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Illinois Department of Natural Resourses (IDNR) - Workshops
             


The Illinois Department of Natural Resources' (IDNR) Division of Education sponsors educator workshops through the ENTICE program. These workshops offer Professional Development Hours for teachers.

Please register for workshops through the link shown with each workshop description. A nonrefundable registration fee is required. The fee is $10.00 per person plus a $1.00 convenience fee per registration unless stated otherwise in the workshop description. Should you have questions about workshop registration please email (dnr.teachkids@illinois.gov) or call (217-524-4126) the IDNR Division of Education. Should the IDNR cancel a workshop, registrants will be asked if they want to transfer their registration to another ENTICE workshop or receive a refund. Some restrictions apply.

ENTICE workshops are available to teachers, home-schooling educators, nonformal educators and youth-group leaders in Illinois only.


2024-2025 Workshop Schedule | Summer 2024 | Fall 2024 | Winter 2025 |

Summer 2024 | Top of Page |

Course Name:  Illinois Amphibians
Program:  ENTICE
Location: Cache River State Natural Area, Belknap
Date(s):  June 25, 2024
Time(s):  9:00am-3:00pm

 This workshop for educators of grades prekindergarten through 12 will provide an introduction to and educational resources about the wild amphibians in our state. We will focus on the life history of these species, and we will go on a hike to look for amphibians and their signs. We will show you how to use the topic of Illinois wild amphibians to support the teaching of several of the Illinois Early Learning and Development Standards for Science and Next Generation Science Standards with your students. Professional Development Hours are available. Sponsored by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, this workshop is part of the ENTICE (Environment and Nature Training Institute for Conservation Education) program.


Course Name:  Early Childhood and Water Ecosystems
Program:  ENTICE
Location: Kennekuk Environmental Education Center
Date(s):  June 28, 2024
Time(s):  9:00 AM - 3:00 PM

 Join other educators of grades prekindergarten through three as we learn about different types of wetland habitats and explore the fascinating organisms that live in them. We will discuss the importance of water and how animals are adapted to surviving in their aquatic habitats. Explore through some hands-on activities that can be taken back and used in your classroom. Educators of other grade levels are welcome to register and attend the workshop but may need to adapt the materials as appropriate. Supplemental resources will be provided. Professional Development Hours are available.

| Register for this Workshop |


Course Name:  Illinois Fish
Program:  ENTICE
Location: Illinois Department of Natural Resources, Springfield
Date(s):  July 11, 2024
Time(s):  9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

 Explore the fish of Illinois with IDNR fisheries staff as we delve into the wet world they live in. Learn about fish biology, habitats, and adaptions. We will explore fish up close and personal by going hands-on with fish. One-day fishing license is required and will be issued as part of this workshop if a participant does not have one. No fishing experience is required as we will provide. Participants will be taught fishing basics, how to share with students, and how to learn about the environment while fishing. Come dressed for the weather and bring a hat, (we will provide soap and water to clean up afterward). Professional Development Hours are available. Sponsored by the IDNR, this workshop is part of the ENTICE (Environment and Nature Training Institute for Conservation Education) program.

| Register for this Workshop |


Course Name:  Pollinators and the Prairie
Program:  ENTICE
Location: Illinois Department of Natural Resources, Springfield
Date(s):  July 13, 2024
Time(s):  9:00am-3:00pm

 They buzz, flutter, and crawl and play a critical role in maintaining ecosystems and human food supply. Educators of grades kindergarten through eight are invited to register for this workshop to learn about the importance of pollination, the identification of Illinois pollinators, and the challenges they face in the modern world. Educators will take a walk to a pollinator garden on the IDNR Conservation grounds. You will participate in activities and take home many resources to add to your curriculum. Professional Development Hours are available. Professional Development Hours are available. This workshop is part of the ENTICE (Environment and Nature Training Institute for Conservation Education) program from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

| Register for this Workshop |


Course Name:  Animal Architects
Program:  ENTICE
Location: Hoover Forest Preserve, Yorkville
Date(s):  July 20, 2024
Time(s):  9:00am-3:00pm

