Palm Beach County

February 26 - March 14, 2020
Late registration closes at 9:00am on February 24, 2020.
(Course Code: I20-03)

Classroom Facility Information

Loggerhead Marinelife Center
14200 US-1, Juno Beach, FL 33408

Gumbo Limbo Nature Center
1801 N Ocean Blvd, Boca Raton, FL  33432

Mounts Botanical Garden: Building Auditorium
531 N Military Trl, West Palm Beach, FL 33415

A.R.M. Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge
10216 Lee Rd, Boynton Beach, FL 33472

Instructors Information

Lead and Point of Contact: Chris Lockhart, Field Biologist, Plant Ecologist and Environmental Educator
Organization: Habitat Specialists, Inc.
Phone: 561-738-1179

Lead: Amanda Thompson, St. Lucie County Environmental Resources
Associate: Molly Sims, Advanced Master Naturalist

Tentative Course Agenda

Day 1 Wednesday, February 26, 2020 (Loggerhead Marinelife Center)
6:00pm - 7:15pm Introductions, Pre-test, ice breaker, objectives and overview
7:15pm - 9:00pm Interpretive Presentation Fundamentals PPT, Case studies
The difference between Environmental Ed and Interpretation?          
Work in twos or threes, select a theme, Worksheet activities, create a
short presentation
Homework Handout

Day 2 Saturday, February 29, 2020 (Gumbo Limbo Nature Center)
8:30am - 10:00am Group project time
10:00am - 11:30am Group Presentations, Discuss, wrap-up, comments
11:30am - 12:00pm Lunch on your own
12:00pm - 3:00pm Interpretive Displays PPT, Case Studies
Personal vs. non-personal interpretation
3:00pm - 3:30pm Break
3:30pm - 4:30pm Review visitor center displays and comments/ favorites
4:30pm - 5:00pm Discuss findings; Relate to homework activity; announcements

  Independent Study on your own
  Handout/selfie Interpretive Displays activity at a nature center
– Complete and submit by March 10th

Day 3 Thursday, March 5, 2020 (Mounts Building Auditorium)
6:00pm - 8:30pm Review Principles of Interpretation
Guided interpretation programs PPT, Case Studies
8:30pm - 9:00pm Activity sheets, Group project time, Select theme
Reminders for field trip at Loxahatchee NWR, announcements

Day 4 Saturday, March 14, 2020 (A.R.M. Loxahatchee NWR)
8:30am - 10:00am Guided Interpretive Program field trip
10:00am - 12:00pm Review Tilden’s principles, key components for a good interpretive walk;
Activity sheets, Group project time
12:00pm - 1:00pm Working lunch
Visit/review exhibits
1:00pm - 1:30pm Guest speaker, Serena Rinker – interactive program
1:30pm - 3:30pm Group presentations and peer critique –
What was theme, message, how to strengthen
3:30pm - 4:30pm Post-test and evaluations; Butterfly walk
Graduation; Group photo!!

Environmental Interpretation Class Guidelines

Classroom Presentations: “Classroom” location will vary each week. In the classroom, it might be very warm or very cool—please, dress accordingly

If you ordered an USB, bring a computer with full battery charge to see your course material.

Locations & Times may change due to unforeseen circumstances. It is the student’s responsibility to verify field information. Transportation and lunches are not included.

Course Time Schedule does include approximate travel time.

Attendance Policy:

  • You cannot miss more than 4.75 hours (20% of the 24 contact hours) This is a FMNP policy and cannot be modified by the Instructor.
  • To receive certification, the 4.75 hours or less missed must be made up by completing an assignment of equal time and content. Approval of the Instructor is required.
  • If total hours missed exceeds 4.75 hours, certification is not possible regardless of material made up.
  • All absences should be discussed with the instructor in advance. In case of emergencies, please notify Instructor as soon as possible.

Student Carpooling is Suggested and is up to students to arrange.

Flexible Schedule:
• The schedule times listed are as close as possible, but we need you to be flexible.
• We probably will not get out early; however, we may run late. We will try to stick to the listed times, but please arrange your schedule so that the class can be flexible.

Food & Drinks! Please, absolutely no polypropylene (Styrofoam) containers.

Cell Phones: They are fine to use outside of class. Please don’t allow them to ring during classroom sessions or on field trips.

Field Recommendations:
Weather Cooperating, you will be Applying Class Concepts to On-site Examples.

  • It might be hot or cool indoors and outdoors—please, dress accordingly.
  • Required: Always Wear Close-toed Shoes. Field trails are not always level or easy to travel; some plants have thorns; there may be poison ivy; fire ants, etc. Open-toed shoes are not acceptable in the field. 
  • Be aware that typically you will be experiencing a variety of environments. It could rain; we might get gooey, dirty, muddy, or wet. For your comfort, always bring rain gear and a spare change of clothes.
  • Wear: layered clothes, long sleeves and pants (protects against thorns, cuts, and bites); appropriate closed-toe foot wear (no flip flops or sandals); hat; sunglasses; sunscreen, insect repellent (especially feet/legs).
  • Suggested Field Items: snacks, notepad and pen, binoculars, insect repellent, change of clothes.
  • There are insects (including mosquitoes), spiders, and snakes outdoors. Hopefully, we will see these beautiful creatures. Always watch where you are putting your hands and feet. Use your brain before your body.
  • Don’t wear perfume/cologne or use perfumed soap/body lotion before going out in the field. This may attract more unwanted buzzing invertebrates known as mosquitoes, midges (no see ‘ems) and flies.

Donate to FMNP Endowment

We are building a legacy of informed citizens to promote awareness, understanding, and respect of Florida's natural ecosystems. To ensure we continue inspiring conservation education and action for decades to come, we need to raise $2 million to establish an endowment for an FMNP Program Leader in perpetuity.

Ripples spread when a single pebble is dropped. Please click here if you wish to contribute to the FMNP Endowment Fund, or contact Dr. Main at to discuss options for a major gift.

Thank you for your ongoing actions to help conserve Florida’s environment so future generations may enjoy it!

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