What is Urban Forestry? Urban Forestry is the comprehensive management of forests and related natural resources in populated areas, from the inner city, to the developing urban fringe, to small outlying communities. For too long, as urban areas have been developed, the forests of urban areas have been depleted or eliminated. We are now seeing an awakening to the needs of trees. Our society must not simply be developed in a technological way, but it must be developed in a natural sense for a balance to be brought to all of our lives.
Students need to interact with nature. They need to know that nature is not a stagnant entity, but is a dynamic living system. Day to day, month to month, year to year, nature is as catalogue of how we have treated ourselves. The quality of nature reflects our priorities as human beings. Nature can be described broadly as any setting from a woodlot to a vacant lot, a football field to a crack in the sidewalk, or a city park to the landscape around a school. Realizing this need, we have to interact and become a part of the forest. Urban Forestry Laboratory Exercises has been designed to reintroduce us to a vital missing part of the urban setting, an Urban Forest.
Society needs experts in many fields, but even more than this, our society needs members with a wealth of information and knowledge, equipped to make informed decisions. This program addresses this need by enhancing the science curriculum with additional resource material. This program illuminates nontraditional career opportunities that will become available as technological Urban Forestry is promoted.
Data gathering is a first step in the understanding of whether a problem exists, or is a figment of our imaginations. The intent of the program is to show how careers of all kinds are changing with technology, and to show the need to assimilate and share information when we develop new ideas. Grouping students to gather data is, in the best sense, a true scientific endeavor. Any good program of analysis and synthesis must have numerous data from which conclusions will be drawn. Growth in our technological society comes with the awareness one has of the interconnectiveness of environmental factors.
High school curriculum
Elementary school curriculum
The Research staff of the Morton Arboretum and the students that helped in the design of the curriculum.
Supported in part by grants from the USDA Forest Service North Central Experiment Station and the USDA Forest Service National Resource Conservation and Education Program.
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