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Kids in the Woods blog
posted May 31, 2018 03:19 AM by doutlaw

Check out our new Kids in the Woods blog for updates on our project with Westwood Middle School, the University of Florida, Gainesville Parks, Recreation, and Cultural Affairs, and Alachua County Environmental Protection Department. We will also be providing information about other actvities related to children and nature.

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Connecting Kids to the Hogtown Creek Watershed in Gainesville, Florida
posted May 31, 2018 03:19 AM by doutlaw

InterfaceSouth and local partners, including the University of Florida’s School of Forest Resources and Conservation, the Gainesville Parks, Recreation, and Cultural Affairs, and Alachua County Environmental Protection, received funding from this year’s Forest Service More Kids in the Woods (MKIW) cost share funding opportunity to engage middle school students in outdoor science learning activities in Gainesville’s Hogtown Creek Watershed. The MKIW program supports activities and programs designed to spark curiosity about nature and promote learning through applications of science, technology, engineering and mathematics principles.

Project partners will collaborate with Westwood science teachers to conduct outdoor science learning activities and service learning projects within the nearby watershed. Partners will also organize a school camp out and participate in career day events and science fairs. Science middle school teachers will be provided professional development opportunities through a train-the-teacher workshop. Project successes, materials and information will be shared locally, regionally and nationally through our combined partner networks.

To learn more about the Forest Service’s More Kids in the Woods program and 2013 cost share funding recipients visit:

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El Yunque Ecosystem Services
posted May 31, 2018 03:19 AM by doutlaw

El Yunque National Forest, located in eastern Puerto Rico, provides a variety of ecosystem services—including clean air, water, and recreation—that are essential to the well-being of people in communities surrounding the forest and beyond. Rapid changes in urban and built-up areas in eastern Puerto Rico have put El Yunque under high pressure for urban development. These changes can alter forest processes and functions, and thus the services provided by the forest. Zoning regulations for guiding urban expansion and minimizing its effects on the forest have had limited success; much of the urban expansion during the past decades has occurred within zoning districts where urban uses were not originally planned. This limited success has resulted from poor enforcement of zoning regulations; it could also be a result of the implementation of top-down models of land use and resource management that often excludes people at different levels, such as local communities and other stakeholders.

To begin to address these issues, we developed a study that incorporated the views and perspectives of different stakeholders regarding the ecosystem services provided by El Yunque. We developed a methodology that integrates different research methods and participatory techniques. The techniques can help natural resource managers, specialists, and researchers of other national and state forests better understand peoples’ knowledge and awareness of ecosystem services and the factors affecting these services. The techniques and the products resulting from them can be used to assist in the management and planning of land use, ecosystem services, and natural resources in general.

To learn more about this project click here.

To read the latest issue of our Leaves of Change newsletter that focused on this project click here.

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U.S. Forest Service: Unplugging America's Children
posted May 31, 2018 03:19 AM by doutlaw

Remember the feeling of wind brushing against your cheek or the momentary gasp as your boot slid on a big, slippery rock? Or, what about trees bursting with brilliant fall colors or the chirp, hoot and rustle in the woods that made you ask, ‘Who’s there?’ For many adults these memories are the stuff of their American childhood – rites of passage recalled with great affection and humor. For many, these experiences form the basis of a lifetime of enjoyment and caring for America’s great outdoors. That’s why the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) wants to help make playing in nature outdoors fun for kids again.

Since 1905, USFS has prided itself on educating the public about the Nation’s natural resources, including the 193 million acres of forests and grasslands it manages. Today that legacy continues as the Forest Service’s Conservation Education Office supports a wide variety of programs directed at pre-K to 12th grade students, their parents and educators. Programs draw from work performed by Agency experts who provide guidance in science, land management and recreation, which serves as the foundation for environmental literacy efforts. USFS also promotes partnerships with organizations that support its mission.

Read the full article and learn more about the Forest Service’s educational programs by clicking here.

