing house – Amber
Also statewide email for counselors
Build list of existing quality career education
Create network b/n educators & science professionals
Valuable to private foundations to know criteria & entities
Develop frame-work ; info reorg of existing info;
Nominate students to Conservation Leadership Corp.


Notes from the Meeting