This past summer, the Finger Lakes Institute Education Outreach program worked with the New York State Parks system to offer teachers an opportunity to explore the wonderful geology of the state parks in the region and design lessons plans around them.
Teachers from several school districts were able to take part in the program. Funding from the Dorr Foundation and State Senator Michael Nozzolio, provided stipends for the teachers to participate; each also developed a lesson plan that involved bringing his or her classes to a state park. Additionally, each school district is receiving a $500 grant for field trip expenses as part of the program.
As a result, teacher Randy French and students from the Geneseo Middle School visited Dishmill Creek in Letchworth State Park to identify and interpret the various natural phenomena.
“The Finger Lakes Institute program I participated in made it possible for about 60 students to explore a little used area of Letchworth State Park,” explains French. “Without the funding, these students would not have been able to experience firsthand the fascinating geology that is in our backyards. The people at the Finger Lakes Institute were wonderfully helpful to organize such a program.”
Pictured at Treman State Park are the teachers and program staff: Top left to right: Robert Kissel, director of education, Museum of the Earth,; Sheila Myers, Finger Lakes Institute education coordinator; Heather Kent, York School District; Kate Soriano, Dryden High; Peter McWain, Dryden; Laurie Van Vleet, DeWitt Middle School; Travis Crocker, Dryden; Fred Leff, Seneca Falls High; Paul Weich, Groton High; Bill Begeal, Trumansburg High; John Behm, Skaneateles High; Bottom: Roberta Palmiotto, Union Springs High; Randy French, Geneseo Middle School; Brian McDowell, Hilton High; Leigh Davis Wayne-Finger Lakes BOCES, and Christine Smith, Finger Lakes State Park Educator.