Youth Publications and Videos

Publications available from:             Natural Resources - Cornell University Cooperative Extension   
Independent Publisher

4-H Natural Resources Annotated Project Sequences with Activities Summary*,
uses many of the following publicaitons. Online publications listed.

Available from IRIS, Cornell University, 302 Rice Hall, (607) 255-6520.
Explorations from an Aerial Perspective. Retail cost: $47.20. Extension cost: $39.85.The two manuals are shrink wrapped for ease of shipping. For more information view the promotional flyer.
The EAP package consists of two manuals: (1)Program Manual - some 200 pages of text, designed to be used by educators. Contains background on the program, 9 chapters of subject matter content, exercises, case studies and a resource packet (set of stereo aerial photographs, portion of topographic map that accompanies the photos, the USGS topographic map symbol sheet and a land use/land cover classification system.) (2)Student Workbook - some 30 pages, designed for use with students. Contains all exercises found in the Program Manual, ready for copying and ten resource packets. For more information or to order, see

Available through Cornell Educational Resources Program:
Experience 4-H Natural Resources.
6 Leader's/teacher's guides and accompanying training videos. $185.00

Topics include:    
  Birds in Your Backyard Field Guides Made Easy
  Insects All around Us Trees: Dead or Alive
  Water Worlds Wildlife Discover

Designed to introduce youth to our natural resource by involving them in fun, educational activities. This series acts as a video companion for the project's Activity Guides and is intended to help volunteer leaders and teachers work with young people creatively and successfully. Under your guidance and direction, children who participate in theses projects will gain a deeper appreciation of life, and the world around us. To order contact: Cornell Educational Resources Program (607) 255-1837 or write: NY Ag in the Classroom, 408 Kennedy Hall, Ithaca, NY 14853.

The following publications are available from: Cornell DNR Store
Cornell Cooperative Extension Publications, 108 Fernow Hall, Ithaca, NY 14853
Voice: (607) 254-6556 Fax: (607) 255-2815 E-Mail:

Fisheries and Aquatic Resources        Forestry        Water Quality        Solid Waste        Wildlife

Fisheries and Aquatic Resources

Exploring Freshwater Fisheries. 147L57,24 pages. Leader's guide for use with youth ages 12 and up. Activities include fish identification, assembling photographic collections, creating Japanese fish prints and plaster fish casts, understanding fish ecology, and observation techniques.

Guide to Freshwater Fishes of New York. 147S108, 140 pages. This pocket-size field guide will help you identify more than 100 fish found in northeastern waterways. Gives identifying features such as colors, patterns, markings, and location of fins. Life cycles and preferred foods and habitat are described. Can help avoid misidentification resulting in a violation of regulations. Comes in a waterproof bag; fits into your tackle box. Reprinted 1996.

Let's Go Fishing. 147L56, 33 pages. Leader's guide for use with urban and rural youth of all ages. Project introduces elementary fishing skills using spin-cast tackle, applicable to fresh- and saltwater fishing. Features information on filleting fish, knot tying, fish characteristics, bait, and fishing equipment.

Let's Go Ice Fishing. 147L515, 20 pages. Leader's guide for use with youth ages 12 and up, or highly supervised beginners. Focuses on skills involved in ice fishing, with sections on safety.

Pond and Stream Safari. 147L24, 57 pages. Leader's guide for youth ages 10 and up. Features natural history and ecology of freshwater invertebrates. Youth activities include sampling for and collecting aquatic invertebrates, learning about invertebrate adaptations, food webs, and water quality.


Forest Trees of the Northeast. 147IB235. 277 pages. 1997. Detailed descriptions of 27 trees commonly found in the Northeast include the following information: distribution and habitat, including climate and soils; the tree's development over a season and a lifetime; the diseases, insects, and injuries that typically attach the tree; the products and uses of the tree's wood; and the history and folklore about the species.

Know Your Trees. 147J85 70 pages. Reprinted 1996. A longtime favorite field guide. Identifies 50 northeastern trees by common and scientific names. Summer and winter keys are included. Compact size.

Trees: Dead or Alive. 147L22, pages. 1992. Takes a new look at the growing tree, tree rings, roots, live tree homes, and snags (dead trees). Activities reinforce the value of trees. Includes activity record sheets, a glossary, suggested questions for thought, and field trip ideas. Leader's guide for youth ages 9-12. Training video available, see below.

