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Current Program Information 2016-17

eii students working on a class projectEnvironmental Issues Instruction (eii) and Upper Iowa University presents:

Food, Farming, and Climate Change

This is an interdisciplinary, undergraduate or graduate level college credit course for all teachers K-12 and other environmental educators.

Receive two college credits for a total cost of $250. This includes the college credit, food, lodging, and teaching materials. This is made possible by grant funding through REAP-CEP.

Two separate workshop dates and locations are available:

First Workshop:  Mt. Vernon Sleep Inn--February 24-26 and April 28-29, 2017
NOTE: The Mt. Vernon session is full. There is plenty of room in the Marshalltown session to be held June 28-30. Please contact Dr. Barbara Ehlers at ehlersb@uiu.edu with questions.

Second Workshop: Marshalltown Best Western
June 28, 29, 30, 2017 and April 7, 2018
(Must attend these dates to receive credit)


In the 2012 Report to the President on Agricultural Preparedness and Agriculture Research Enterprise, several new challenges to agriculture were outlined; risks associated with emerging threats such as new pests and pathogens, the increasing importance of water quality and quantity, the environmental impacts of agriculture on human and environmental health, the effect of agriculture on native biodiversity, the degradation of soil quality, soil erosion, carbon and mineral depletion, reduced water infiltration, increased reliance on chemical fertilizers, and the adaptation to a changing climate.

The major scientific agencies of the United States — including the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) — agree that climate change is occurring and that humans are contributing to it. In 2010, the National Research Council concluded that "Climate change is occurring, is very likely caused by human activities, and poses significant risks for a broad range of human and natural systems". Many independent scientific organizations have released similar statements, both in the United States and abroad. This doesn't necessarily mean that every scientist sees eye to eye on each component of the climate change problem, but broad agreement exists that climate change is happening and is primarily caused by excess greenhouse gases from human activities.

Scientists are still researching a number of important questions, including exactly how much Earth will warm, how quickly it will warm, and what the consequences of the warming will be in specific regions of the world. Scientists continue to research these questions so society can be better informed about how to plan for a changing climate. However, enough certainty exists about basic causes and effects of climate change to justify taking actions that reduce future risks. (https://www.epa.gov/climatechange/climate-change-basic-information)


Should action be taken to address climate change?

The eii model utilizes:

  • Next Generation Science Standards
  • STEM-Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics
  • Project-Based Teaching and Learning
  • Framework for K-12 Science Cross-Cutting Concepts
  • Interdisciplinary Teaching and Learning
  • Iowa Core Characteristics of Effective Instruction
  • Differentiated Instruction
  • The Learning Cycle

Thematic Integration of:

  • Environmental Education
  • Science
  • Technology
  • Engineering
  • Mathematics
  • Reading
  • Social Studies
  • Language Arts
  • Fine Arts
  • Physical Education


EDU 461/561: Environmental Issues Instruction: Food, Farming, and Climate Change

Two hours of undergraduate or graduate credit from Upper Iowa University

Course Expectations:

  • Attend two weekend sessions:
  • Modeling of instructional levels
  • Sharing the teaching experience
  • Develop and teach unit between initial and update sessions
  • Give evidence of student action
  • Administer student assessment (pre-post)
  • Prepare brief written report of experience

Instructional Model:

  • I - Issue Analysis
  • II - Ecological Foundations
  • III - Energy Issues
  • IV - Responsible Environmental Action

Instructional Support:

  • Resource materials for integrating disciplines
  • Provide consultation and materials for action projects
  • E-mail and telephone contacts

Institutional Support:

  • REAP (Resource Enhancement and Protection)
  • Upper Iowa University-Andres School of Education
  • Iowa State University Extension Education
  • University of Iowa, Occupational and Environmental Health
  • Integrated Roadside Vegetation Management
  • Tallgrass Prairie Center– UNI

Instructional Staff

Dr. Barb Ehlers, eii director 
Associate Professor of Education
Upper Iowa University

Julie Delaney, Associate Director
Principal, St. Paul the Apostle
Davenport, Iowa

Jeff Monteith, Associate Director
K-12 Extended Learning Program Teacher
New Hampton Schools
New Hampton, Iowa