Natural Resources


Course Description

This course covers topics relative to the conservation of our natural resources. Students will study soil formation, erosion and erosion control. Water supply, use, management, pollution, and use planning. Forestry, forestry products, management, fires and control. Fish and wildlife, game management, marine and freshwater fishery management, aquaculture. Outdoor recreation. Fossil fuels, alternative energy sources, management. Nuclear power. Metals and Minerals, careers in Natural Resources. Students will also study the National FFA Organization and Supervised Agricultural Experience (SAE) and parliamentary procedure.  This is a full year course.

The text for this class is Managing Our Natural Resources, Dougherty and Camp, published by ITP.

Instructional Philosophy:

Agricultural Education enables students to learn facts, analyze problems, and have an opportunity to gain self-confidence.  This confidence is a gradually developing process.  Each student is given the opportunity to achieve individual accomplishments while working in small groups and on individual projects.  The self-confidence that students acquire helps them in all phases of their lives.  With confidence in themselves, they are able to make wiser decisions that have been reasoned out.

The relevant skills taught in Agricultural Education are of vital importance to students of both sexes and of all academic and economic levels.  Every student is involved in some phase of agriculture, regardless of his or her paid occupation.  Students are given the opportunity to acquire facts and develop competencies and apply these facts through their own Supervised Agricultural Experience and to develop themselves into competent community leaders through their involvement in the National FFA Organization.

