Environmental Science Deep Dive: Fire Ecology | F19

Ages: 12-18
Day, Time: Fridays 12:00-1:00
Location: Game Room


Heidi Watters

Heidi Watters is a UW graduate in both Environmental Horticulture & Urban Forestry and Landscape Architecture, including study in Italy, the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew, London and Edinburgh, Scotland. Her multiple design-firm experience includes domestic and international projects. She currently maintains a private practice and serves on her city’s Planning Commission, Board of Architectural Review and as a Forest Steward, in addition to coordinating the Homeschool Stewardship Squad. Heidi is also a homeschooling parent who enjoys sharing her enthusiasm with others and considers the most important curriculum to be her own yard and the great outdoors.

class description

Fire!!! Humans have had a love/hate relationship with it for millennia. Even though it toasts our marshmallows and keeps us from freezing, it is easy to think fire is bad when we see images of a forest burning down- but is it?

The fascinating story of fire ecology has many surprises in store for us. Learn more about the plants and animals that ‘like’ and even need fire. In parts of Washington–and many other places–fire plays an important role in the ecosystem that is both natural and necessary for good health. In class, we’ll discover the secret that fire investigators uncovered looking at an old dead pine. We’ll learn how even a wetland can catch on fire. And discuss what it means when the Seattle sky is full of ash and smoke.

Required Skills for Students to Be Successful in This Class:

Compliance with Family Rights & Responsibilities.  Ability to listen quietly and respectfully while others are speaking.


Weekly homework completion (apx. 20-60 min) encouraged but not required. Homework may include: writing assignments of varying lengths, reflection assignments, readings to discuss in next class and viewing recommended video links. One assignment (apx. 30-90 min) will be required at the end of the session, students will share it with the class and can choose whether to write, draw or speak it.

field trips:


additional fees/supplies:


parent involvement:

This class is intended for students only.

Age Variances:

Students outside of the age range listed on this class description will not be granted age variance admission.