Coached Land Planning and Care
Development of a web-based curriculum that is readily accessible to, and moldable by, cooperative extension staff and other natural resource educators to assist land managers in assessing land conditions and implementing strategic management plans that are based on research-based data. After completing “train-the trainer” sessions in Wyoming, Colorado and Arizona, pilot projects were initiated to test the curriculum working with land managers and communities. Initial results show significant success in actually moving land managers from a learning process to and active phase of plan implementation. Review of the curriculum by educational professionals has recorded high levels of satisfaction after actual use.
1. Develop a curriculum of educational modules and other materials on planning principles, soils, weed management, vegetative inventory, fire management, pest management, timber management, and other land and resource management concepts.
2. Conduct “train-the trainer” sessions for cooperative extension and other natural resource educators in Wyoming, Colorado, and Arizona/New Mexico.
3. Cooperate with educators in three states to conduct “pilot project” educational sessions in the participating states.
4. Conduct on-going evaluations on both educator and land owner levels to assess the effectiveness of the curriculum and delivery approach.
1. The web-based “Land Help” curriculum was initially completed in 2001 and is constantly undergoing updates and review to maintain its vigor. Currently the site has recorded over 32,000 uses in the last eighteen months.
2. Five separate trainings were conducted for Cooperative Extension, NRCS, Conservation District and other educators from environmental and producer organizations. A total of 151 educators were oriented at training sessions and another 27 received individual orientation across the four state area.
3. Thirteen landowners educational sessions were conducted by project cooperators and participants of the trainings resulting in 346 landowners drafting plans and beginning implementation of best-management practices in participating states.
4. Landowner evaluations and educator evaluations were conducted in addition to significant levels of constructive input by agencies and individual educators.
Impacts and Contributions/Outcomes
1. The “Coached Planning/ LandHelp” curriculum has been successfully used to educate landowners in issues of timber management, small acreage management, community resource planning, drought management, range management, and water quality remediation.
2. Other cooperating agencies and groups have found both the curriculum and delivery methods flexible enough to list their materials on the site and refer their staff to its location as a convenience.
3. Word of mouth reports of program satisfaction to other community members have generated secondary demand for repeat programs in Colorado and Wyoming. Land owners have offered to pay higher fee levels to make the program a perennial offering in central and southern Colorado.
4. Suggestions have been made to sponsor a “Human Help” curriculum in a similar manner that could address consumer, family, and nutrition education projects.
5. The website where the curriculum is hosted is currently being reviewed by a multi-disciplinary group of agency representatives and field educators to provide insight to enhance usability.
6. A total of 346 landowners, 32,000 web users and 178 professional educators have learned, utilized and benefited from this project in Colorado, Wyoming, Arizona, and New Mexico with growing numbers each week.
New Mexico State University
NNAPA Bldg. E Hwy 64
Shiprock, NM 87420