 The world is full of objects built by animals to help them survive. Attend this workshop for educators of grades prekindergarten through three and learn about beaver dams, spider webs, mussel shells, bird nests and so many other amazing objects constructed by animals in our local environment. Challenge the engineering skills of your students to create similar structures by using the resources provided and activities presented at the workshop. All educators are welcome to register for the workshop, but the information may need to be adapted, as appropriate. Professional Development Hours are available. This workshop is part of the ENTICE (Environment and Nature Training Institute for Conservation Education) program from the IDNR.

| Register for this Workshop |


Course Name:  Illinois Dragonflies and Damselflies
Program:  ENTICE
Location: Cache River State Natural Area, Belknap
Date(s):  July 23, 2024
Time(s):  9:00am-3:00pm

 Join us for this workshop about the dragonflies and damselflies of Illinois! We will be working in the field and in the lab as we discuss the identification, life history and behaviors of these fascinating invertebrates, both as aquatic nymphs and as adults. Although targeted to educators of grades six through 10, educators of other grade levels are welcome to register for the workshop, but the information may need to be adapted as appropriate. You'll be provided with several resources to use with your students. Professional Development Hours are available. This workshop is part of the ENTICE (Environment and Nature Training Institute for Conservation Education) program from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

| Register for this Workshop |


Course Name:  Coyote Track
Program:  ENTICE
Location: Illinois Department of Natural Resources, Springfi
Date(s):  July 30, 2024
Time(s):  9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

 Explore Coyote Track interactive visualization tool. This online site centers around coyote ecology and behavior related to data collected from radio-collared coyotes in urban and rural areas of Illinois. Using real data, this workshop will guide participants through the visualization data tool and standard-based lessons that support the unit. Participants will learn about how and why scientists are studying coyotes in Illinois including learning about telemetry and how the information is gathered. The workshop is for teachers of Illinois high school and middle school students. Professional Development Hours are available. Sponsored by the IDNR, this workshop is part of the ENTICE (Environment and Nature Training Institute for Conservation Education) program.

| Register for this Workshop |


Course Name:  Illinois Pollinators
Program:  ENTICE
Location: Kennekuk Environmental Education Center, Danville
Date(s):  August 31, 2024
Time(s):  August 31, 2024

 They buzz, flutter, and crawl and play a critical role in maintaining ecosystems and human food supply. Educators of grades kindergarten through eight are invited to register for this workshop to learn about the importance of pollination, the identification of Illinois pollinators, and the challenges they face in the modern world. Educators will take a walk to a pollinator garden on the visitor center grounds. You will participate in activities and take home many resources to add to your curriculum. Professional Development Hours are available.

| Register for this Workshop |


Fall 2024 | Top of Page |

Course Name:  Illinois Pollinators
Program:  ENTICE
Location: Heller Nature Center, Highland Park
Date(s):  Sept 7, 2024
Time(s):  9:00am-3:00pm

 They buzz, flutter, and crawl and play a critical role in maintaining ecosystems and human food supply. Educators of grades kindergarten through eight are invited to register for this workshop to learn about the importance of pollination, the identification of Illinois pollinators, and the challenges they face in the modern world. Educators will take a walk to a pollinator garden on the visitors? center grounds. You will participate in activities and take home many resources to add to your curriculum. Professional Development Hours are available.

| Register for this Workshop |


Course Name:  Pollinator Gardens
Program:  ENTICE
Location: Chicago Botanic Garden, Glencoe
Date(s):  September 14, 2024
Time(s):  9:00am-3:00pm

