Partners in Fieldwork

Partners in Fieldwork camera trap setup for Lincoln Park Zoo

Urban Wildlife Field Research at Local High Schools

Launched in the fall of 2013, this year-long program engages high school youth in research activities that support the work of the zoo’s Urban Wildlife Institute. Students work with their teachers to collect data on local wildlife at their school site using non-invasive techniques such as camera traps (pictured above with participating high school teachers), bird surveys and bat monitors. Teachers and students will receive all the training they need in order to participate successfully.

Related Focuses
Engage Community Members in the Work of Zoo Researchers


The Partners in Fieldwork program is accepting applications for the 2014-2015 school year.

We’re Looking for Partners for the 2014–2015 School Year!

Applications for the 2014-2015 school year are being accepted now! To apply, download and complete the application below. Submit the application and statement of interest by postal mail, email or fax to:

Education Coordinator
Hurvis Center for Learning Innovation and Collaboration
Lincoln Park Zoo
2001 North Clark Street
Chicago, IL 60614

Fax: 312-742-2040
Email: hurviscenter@lpzoo.org

The deadline for applications is May 30, 2014. Applications must be postmarked by this date. Applications are considered incomplete until both the application and statement of interest have been received. Late or incomplete applications will not be considered.

If you have any questions or need further assistance, please contact the education coordinator by phone at 312-742-2070 or email at hurviscenter@lpzoo.org

  Download the Partners in Fieldwork Application

Partners in Fieldwork Family Day attendees can see research results and explore the zoo.

Partners in Fieldwork Family Day

To celebrate our inaugural class of student researchers, we’re inviting families of students who participated in the Partners in Fieldwork program to a family day at the zoo on May 10! Guests can visit stations throughout the zoo to learn about continuing research on Chicago-area wildlife. Researchers will share preliminary results using data collected by students throughout the school year. Afterward, we’ll provide lunch and time to mingle with other families and zoo staff. Then you can enjoy the rest of the day by exploring Lincoln Park Zoo!

Schedule

9:15 a.m.
Buses leave schools for zoo

10 a.m.–Noon
Explore different stations around the zoo

Noon
Lunch (provided by Hurvis Center)
Choose from sandwiches and various sides.

12:30–2 p.m.
Free time to explore Lincoln Park Zoo

2 p.m.
Buses leave zoo for schools

Saturday, May 10
Meet at Foreman Pavilion
For Families (All Ages Welcome)
FREE (Registration Required)
Register Today!

Reservations are limited. Spaces must be reserved by 5 p.m. on Thursday, May 8. Tickets will not be mailed to you. Simply provide your name at check-in at Foreman Pavilion.

Paid parking is available in our parking lot at Cannon Drive and Fullerton Parkway.


Partners in Fieldwork Program Goals

  • Engage Chicago youth as participants in the authentic research of Lincoln Park Zoo scientists.
  • Increase understanding about methods used for studying wildlife.
  • Raise awareness about the diversity of Chicago wildlife.
  • Provide educators with authentic experiences to augment the classroom life-science curriculum with research activities.
  • Encourage youth to explore nature outside of school hours.
  • Collect useful data for the Urban Wildlife Institute.

Partners in Fieldwork Program Components

The Partners in Fieldwork program focuses on training youth and teachers to collect data and share their research with the zoo’s Urban Wildlife Institute as well as their school community. The program consists of five key components:

Component 1: Professional Development Workshops
Conducted at Lincoln Park Zoo, these workshops prepare participating teachers to assist students in data collection, learn more about the animals and research at the zoo and collaborate with fellow participants.

Component 2: School Site Visits
Four times throughout the year a zoo educator visits participating schools to help students develop authentic research skills that allow students to collect data that will be used by Urban Wildlife Institute scientists.

Component 3: Field Trips 
Participating students will take two field trips, one to visit the zoo to conduct research near Nature Boardwalk at Lincoln Park Zoo and the other to conduct research in a local natural area.

Component 4: Ongoing Research
Students will conduct ongoing research on school grounds and in the surrounding neighborhood, employing techniques used to study local wildlife.

Component 5: Zoo Family Day 
The culminating event, Zoo Family Day, is held at Lincoln Park Zoo and is an opportunity for students to demonstrate to their families what they learned throughout the year, to meet zoo researchers and hear how they are using the data collected by the schools.


Staff

 

Leah Melber, Ph.D.
Senior Director, Hurvis Center for Learning Innovation and Collaboration

   

Kyle Soller, M.A.T.
Education Manager, Hurvis Center for Learning Innovation and Collaboration

 

Emma Martell
Education Coordinator, Hurvis Center for Learning Innovation and Collaboration

  Matthew Mulligan, Hurvis Center for Learning Innovation and Collaboration  

Matthew Mulligan, M.S.
Youth Research Facilitator,  Hurvis Center for Learning Innovation and Collaboration

Ellen Bechtol is Education Research Manager in the Hurvis Center for Learning Innovation and Collaboration  

Ellen Bechtol, M.A.
Education Research Manager, Hurvis Center for Learning Innovation and Collaboration

   

 


Multimedia

Teacher workshop on camera traps at Lincoln Park Zoo  

Schoolyard Species
Learn how the zoo’s Hurvis Center for Learning Innovation and Collaboration links Chicago high school students with research led by the zoo’s Urban Wildlife Institute.