Educational and Presentation Opportunities with Miami SWCD

The Miami Soil and Water Conservation District is committed to providing quality conservation assistance and that includes offering our assistance through educational classroom instruction to Miami County students as well as presentations or programs to all residents of Miami County. Covering all manner of natural resources education, agriculture, soils information, water quality, special events and programs and practices, Information/Education Specialist, Linda Raterman may be asked to present on subjects that can be catered to the individual classroom or presentation audience. These services are also happily provided for homeschooled students, youth groups or organizations, daycare or afterschool programs, etc.

Classroom Education

Miami Soil and Water offers natural resources education classroom instruction presented by Information/Education Specialist, Linda Raterman. Since 2000, she’s been assisting Miami County teachers in their efforts to instruct students in natural resources education. All Miami SWCD Education Programs follow state curriculum standards and can be catered to all students, including homeschooled students, K-12. This office will work with your schedule and program to create a FREE, hands-on, inquiry based program for you and your class.

Linda is certified in: Project Wild, Wild-Science & Civics, Growing Up Wild, Project Learning Tree, Food Land & People, Facing the Future, Aldo Leopold, Project Wet, Wonders of Wetland, and more.

Teaching Aids

  • Stream Table (Demonstrates stream bank erosion – K-12)
  • Sand Tank Water Flow Model (Demonstrates water movement through soil and rock layers – 5-12)
  • EnviroScape Model (Demonstrates non point source pollution, geography, and behavioral sciences – K-1)
  • HACH Test Kits (Phosphate, Ortho – Wide Range Indicator ph – Oxygen, dissolved – DR 100, Colorimeter, Nitrate – 8-12)
  • Macro Invertebrate Identification Kit (4-12)
  • Schematics of Soil Treatment Systems and Functions of Septic Tanks (Teaches how a septic system works and how to maintain it – 8-12)
  • Animal Track Molds (Kit contains front and hind foot replicas of raccoon, deer, mink, fox, and opossum – K-5)
  • Biltmore Stick (Used to determine number of logs in a tree, diameter and board footage – 8-12)
  • Celebrating the Harvest A to Z (Program includes information on updated agricultural technology used to produce food – matched to Ohio Model Competencies for Science, Math, Language Arts and Social Studies. Trunk includes Teacher Notebook and Student Activities Book, special illustrated books for children, posters, scale model farm machinery and special videos – K-3)
  • Groundwater Flow Model (Electric)


  • We Rock
  • Into the River
  • Hibernating Animals
  • A Butterfly is Patient
  • Animals Who Hibernate

Contests & Awards

NACD Poster Contest for Students

The annual NACD and NACD Auxiliary Poster Contest provides students from kindergarten through 12th grade the chance to have their art displayed as part of a national conservation outreach initiative. Each year, the winning posters reflect NACD’s annual Stewardship theme and highlight the work of conservation districts and their state conservation associations, auxiliaries and agencies to protect and enhance natural resources.

The poster contest is open to public, private and home-schooled students. The top three posters in each category of the national contest will receive monetary prizes.

Environmental Education Teacher of the Year Award

To encourage environmental education in Miami County, the Miami Soil and Water Conservation District is sponsoring the Teacher of the Year Award. The winners will be recognized at the District’s Annual Banquet in November. Any teacher who is working in a public, parochial, or private school in Miami County may apply as long as he or she meets the following criteria: 1) educators must be actively teaching full time in the classroom and be personally responsible for developing a conservation education program, 2) teachers who are Soil and Water Conservation District Supervisors are not eligible, but associate supervisors may compete, 3) team entries are eligible, but awards will be made only to the designated team leader.

Workshops and Presentations

Educators Workshop

For many years, the Miami SWCD has partnered with neighboring SWCD offices to create a Multi-County Educators Workshop. Usually taking place in late July or early August, this very popular workshop is designed to be a worthwhile and fun 2-Day hands-on, interactive workshop on topics to be used in the classroom. We work hard to make this 2-day effort affordable and useful, and we make it a point to have GREAT FOOD & A REALLY GOOD TIME! Each year, our goal is to inspire the educator to utilize natural resources education and the technologies that are associated with them in the classroom by using different themed workshops that may use familiar elements from established programs like Project WILD or WET or may be independently created and focus on a popular, yet pertinent subject or emerging technology or innovations. In addition to providing a workshop suited for grades K-12 that is at least 12.5 hours of hands-on curriculum approved learning aligned with Ohio Academic Standards, we have also been working with Ashland University for earned graduate credit, if so desired.

Personalized Workshops

This office can create and facilitate small internal workshops for daycares, youth centers, learning resource centers, FFA students, Career Center students and corporations or businesses. Topics or focus of the workshop can also be catered to the specific interest of the audience.

Presentations to Private or Professional Entities

Miami SWCD has also been asked to present to local clubs and organizations like Rotary or Lions Clubs and other types of agencies on topics ranging from explaining the role of Miami SWCD, particular programs or practices encouraged by this office or special events or projects coordinated by this office.


The Envirothon is a competitive, academic outdoor team event for high school students designed to stimulate and reinforce their interest in the environment and our natural resources while testing their knowledge in five areas:

  • Soils
  • Wildlife
  • Current Environmental Issues
  • Aquatic Ecology
  • Forestry

The Envirothon encourages cooperative decision making, team building and problem solving. Teams consist of three and five members from the same school who have worked together to prepare for the competition.

While each student contributes his or her personal best, the score that counts at the end is the team score.

Please contact our office for more information or if you have a team you would like to enter.


Larry Studebaker Memorial/Miami SWCD Scholarship

Two $1,000 Larry Studebaker Memorial/Miami SWCD Scholarships are offered for the purpose of continuing higher education at a two or four year college or university.

What is Storm Water?

Storm water is water that originates during precipitation events. It may also be used to apply to water that originates with snowmelt that enters the storm water system. Storm water that does not soak into the ground becomes surface runoff, which either flows directly into surface waterways or is channeled into storm sewers, which eventually discharge to surface waters (i.e. rivers).