To view archived InterfaceSouth Posts click here

The Arbor Day Foundation's Backyard Woods program
posted May 31, 2018 03:19 AM by doutlaw

The Arbor Day Foundation’s Backyard Woods program is designed to assist landowners in conserving, beautifying, and utilizing their small woodland plot. The program’s guide book includes detailed fact sheets on topics such as planning, wildfire protection, tree care, forest products, and wildlife. The “Backyard Woods: Bring You Vision to Life” guidebook is available for free download online in PDF, or a print copy can be ordered from the Arbor Day Foundation for $4.95 and includes a CD-ROM with twelve tip sheets. The Backyard Woods program is ideal for landowners with one to ten acres.

To learn more about the Backyard Woods program visit:

To view or order the “Backyard Woods: Bring Your Vision to Life” guidebook visit:

Changing Roles Webinar Series 2011
posted May 31, 2018 03:19 AM by doutlaw

This 4-part webinar series will focus on the theme "Considering Natural Resources in Land-Use Decision Making Processes." Natural resource professionals often refer to "being at the table" in reference to their participation in multi-stakeholder processes such as land-use planning. Therefore we use the same language is used in the session titles of this series. Each session will address the theme from a different perspective.

Session Details:

October 12th, 12:00-1:00 pm EST

Why should we be at the table?Natural resource managers' perspective
(Susan Stein, Private Forest Studies Coordinator, US Forest Service)

October 17th, 12:00 pm-1:00 pm EST

Why we need you at the table? and How do you get to the table? Land-use planners' perspectives (Craig Diamond, Environmental Economist, Consultant)

November 10th, 12:00-1:00 pm EST

What happens when we are at the table together? A case study from Sumner County, Tennessee (Dwight Barnett, Area Forester, Tennessee Division of Forestry and Michael Briggs, Transportation Planner, Metropolitan Nashville Planning Department)

November 18th, 12:00-1:00 pm EST

What do you do when people start throwing food at the table? A conflict management perspective (Steve Smutko, Spicer Chair of Collaborative Practice, University of Wyoming, Department of Agriculture and Applied Economics)

Who should participate?
Natural resource professionals who want to learn more about wildland-urban interface issues, opportunities, and strategies.

Can I receive continuing education credit?
The CR webinar series provides a convenient, free professional development option for busy professionals who want to earn continuing education credits without paying travel expenses or taking time off work. Participants who log in to the liver session may be eligible for Society of American Foresters and International Society of Aboriculture continuing education credits. The archived sessions can be viewed for continuing education credits for up to one year.

Click here for session details and for more information on how to access the webinar. You can also earn more about the Changing Roles Professional Development program by clicking here.

Leaves of Change Issue 9: Cultural Issues in Forest Management
posted May 31, 2018 03:19 AM by doutlaw

In this issue, we highlight a research project headed by John Schelhas (SRS-4952 natural resource sociologist) that is helping to describe social networks among African American forest landowners as well as forest and land values and identities, forest practices, and forest histories. The findings of this project are helping to illuminate a crucial disconnect in forestry and extension efforts, and have subsequently led to outreach efforts designed specifically to connect with underserved landowner groups.

Click here to view this issue. To view the accompanying case study insert click here.

To view past issues of Leaves of Change click here.

Selecting Firewise Shrubs to Reduce Wildfire Risk
posted May 31, 2018 03:19 AM by doutlaw

This new publication, jointly developed by InterfaceSouth and the Unversity of Florida IFAS, can help you select shrubs for your landscape, particularly for homes in the southern United States.

To view this publication, click here.

May 21st is National Walk in the Woods Day
posted May 31, 2018 03:19 AM by doutlaw

Saturday, May 21st is National Walk in the Woods Day, an event in celebration of the International Year of the Forests and coordinated by the American Forest Foundation. Consider helping youth and adults alike to discover a forest and learn about its importance by participating in, or leading, a “walk in the woods.”

Click here to learn more about this event. To learn more about the International Year of the Forests click here.

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April is Let's G.O. Month! Get Outside and Enjoy!
posted May 31, 2018 03:19 AM by doutlaw

The Children & Nature Network has designated all of April as Let's G.O. (Get Outdoors) month, with the goal of bringing together intergenerational groups of people to get outside together to be active, have fun, and connect with nature.  Events are occuring in a variety of locations, from coast to coast. Find an event in your area at:

Learn more at


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