 Pollinator populations are in decline, but you and your students can take actions to help them. By planting a native pollinator garden at your school, you can provide food and shelter for pollinators and a place of learning for students of all ages. We will discuss what makes a successful pollinator garden and how to maintain it. Connections to learning standards will also be provided. We will show you how to apply for an Illinois Schoolyard Habitat Action Grant to help fund your project, too. This workshop is targeted to educators of grades prekindergarten through 12. Supplemental resources will be provided. Professional Development Hours are available. This workshop is part of the ENTICE (Environment and Nature Training Institute for Conservation Education) program from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

| Register for this Workshop |


Course Name:  Birds and Butterflies
Program:  ENTICE
Location: Morton Arboretum, Lisle
Date(s):  September 21, 2024
Time(s):  9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

 Soar on down to The Morton Arboretum this summer and gather ideas, resources, and activities for your classroom. This workshop will help educators bring the classroom outdoors and connect with green spaces in their community. Participants will identify birds, track butterflies, investigate the role of both in different habitats, and learn to utilize the natural world to bring science curriculum to life. Although targeted to teachers of pre-K through second grade, all educators are welcome to register for the workshop, but the information may need to be adapted, as appropriate. Your curriculum will 'take flight' with the resources you take home!

| Register for this Workshop |


Course Name:  Illinois Urban Wildlife
Program:  ENTICE
Location: Dana-Thomas House, Springfield
Date(s):  September 28, 2024
Time(s):  9:00am-3:00pm

 Wildlife is all around us, in large urban areas or small towns! Educators of grades prekindergarten through four are invited to participate as we learn where to look for urban wildlife, what you can expect to find, how to identify species, and how to improve urban wildlife habitat at your school. Natural resources professionals and educators will instruct about these topics and more, including how species adapt to the urban environment, how humans affect urban wildlife, and how to use urban wildlife topics as the foundation for locally relevant, place-based teaching. Receive supplemental educational materials to enhance your teaching.

| Register for this Workshop |


Course Name:  Aquatic Biodiversity
Program:  ENTICE
Location: Red Oaks Nature Center, North Aurora
Date(s):  October 5, 2024
Time(s):  9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

 Join us for this workshop that will have you sampling and observing the components of four aquatic habitats at Red Oak Nature Center: river; lake; stream; and spring. We will discuss what the results show and talk about how to incorporate this type of activity into your curriculum to support Next Generation Science Standards. Although targeted to teachers of grades five through eight, teachers of other grade levels are welcome to register for and attend the workshop but may need to adapt the materials, as appropriate. Professional Development Hours are available. This workshop is part of the ENTICE (Environment and Nature Training Institute for Conservation Education) program from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources

| Register for this Workshop |


Course Name:  Wildlife Basics-Birds
Program:  ENTICE
Location: Hickory Knolls Discovery Center, St. Charles
Date(s):  October 12, 2024
Time(s):  9:00am-3:00pm

 This workshop for educators of grades prekindergarten through 12 will provide an introduction to and educational resources about the wild birds in our state. We will focus on the life history of these species, and we will go on a hike to look for birds and their signs. We will show you how to use the topic of 'Illinois wild birds' to support the teaching of several of the Illinois Early Learning and Development Standards for science and Next Generation Science Standards with your students. Professional Development Hours are available. Sponsored by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, this workshop is part of the ENTICE (Environment and Nature Training Institute for Conservation Education) program.

| Register for this Workshop |


Course Name:  Introducing Young Children to the Nature of Fall
Program:  ENTICE
Location: Pickerill-Pigott Forest Preserve, Yorkville
Date(s):  October 19, 2024
Time(s):  9:00am-3:00pm

 Fall is a great season for young children to explore nature! There is so much to see and learn. Join us to discover what nature can tell us in fall. We'll take a hike to put our knowledge to work and will feature the Field Trip Pack from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR). We'll be incorporating several topics. Although targeted to grades prekindergarten through three, all educators are welcome to register for the workshop, but the information may need to be adapted, as appropriate. You'll take away numerous resources to use with young children when learning about fall nature. Professional Development Hours are available. This workshop is part of the ENTICE (Environment and Nature Training Institute for Conservation Education) program from the IDNR.

