The five members of the High Rock Booger Lizards of Davidson County Homeschool are serious about conserving the environment, even if their names don’t reflect it.
The team, which also represented the state of North Carolina, placed second in the National Conservation Foundation’s 2021 Envirothon competition on July 28. Nebraska was the host state this year, but due to COVID-19 restrictions, the event took place online.
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The Davidson County team included home schooled students Sydney Loflin, Josie Freeman, Nathan Gobble, Alex Pope and Ellie Jones.
“Words cannot express how proud I am of the team,” said Lisa Loflin, team advisor. “Adequate preparation for competition forces students to make many sacrifices during their summer. Most of the top three teams are made up of recently graduated students. Our team was made up of three rising seniors and two rising juniors… And with a virtual competition with four out of five students who have never competed at the NCF level before; it is truly an achievement.
A total of 42 teams competed in NCF-Envirothon and included four teams from Canada and three from China. The New York team took first place and the South Carolina team placed third.
The competition combines knowledge in ecology and natural resource management, and emphasizes teamwork and high-level thinking skills, such as analysis and interpretation. The goal of the Envirothon is to develop environmentally conscious citizens capable of assuming future leadership roles.
Participating teams were tested on various environmental and ecosystem issues and demonstrated their knowledge of environmental science and natural resource management in five natural resource areas including soil / land use, aquatic ecology , forestry, wildlife and current environmental issues.
Each team also developed an oral presentation, an essential element of the competition, addressing a practical scenario of natural resources.
A statement from the National Conservation Foundation Envirothon Competition website said that the ability to communicate orally about natural resources is “essential for solving environmental problems and issues, especially in situations and scenarios where collaborative efforts are required. to develop practical solutions ”.
As the second place winners of the national competition, the High Rock Booger Lizards received a team scholarship of $ 10,000.
And what about that name? Loflin said the team chose the nickname after the Snot Otter, which is one of three giant salamander species in the world. She said they also thought it was “a bit of necessary fun” after the recent pandemic.
The Davidson County team won first place in the high school division at the North Carolina Envirothon in April. There were 78 middle and high school teams that competed in the first ever virtual NC Envirothon, with the winners advancing to the national competition in Nebraska.
The Envirothon for Middle School and High School Students is sponsored by the NC Association of Soil and Water Conservation Districts with assistance from the NC Division of Soil and Water Conservation.
General information reporter Sharon Myers can be reached at [email protected] Follow her on Twitter @LexDispatchSM.