Deer Creek Conservation District is extremely proud of its annual Outdoor Classroom, which will mark its 34th year in April 2016.
More than 300 fourth grade students from area schools attend each year and visit 11 stations throughout the day-long hands-on event. Students learn about a variety of subjects including grasses, water, trees, soils, wildlife, weather and archaeology.
The Outdoor Classroom began in the early 1980s as a way to show children how we all depend on renewable natural resources for survival, and how their use and ecological care determine their fate.
The first years of the DCCD Outdoor Classroom were held on a district director's farm. In the late 1980s, the district reached an agreement with the 3M Corporation (now Imation). The company dedicated four acres of wooded area on their property to be used for the classroom. For our 30th Outdoor Classroom in 2012, we marked the event by moving to our new location, P-Bar Farms on Rt. 66 between Weatherford and Hydro.
The classroom was among the first in the state and among the first to have a partnership with an industry.
The classroom helps to reinforce essential environmental generalizations such as all living things, including people, are interdependent with one another and with their environment, and natural resources undergo continuous change as nothing in the world remains static.
The Outdoor Classroom also helps to promote DCCD, awareness of the importance of conservation and the district's conservation efforts.