BISMARCK, N.D. (KXNET) — This week’s news from the North Dakota Game and Fish Department pertains not only to the winners of the Earth Day Patch Contest and how to receive a patch, but also their latest efforts to educate professionals in the state.

On April 10, the Department announced the winners of this year’s Earth Day Patch contest. Over 2,000 students from 116 different schools entered the competition this year to design a special reward patch given to those who aid the organization in cleaning up public lands. Projects that qualify their volunteers to receive the patch include waste pick-up and landscaping on public property. The winners in the three categories, as well as the overall winner whos design is featured on the 2023 Earth Day Patch, are as follows:

  • Kindergarten-4th Grade Category: Ella Fernandez, Fessenden Bowdon Elementary
  • 5th-8th Grade Category: Brooke Livingston, Kenmare Public School
  • 9th-12th Grade Category: Alex Dodgen, Minot High School Central Campus
  • Overall Winner: Brooke Livingston, Kenmare Public School

Those who have participated in cleanup efforts or projects are asked to call Sherry Niesar at 701-527-3712 or email to receive a patch.

In addition to the patch contest, the Department is also sponsoring a series of professional development workshops for educators this summer across North Dakota. Here’s a quick overview of each of the workshops available.

  • Using Visual Arts to Teach Life Science is a fast-paced series of workshops showcasing activities with clay, water, pastels, and colored pencils that educators can use in their classrooms — as well as discuss the proper ways of teaching and integrating these lessons with an emphasis on North Dakota’s environment, wildlife, and resources. This workshop will be held on June 6-7 at North Dakota State University’s Fargo location.
  • Habitats of North Dakota: A New Generation of Lessons utilizes the North Dakota Habitats curriculum and the new Habitats Lesson Plans. The course is fast-paced, and includes hands-on activities and walking trips to help introduce the new program and how to implement it in elementary and secondary classrooms.

University graduate credit is available for both workshops. For any more information on the courses, contact Sherry Niesar.