Hundreds of fifth graders learn about natural resources for annual Environmental Awareness Days

Almost 500 fifth graders from 18 different schools near Lewiston spent two days at Hells Gate State Park this week, learning about Idaho’s natural resources.

Professionals from the Idaho Department of Lands, as well as other representatives from wildlife, air, water, and soil conservation agencies helped to teach students during the annual Environmental Awareness Days hosted by Nez Perce Soil and Water Conservation District.

The various agencies set up stations along the river for students to learn about forestry, fire, fisheries, entomology, air quality, soils, wildlife, agriculture, and biocontrol.

Instructors from the Idaho Department of Lands explained to students how the State of Idaho manages its forests to conserve soil, air, and water for the future through timber harvesting followed by tree replanting.

They also explained the agency’s role in fighting wildfire. Students got the chance to try on full fire gear and use radios to role play “calling dispatch.”