2006 Idaho Earth Science Teachers Field Workshop

Geology and Geologic Hazards at Clark Fork-Pend Oreille Lake

July 8-13, 2006

Lake Pend Oreille

             Lake Pend Oreille near Hope, site of the 2006 Workshop                              Belt Nerds in Training

                Lightning Creek Floodplain


The Idaho Geological Survey (IGS) holds a field workshop for Idaho earth science teachers every summer. Major funding for the workshop is provided by the Idaho Bureau of Homeland Security. The IGS donates staff salaries equal in value to this funding. Academic credit is available through the University of Idaho. In 2006, the workshop was held at Sam Owen Campground, on the shores of Lake Pend Oreille near Hope, Idaho. This website provides a record of workshop activities. Feel free to use any images and text on this website, but please acknowledge the IGS and the author or photographer.

The workshop is designed for in-service Idaho teachers. While many workshop participants teach middle school earth science, the workshop is open to all educators of any grade level or subject. Expertise or prior training in the earth sciences is not required. Participation by non-teachers or out-of-state educators is provided on a space-available basis.

Go to Downloadable Teaching Activities

For Further Information Contact:                                                                             

Bill Phillips
Idaho Geological Survey
University of Idaho
PO Box 443014
Moscow, ID 83844-3014


Support for the 2006 Workshop was provided by:
Idaho Geological Survey
Idaho Bureau of Homeland Security
Federal Emergency Management Agency
National Energy Foundation
Idaho Mining Association
Idaho Earth Science Teachers Association

Thanks to Jim Cash and Jean Robinson for providing many of the photos used in this web site.
Special thanks to Stephen Weiser (Idaho Bureau of Homeland Security, retired) for his enthusiatic past support of the workshop, and to Mark McFaddan (North Idaho College) for exceptional teaching.

Workshop Objectives

The workshop seeks to reduce losses from natural hazards by training K12 teachers in hazard recognition and mitigation. Teachers are provided information and support to help them develop natural hazard educational activities for their local classrooms. The workshop also promotes high quality teaching of the earth sciences in Idaho schools by providing instruction on important geological concepts and Idaho's unique geologic history. In 2006, the workshop focused on the following subjects:

    •    natural hazard recognition and mitigation, particularly those caused by earthquakes, mass wasting and flooding
    •    review of mineralogy and petrology
    •    geology and geomorphology of the ice dam area of Glacial Lake Missoula
    •    sedimentation and stratigraphy of the Precambrian Belt Supergroup
    •    techniques of teaching natural hazards and earth science

Teaching Staff

The workshop is taught by geologists from the Idaho Geological Survey (IGS) and a hazard mitigation expert from the Idaho Bureau of Homeland Security (BHS). In 2006, these included Bill Phillips and Roy Breckenridge (IGS), and Stephen Weiser (BHS, retired). We were fortunate to obtain further teaching and geological expertise from Mark McFaddan (North Idaho College) and Jim Cash (Moscow School District).

Staff Biographies

Academic Credit

 Participants may take the workshop for two academic credits through the University of Idaho. University credit is assigned by the workshop coordinator, Bill Phillips, on a Pass/Fail basis. Due to the workshop format, incompletes cannot be given except in case of illness or family emergency. In 2006, the requirements for receiving academic credit for the workshop from the University of Idaho were:
1.    Attend all field trips, lectures, short course, and other instructional activities noted in the Schedule of Events.
2.    Develop a workshop project. This project may consist of a lesson plan, a research project, or other educational activity. Consult with Bill Phillips regarding suitable projects. Participants may work in groups, but the group size may not exceed three.
3.    Present an oral project summary or demonstration in the Friday morning seminar. Group presentations are fine. A one page outline of the project is also required. The outline may be hand-written. A laptop computer, printer, overhead projector, projection screen and data projector will be available for participants.

2006 Schedule of Events

Photos of Activities

Examining Sedimentary Structures in the Precambrian Belt Supergroup

Belt Supergroup and TeachersMcFaddan discussing pinch and swell structures

Making Rubbings of Glacial Striations

Rubbing rockStriation rubbingCrayon rubbings of glacial striationsIt is a stretch to get rubbings done

Rock and Mineral Identification Short Course

Rock ID CourseWhat mineral is this?Mineral ID course

Discussion of Flooding at Clark Fork

NOTE: Lightning Creek was flooded in early November, 2006. Here are links to newpaper accounts of the flooding. Thanks to Jean Robinson for bringing this to my attention.






Examination of Glacial Deposits

Group of teachers in sand pitRoy in the sand pitMcFaddan examines lake depositsDigging glacial lake deposits

Presentations by Workshop Participants

Workshop presentationTeacher talkingThe pavilion at Sam Owen CampgroundAnother teacher talksTalk and stand tall

List of Participants

Staff Presentations

Introduction to Workshop (8 mb PDF File; Bill Phillips with thanks to R. Lewis, R. Breckenridge, S. Weiser, M. McFaddan, R. Burmester, Ice Age Institute, USGS)
The Belt Supergroup in the Sandpoint Area (29 mb PDF File; Mark McFadden)

Workshop Projects

Workshop participants were asked to devise and present a lesson plan or activity using material presented during the workshop. Here are outlines of the activities (PDF files files unless otherwise noted). Please acknowledge the author if you download and use any of these materials.

Using Venn Diagrams to Sort Rocks by Color (Cathy Bayes)

Kootenai River Valley Watershed Studies: A Year-Long Interdisciplinary Theme (Doreen Beck Overheads Outline)

Poetry and Earth Science, and Idaho History/Geology (Jennifer Emory)

Mineral Treasure Hunt (Steve Ordonez)

Rock Cycle (Barbara McCabe)

Comparison of Bonneville and Missoula Floods (Jim Wilcox)

Making a Winogradosky Column (Jean Robinson)

Rock Identification Activity (Suzanne Bannan)

Geology Field Trip Project (Tim Gering)

Geology "Jeopardy" Game (Scott Little,Word Excel)

Dam Debate (Gary Smith, Word)

Igneous Stick (Word) and Handout (Word) (Perky Smith-Hagadone)

Field Trip Guide (5.8 Mb PDF file)

Course Evaluations

At the end of the workshop, participants were asked to provide a confidential evaluation of the workshop experience. Details of this evaluation are given in the links below.

Evaluation Form

Statistical Summary
Staff Discussion of Evaluation Results