| Register for this Workshop |


Course Name:  Illinois Reptiles and Amphibians
Program:  ENTICE
Location: Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, Chicago
Date(s):  October 26, 2024
Time(s):  9:00am-3:00pm

 Illinois is home to a variety of slimy and scaly animals which inhabit all types of sensitive ecosystems. Educators of grades prekindergarten through eight will learn about their unique life histories, features and behaviors, and will take a hike around the Nature Museum to look for examples in our urban habitat. We will observe living and preserved specimens, provide you with resources and activities, and discuss regulations regarding keeping these animals in the classroom. Teachers of other grade levels are welcome to register for this workshop but may need to adapt the materials for their students, as appropriate.

| Register for this Workshop |


Course Name:  Prying into Prions
Program:  ENTICE
Location: Starved Rock State Park, Utica
Date(s):  November 2, 2024
Time(s):  November 2, 2024

 Prying into Prions: Investigating Chronic Wasting Disease is a supplemental, educational unit for high school students that assists in studying prion diseases, including chronic wasting disease. Explore and learn about transmissible spongiform encephalopathies by examining the role of proteins in organisms, the chemistry and properties of proteins, the genetic processes that create proteins, and how proteins can become pathogenic. Study how chronic wasting disease affects Illinois' white-tailed deer herd and what control measures are being taken.

| Register for this Workshop |


Course Name:  Wild Illinois History
Program:  ENTICE
Location: Red Oak Nature Center, North Aurora
Date(s):  November 9, 2024
Time(s):  November 9, 2024

 Wild Illinois History is a self-contained teaching unit for educators of grades four through eight. The online interactive student activity and lessons are designed to supplement Illinois history instruction by focusing on information regarding early exploration and settlement, riparian and geography in what was to become Illinois and the uses of wildlife by Indigenous peoples and the trappers who came from Europe. The activity also highlights the conservation movement and how it affects views and uses of wildlife today. Educators of other grade levels are welcome to register and attend the workshop but may need to adapt the materials as appropriate. Supplemental resources will be provided. Professional Development Hours are available. This workshop is part of the ENTICE (Environment and Nature Training Institute for Conservation Education) program from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

| Register for this Workshop |


Winter 2025 | Top of Page |

Course Name:  Wait List Registration
Program:  ENTICE
Location: IDNR Springfield
Date(s):  December 31, 2025
Time(s):  9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

 Do not register in this workshop block unless instructed to do so by IDNR Education personnel.

| Register for this Workshop |


Course Name:  Coyote Track
Program:  ENTICE
Location: Chicago Botanic Gardens
Date(s):  February 15, 2025
Time(s):  9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

 Explore Coyote Track interactive visualization tool. This online site centers around coyote ecology and behavior related to data collected from radio-collared coyotes in urban and rural areas of Illinois. Using real data, this workshop will guide participants through the visualization data tool and standard-based lessons that support the unit. Participants will learn about how and why scientists are studying coyotes in Illinois including learning about telemetry and how the information is gathered. The workshop is for teachers of Illinois high school and middle school students. Professional Development Hours are available. Sponsored by the IDNR, this workshop is part of the ENTICE (Environment and Nature Training Institute for Conservation Education) program.

| Register for this Workshop |


ABOUT THE WORKSHOPS
ENTICE workshops provide natural resources information, instructional methods and supplemental educational materials. When incorporated into lessons with students, the materials provided encourage and promote stewardship of our state’s natural resources. ENTICE also offers participants the opportunity to network with other educators in a friendly, cooperative, learning environment.

Illinois ENTICE provides the following items for participants.

  • free workshop/resource materials
  • meals during the workshop
  • opportunities to connect with natural resources and education professionals
  • lesson plans and activities correlated to the Illinois Learning Standards
  • for teachers, Professional Development Hours.

REGISTRATION INFORMATION
Workshops are open to all educators and are designed for targeted grade levels. Maximum enrollment for each course is 30 participants.


Have questions? Contact the IDNR Division of Education at dnr.teachkids@illinois.gov or 217-524-4126.

 

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