Water Quality

Watershed Science for Educators 147LM25, 213 pages. Everyone needs water to survive, and everyone, everywhere, lives in a watershed. Written for high school and middle school teachers and students, this packet will help them easily incorporate the study of watersheds into science classes and into after-school science clubs. Some of the activities include calculating discharge, sampling aquatic invertebrate life, calculating a biotic index for stream organisms, using dissolved oxygen nomograph, and physical monitoring, such as measuring stream depth and velocity. Reproducible data sheets, background information for educators, worksheets, and more are included.

Water Wise: Lessons in Water Resources. 147WW, 87 pages. Teacher's/leader's manual for grades 5 through 9. Includes information and activities focusing on properties of water, the water cycle, groundwater and surface water, water quality, air pollution, wastewater treatment, and water purification.

Water Worlds. 147L518 (packet with 3-pg. leader guide) 147M518 (12-pg. member guide), for youth ages 9-12. Activities involve building equipment to sample the physical and biological aspects of water. Also contains supplement on aquarium building. Training video available, see below.

Solid Waste

Composting: Wastes to Resources. 147CWRF, packet contains 37-page leader's guide for use with youth ages 10 and up. Youth learn about composting kitchen and yard wastes, and see how they can help to reduce the waste stream. Instructions included for making compost bins, and for activities using compost to teach science concepts. Also contains two posters.

Recycling: Mining Resources From Trash. 174RMT, packet contains 30-page leader's guide for use with youth ages 10 and up. Activities show different ways people can recycle. Four large posters feature items made from recycled materials.


Bluebirds in New York. 27 pages. Member's guide for youth ages 9-13. Includes instructions for building and mounting bluebird nest boxes, and information on bluebird ecology and monitoring bluebird behavior.

Lasting Impressions: A Guide to Understanding Fossils in the Northeastern United States. 147LM26, 115 pages. Fossils can help us understand the long-distant past of our planet. Designed for educators and parents of middle and high school youth, this packet includes 16 activities, which range form hands-on simulations of making fossils to figuring out, form a fossil footprint, whether the dinosaur that made it was walking or running. Because similar fossils are found in various parts of the United States and Canada, The activities and explanations will be useful across North America. Published in collaboration with the Paleontological Research Institution in Ithaca, NY.

Understanding Predation and Northeastern Birds of Prey. 147IB175, 48 pages. For advanced youth to adult audiences. In-depth exploration of predation, and life histories and ecology of northeastern birds of prey. With color illustrations. Can be used with Understanding Predation and Northeastern Birds of Prey or Understanding Predation slide sets.

Wildlife Discovery. 147-L519, 20 pages plus materials. Introduces children to the needs of wildlife. Both the adult and youth guide tell how to introduce children to the needs of wildlife and helps them search for wildlife and their signs. Sections include Animal Tracks, Attract a Track, Owl Pellets, and Who Lives Here? Materials come in a reusable pocket folder. 1989. Members guide only for Wildlife Discovery. 147-M519, 20 pages.

Wildlife Habitat Enhancement. 147L516, 23 pages. Suggested activities for youth group leaders that teach environmental awareness and wildlife values using projects to improve food, cover, and water resources. 1984.

Wildlife in Today's Landscapes. 147-L520, 63 page leader guide plus materials. Fro adults to use with youth aged 12 and older. More than 100 illustrations and text explain new concepts in wildlife ecology. Tells what you can do to help wildlife - including rare and endangered species - in a backyard or on a city balcony. Includes activities. The reusable folder contains everything you'll need to choose a habitat patch, map it, make improvements, and maintain it. Contents: a teacher/leader guide; 12 activity records; a project record; activity cards; a list of endangered and threatened species; and a list of trees and shrubs and the wildlife they attract. 1991.

Wildlife Notebook. 147-IB210, 67 pages. Sketches and descriptions of favorite birds and mammals bring alive your field trip. Comments and vital statistics on each - including preferred habitat and food, size, colors, and breeding cycles - make this informative rainy-day reading, too.


Restoring the Balance: Biological Control of Purple Loosestrife. 147-VBCPL, 28 minutes. This video shows how to conserve and enhance natural wetlands and presents information about biological controls. It reviews the history of the invasion and spread of purple loosestrife, describes management alternatives, and discusses techniques for mass rearing of biocontrol insects. 1996.