Course Goals

1. Define the functions of soils
2. Describe major components of soil
3. Describe the soil formation process
4. Determine soil structure
5. Determine soil characteristics based on color
6. Determine the texture of soil
7. Identify the horizons of a soil profile
8. Evaluate moisture carrying capacity of soils
9. Determine land capability classes
10. Evaluate land using evaluation card
11. Describe types of soil erosion
12. Evaluate water erosion control methods
13. Evaluate wind erosion control methods
14. Calculate soil loss using erosion loss equation
15. Develop a land use plan
16. Interpret a soil survey map
17. Take a soil sample
18. Determine soil pH
19. Use soil test equipment to measure nutrients
20. Prepare soil test information forms
21. Describe purpose of Soil Conservation Districts
22. Identify functions of SCS
1. List agencies responsible for outdoor recreation
2. Identify recreational needs of communities
3. Lead or guide recreational activities
4. Select recreational sites
5. Prepare a site development plan
6. Design a nature walk
7. Administer CPR
8. Apply basic emergency first aid
9. Demonstrate use of a compass
10. Find locations using a map
1. Illustrate predator and prey population
2. Identify fur wildlife species
3. Identify species of fish
4. Identify game birds/non-game birds/waterfowl
5. Define endangered and threatened species
6. Evaluate food sources of wildlife
7. Create a food web
8. Take random population sample of wildlife
9. Identify fur wildlife habitats
10. Identify plant growth problems in ponds
11. Plan fish habitat improvements
12. Determine wildlife land carry capacity
13. Determine carrying capacity of ponds
14. Plan wildlife habitat improvements
15. Identify techniques used in raising game birds
16. Demonstrate safe hunting practices
17. Interpret game laws
18. Identify wildlife trapping methods
19. Prepare specimens for tanning
1. Define a forest community
2. Identify parts of a tree
3. Classify trees by deciduous or coniferous
4. Identify tree species/forest plants
5. Design a shelterbelt
6. Prepare soil medium for tree planting
7. Plant trees from seed
8. Prepare seedbed for transplanting
9. Transplant tree seedlings
10. List cultural practices used in tree production
11. Identify and control insects affecting trees
12. Identify and control diseases affecting trees
13. Identify and control weeds in tree plots
14. Calculate board feet in a tree
15. Measure tree height and diameter breast height
16. Determine growth rate and age of trees
17. Identify forest harvesting patterns
18. Select trees for harvesting
19. Identify and use forestry safety equipment
20. Identify forest harvesting tools
21. Determine volume of a log
22. List steps in processing logs
23. Identify uses of wood products
24. Identify lumber defects
25. Identify methods of drying wood
26. Evaluate and grade finished lumber
27. Identify sources of forestry assistance agency
28. Describe environmental damages caused by fire
29. Identify forest fire management practices
30. Identify use of fire fighting equipment
1. Describe the hydrologic cycle
2. Identify surface and ground water supplies
3. Analyze a watershed reference map
4. Calculate water needs of farm/rural community
5. Interpret water use laws and rights
6. Determine water quality standards
7. Collect a water sample
8. Conduct dissolved oxygen test
9. Test water for hardness
10. Conduct water sodium test
11. Conduct nitrate test
12. Conduct a phosphate test
13. Conduct water pH test
14. Conduct water salinity test
15. Determine water turbidity
16. Make a bacteria plate count
17. Interpret water analysis results
18. Determine point and non-point contamination
19. Identify stages of water filtration
20. Identify stages of water purification
1. Identify careers that require competencies in natural resources
SAE Record Book – Student, Teachers Guide
1. Define and identify goals
2. Plan a calendar of events
3. Complete and record FFA activities
4. Complete and record community activities
5. Complete improvement projects
6. Identify and record non-SAE earnings
7. Record personal expenses
8. Obtain and record SAE project loans
9. Complete a depreciation schedule
10. Complete a financial statement
11. Summarize SAE activities
1. Develop business agreements for production entrepreneurship projects
2. Prepare inventory statements
3. Complete an income journal
4. Complete animal feed records
5. Complete an expense journal
6. Record plant program information
7. Complete livestock breeding records
8. Calculate dairy production data
9. Record project hours of labor
10. Identify and record approved practices
11. Calculate enterprise budget & summary
12. Complete enterprise efficiency record
1. Evaluate and select DLE enterprises
2. Develop DL/S training agreement
3. Record DL/S activities
1. Complete a business plan
2. Project business materials cost
3. Project business labor cost
4. Project business operation cost
5. Project business equipment cost
6. Compute business profit potential
7. Complete a business inventory
8. Record business income
9. Record business expenses
10. Complete a business labor record
11. Calculate business profit/efficiency
1. Develop agribusiness placement training agreement
2. Develop agribusiness placement training plan
3. Record employment related expenses
4. Record employment related income
Student FFA Handbook – FFA Supply Service
1. Become familiar with FFA history
2. Become familiar with FFA Creed
3. Become familiar with FFA Aims and Purposes
4. Become familiar with FFA Constitution and Bylaw
5. Qualify for Greenhand Degree
6. Prepare a business meeting agenda
7. Assist in developing chapter program of work
8. Demonstrate five parliamentary procedure skills
9. Become familiar with officers and duties
10. Identify FFA activities available to members (awards, travel, contests, conventions, etc.)
11. Develop a plan for involvement in FFA
12. Complete proficiency award applications
13. Qualify for Chapter FFA Degree
14. Qualify for State FFA Degree
15. Qualify for American FFA Degree
1. Describe purposes for committees
2. Identify types of committees (ad hoc, standing)
3. Describe the decision making process
4. Demonstrate etiquette and social skills
5. Carry on a conversation with others
6. Demonstrate effective listening and answering skills
7. Identify types of speeches/presentations (impromptu, demonstration, extemporaneous, etc.)
8. Prepare and deliver speech/presentation
9. Lead a group discussion
1. Complete a personality inventory
2. Develop goals for personal improvement
3. Demonstrate confidence
4. Exhibit perseverance
5. Show ability to comprehend instructions
6. Demonstrate initiative
7. Demonstrate reliability
8. Exhibit tact
9. Demonstrate loyalty
10. Demonstrate enthusiasm
11. Demonstrate cooperation
12. Exhibit adaptability
13. Exhibit proper grooming
14. Provide leadership
15. Exhibit poise
16. Exhibit honesty

Major Course Projects

Record Book Simulation

Maintenance of Fresh and Salt Water Aquaria

Land Judging Project

FFA Creed Collage

Course Assessment

This course will follow the district wide grading scale which is mandated by the West Central School Board:

92-100% A

83-91%   B

74-82%  C

65-73%  D

Below 64%  F

The total points for the grading period will be used to determine the letter grade received by the student.  Students will have the opportunity to earn Bonus Points through involvement in FFA activities. Bonus points are added to their daily classroom grade.  Students are required to keep a notebook for each Ag Ed class in which they are enrolled.  The notebooks are collected and graded each nine weeks.