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Teaching outdoor skills courses scheduled this summer

  • 1/17/2023 11:43:00 AM
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The Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is sponsoring four courses on how to teach outdoor skills for K–12 teachers, naturalists and other educators this summer.

Hands-on sessions (indoors and outside) will provide introductory skills instruction and development, teaching materials and lesson plans. The cost of each course varies. Create an account on the AEALearning website to find the cost, registration deadline and requirements for each course.

  • Introduction to Basic Outdoor Skills, June 27-28 at Kent Park Conservation Center, Oxford or July 11-12 at Swan Lake Education Center, Carroll
    Participants will receive introductory instruction and lesson plans for planning outings, map reading, hiking, paddling, fishing, archery, campfire cooking and basic firearm safety/shooting. Registration fee includes meals (lunch and dinner on day 1 and lunch on day 2) and materials.
  • Fish Iowa! Basic Fishing, June 12 at Wapsi River Environmental Education Center, Dixon or June 14 at Bigelow Park, Salix
    This blended course will acquaint participants with the Fish Iowa! Basic Spincasting teaching module and a variety of other resources to teach fishing in a variety of settings. Participants will learn to teach fish identification, fishing locations, casting techniques and cleaning and cooking fish. Participants will experience lake/pond fishing (including fishing from a kayak and/or canoe) and be introduced to  a variety of Aquatic WILD activities. Peer teaching and small group work will be used to develop appropriate teaching strategies for individual teaching situations. Individuals who register for this class must complete online coursework prior to the in-person session.
  • Archery, June 28 at Olofson Shooting Range, Polk City
    Participants will learn basic archery and archery instructional skills, as well as maintenance of archery equipment. Participants will receive National Archery in the Schools instructional materials. Individuals who register for this class will receive information via email to register for the "Basic Archery Instructor" online course. (Completion required between June 21-27, 2023.)
  • Hunter Education, July 10-11 at Olofson Shooting Range, Polk City
    Learn the requirements to become a certified hunter education instructor, including firearm handling and safety, hunter education class requirements and policies and procedures. Registration fee includes lunch, supplies and teaching materials. Bring a laptop or tablet to access online resources.

Educators can earn license renewal for all six courses. Graduate credit is also available for the Introduction to Basic Outdoor Skills and Fish Iowa! Basic Fishing sessions.

Register for the how to teach outdoor skills courses through the AEALearning website at You will be asked to create an account if you do not already have one. After you login, enter “outdoor skills” in the course search to find registration information for each course.