Available from an independent publisher:
Composting in the Classroom: Scientific Inquiry for High School Students. This book is a comprehensive guide for teachers interested in guiding composting research projects by high school students. It includes an overview of the biology, chemistry, and physics of composting, instructions for building compost systems, including both indoor "bioreactors" and outdoor bins, methods for both worm composting and thermophilic or "hot" composting, equations for calculating the best mix of compost ingredients, scientific techniques for monitoring the composting process and for testing the properties of finished compost, guidelines for studying the effects of compost on plant growth, and advice about helping students to design meaningful research projects. ISBN 0-7872-4433-3. Available from: Kendall/Hunt Publishing Company, 1-800-228-0810.

The Cornell Scientific Inquiry Series is a set of four comprehensive guides to student research on topics in the fields of environmental toxicology, ecology of invasive species, biodegradation, and watershed science. These books were produced by Cornell’s Environmental Inquiry program, in which science teachers worked with Cornell scientists to translate university-level research protocols into techniques that can safely and feasibly be used at the high school level. The series provides core science information and guides high school or middle school students in designing and conducting experiments, presenting their results, and exchanging feedback with their peers. For ordering information, contact: National Science Teachers Association (NTSA): 1840 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington VA 22201-3000 USA, Phone: 703.243.7100 Web: The series includes four books:

Assessing Toxic Risk provides protocols for evaluating the toxicity of chemical solutions or environmental samples by conducting bioassays using organisms such as lettuce seeds, duckweed, and Daphnia. The cross-disciplinary approach enables students to see connections between biology, chemistry, environmental science, and human health, and to discover the interplay between scientific data and human judgment in making real-world decisions affecting public health and safety. Student Edition, Product Number: PB162X1S, Member: $4.76, Non-Member: $5.95; Teacher Edition, Product Number: PB162X1T, Member: $7.96, Non-Member: $9.95

Invasion Ecology uses real life examples of the introduction, spread, control, and impacts of invasive species to teach important ecological concepts related to population, community, and ecosystem ecology. Students also learn about how to participate in research projects focusing on biological control of purple loosestrife and phragmites. Student Edition, Product Number: PB162X4S, Member: $4.76, Non-Member: $5.95; Teacher Edition, Product Number: PB162X4T, Member: $7.96, Non-Member: $9.95

Decay and Renewal provides techniques for students to learn the basics while investigating the science behind biodegradation – in nature, and in human-engineered systems for wastewater treatment, waste disposal, and bioremediation of oil spills and other contaminated sites. Student Edition: Product Number: PB162X3S, Member: $4.76 Non-Member: $5.95; Teacher Edition: Product Number: PB162X3T, Member: $7.96 Non-Member: $9.95, combination and bulk pricing available.

Watershed Dynamics (available Spring 2004) provides instructions for student investigations of chemical, physical, and biological analyses of water quality, along with analysis of land uses and management practices based on field work and remote sensing. Using simple computer models, students learn to integrate these various types of data to reach conclusions about their study watershed.

Hands-On Herpetology: Exploring Ecology and Conservation. Member Price: $19.96 Non-Member Price: $24.95 Plentiful, diverse, and available, "herps" are sure-fire attention-grabbers. They’re also perfect for teaching students about biology, ecology, and conservation, including what young people can do to help solve environmental problems affecting both amphibians and reptiles. This highly readable resource melds rigorous science content with science research. Its five sections cover the animals’ biology and handling (including safety tips), provides background information for teachers, offers 29 indoor/outdoor activities, and broaches critical conservation issues. Ideal for middle and high school teachers, volunteer leaders in 4-H and other clubs, and nature center staff who want to mix serious issues with amazing science. For ordering information, contact: National Science Teachers Association (NTSA): 1840 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington VA 22201-3000 USA, Phone: 703.243.7100 Web:

*Online publications mentioned in the 4-H activities summary.


      Field Guides Made Easy


      Field Guides Made Easy

      Birds in Your Backyard
           Leader’s Guide


      Wildlife Habitat Enhancement

Solid Waste

      What about Waste?

      Composting: Wastes to Resources

      Composting in the Classroom

Fish and Aquatic Resources

      Basic Fly Tying


      It’s Gotten Rotten
            Leader’s Guide


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