Erie County Conservation District

Middle School Envirothon


Hands-On Learning

The Middle School Envirothon was begun in 2011 due to interest from younger grades.  After watching older siblings and friends participate in the high school competition, middle school students were ready and excited to participate in their own event.  This event was created to encourage students to explore different aspects of the environment, specifically:

  • Forestry
  • Aquatics
  • Wildlife
  • Soils/Land Use
  • Current Events

Not only are students encouraged to learn and discover knowledge based on these five focuses, but they are also introduced to and work with several experts and professionals in the environmental field, demonstrating to students career options open to them and their interests.  As with the high school competition, students work as a team to complete written challenges.  However, the quizzes are shortened to make time for hands-on activities at each testing/learning station.  Student teams also take time prior to the event to prepare a short team oral presentation on a given topic.

Soils/Land Use Station

Who can participate?

Erie County students in grades 5-8 are able to create school teams for the event. Each team must have 3-5 students, with a maximum of 5 teams per school. Homeschoolers and cyber school students are also welcome to form teams.

What is the event like?

The day begins with teams registering at the Resource Center at Headwaters Park. Each team will receive a clipboard and pencils to use throughout the morning. After an introduction to the event, student groups are sent with Conservation District staff into the Park to begin their morning! There are 5 rotations during the morning, with groups being led by ECCD staff. We provide a snack to the groups mid- morning, and after the fifth rotation groups head back to the Resource Center for lunch, followed by awards and pictures!

Thinking Hard

What are the awards?

Second and third place teams earn a framed certificate for display at their school and an Envirothon t-shirt. First place winners receive a framed certificate, individual medals, t-shirts, and an exclusive memento to celebrate their hard work!

How do teams prepare?

Preparations depends upon schedules of students and schools. After the advisor forms teams, students may choose to study individually, as a group during common hours at school, or after school hours at various locations. Advisors are a great resource for organizing and guiding preparation for the event.

For more information about creating a team at your school, please contact Kristen Currier at or 814-825-6403.

Erie County Resources:

Middle School Envirothon 2018 – Thursday, May 10th

Cool weather did not bother the participants at the 2018 Middle School Envirothon held at Headwaters Park. Fourteen local middle school teams of 3-5 students competed in Forestry, Aquatics, Wildlife, Soils/Land Use, and the Current Issue: Harmful Algal Blooms. They also worked with local agencies further exploring these topics in small groups out in the Park, utilizing our local natural resources.

North East Middle School, Team Sassafras, earned first place, securing a sought-after excursion to the Penn Dixie Fossil Park. Donated by the Conservation District, the excursion will take the winning team to the Fossil Park in neighboring New York to experience digging for and discovering various fossils. Second place and third place were both taken by St. Gregory School. Congratulations!

First Place 2018 – North East Middle School

Second Place 2018 – St. Gregory School

Third Place 2018 – St. Gregory School

Sponsors for the 2018 Erie County Envirothon include

S.O.N.S. of Lake Erie * Wegmans * Shearer's Snacks * Erie Insurance * Erie County Conservation District

Our sponsors are imperative to the success of this program. Their gracious donations assist with programming, hosting the event, and providing for the scholarships and prizes awarded to winning teams. To become a sponsor for future Envirothons, download the Envirothon Sponsorship Form:

  • Middle School Envirothon Sponsorship Form (416.24 KB)