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Comparison of Two Methods Used to Teach Sixth Grade Students Recognition of Structural Defects in Trees

HIDE
 Title Page
 Dedication
 Acknowledgement
 Table of Contents
 List of Figures
 List of Tables
 Abstract
 Introduction
 Literature review
 Materials and methods
 Results
 Discussion
 Appendix A: Pre-test
 Appendix B: Post-test
 Appendix C: Example contingency...
 References
 Biographical sketch
 

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1 COMPARISON OF TWO METHODS UTILIZED TO TEACH SIXTH GRADE STUDENTS RECOGNITION OF STRUCTURAL DEFECTS IN TREES By LAURA ANNE SANAGORSKI A THESIS PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLOR IDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF SCIENCE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2006

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2 Copyright 2006 by Laura A. Sanagorski

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3 I dedicate this work to my moth er, Linda Sanagorski, (19472006).

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4 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS I would like to thank the members of my committee for their boundless support and suggestions. First and foremost, a special thank you should be extended to George Fitzpatrick. This work would not be possible without his un limited support and guidan ce. I would like to thank him for keeping me on track and for review ing all steps of my wo rk with his skilled proficiency. I also thank Kimberly Moore, William H. Kern, and Eva Worden, for giving me the opportunity to carry out this study, and for their commitment and support as members of my graduate committee. George Fitzpatrick, Kimberly Moore, and Eva Worden should also be recognized as previous professors who have contributed to cultivating my passion for arboriculture, horticulture, and education. I would like to thank Wendy Meyer, for her guidance and support through both the undergraduate and graduate stages of my academic career. I would like to thank the prin cipals and teachers who allowed me to conduct my research in their schools. This work would not have been possible without their cooperation. Thank you to Nikki Simaglou, Thomas Zielinski, Dr. Kr is J. Black, David Olafson, Elsa Labonski, Aaronette Gresham. I would like to thank the Univ ersity of Florida Institutional Review Board for reviewing and approving my re search protocol. I would like to thank Tim Womack for his insp iration and dedication to educating todays children about trees, while our paths crosse d briefly, as we sought similar goals. Finally, I would like to thank those who ha ve supported and believed in me through my non-traditional educa tional experience. Thanks to Bec ky, Emily, and Dad for their love and

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5 support across many miles. Thank you to Lisa, a nd Jimbo for their encour agement from afar. Thank you to Keith and Diana for sharing expe rience and knowledge with me, and for their encouragement through this process. I would like to extend sp ecial gratitude to Scott, for bei ng my best friend, for the constant support through this whole experien ce, and for believing in me. I cannot imagine this past year without you. Thank you for all of the ways you ma ke things possible. I love you very much!

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6 TABLE OF CONTENTS ACKNOWLEDGMENTS...............................................................................................................4 TABLE OF FIGURES............................................................................................................... ......8 LIST OF TABLES................................................................................................................. ..........9 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION..................................................................................................................12 Trees, Children, and Education..............................................................................................12 Trees in an Urban Forest....................................................................................................... ..12 Structural Defects in Trees.................................................................................................... .13 Importance of Structural Defect Recognition.........................................................................13 Incorporation In To Education................................................................................................14 2 LITERATURE REVIEW.......................................................................................................15 Benefits of Trees for Children................................................................................................15 Youth Arboricultural Education.............................................................................................15 Importance of Incorporating Arboricultural Subjects.............................................................16 State of Current Curriculum...................................................................................................16 Trees in the Landscape......................................................................................................... ..16 Benefits of Trees for Children................................................................................................17 Importance of Comparing Methods of Instruction.................................................................17 Factors for Success in Incorporatin g New Subjects into Curriculum.....................................18 Historically, Active Learning Outperfo rms Lecture and Passive Learning...........................18 Students Learning Styl es May be Changing.........................................................................18 Concerns over Standardized Testing......................................................................................19 3 MATERIALS AND METHODS...........................................................................................20 4 RESULTS........................................................................................................................ .......36 Recognition of Structural Def ects Pre-Test and Post-Test.....................................................36 Recognition of Structural Defects Pre-Test and Post-Test as a Function of School.............36 Recognition of Structural Defects Pre-Test and Post-Test as a Function of Gender..............36 Recognition of Structural Defects in Trees as a Function of Method of Instruction..............36 Performance in General Arboricultural Knowledge Questions..............................................37 Performance in General Arboricultural Know ledge Questions as a Function of Gender......37 Performance in General Arboricultural K nowledge Questions as a Function School...........37 5 DISCUSSION..................................................................................................................... ....49 General Observations........................................................................................................... ...49 Recognition of Structural Defects Pre-Test a nd Post-Test as a Function of FCAT Grade....50

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7 Recognition of Structural Defects Pre-Test and Post-Test as a Function of Gender..............51 Recognition of Structural Defects in Trees as a Function of Method of Instruction..............51 Performance in General Arboricultural Knowledge Questions..............................................52 Performance in General Arboricultural Know ledge Questions as a Function of Gender......52 Performance in General Arboricultural Know ledge Questions as a Function of School.......53 Recommendations................................................................................................................ ...53 Incorporating Arboriculture and Ho rticulture Into the Curriculum........................................55 Effectiveness of Measuring Knowledge through FCAT Exams............................................55 Effective Methods of Instructing Youth.................................................................................55 PRE-TEST....................................................................................................................... ..............57 POST-TEST...................................................................................................................... .............60 EXAMPLE CONTINGENCY TABLE.........................................................................................63 LIST OF REFERENCES............................................................................................................. ..65 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH.........................................................................................................69

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8 LIST OF FIGURES Figure page 3-1. Five mahogany trees ( Swietenia mahagoni ) used in this study.. Photograph taken April, 2006.................................................................................................................... .....25 3-2. Mahogany tree ( Swietenia mahagoni) used in this study to demonstrate circling/girdling roots. P hotograph taken April, 2006......................................................26 3-3 Mahogany tree ( Swietenia mahagoni) used in this study to demonstrate leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk. Photograph taken April, 2006................................27 3-4. Mahogany tree ( Swietenia mahagoni) used in this study to demonstrate attachments of equal sizes, codominant trunks and include d bark. Photograph taken April, 2006..........28 3-5. Mahogany tree ( Swietenia mahagoni) used in this study to demonstrate a tree with no apparent defects. Photograph taken April, 2006...............................................................29 3-6. Photographs of circling roots used in th e traditional lecture portion of this study. Photograph taken February, 2006......................................................................................30 3-7. Photos of circling roots on school grounds used in the experiential-style instruction portion of this study. Phot ograph taken in May, 2006......................................................31 3-8. Photos of codominant trunk used in th e traditional lecture portion of this study. Photograph taken February, 2006......................................................................................32 3-9. Photos of codominant tr unk on school grounds used in the experiential-style instruction portion of this study. Ph otograph taken May, 2006..........................................................33 3-10. Photographs of desirable ro ot system used in the trad itional lecture por tion of this study. Photographs taken February, 2006.........................................................................34 3-11. Photographs of broken, lean ing, damaged trunks used in th e traditional lecture portion of this study. Photographs taken February, 2006..............................................................35

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9 LIST OF TABLES Table page 4-1. Summary scores of all sixth grade st udents (n= 180), for pretest and post-test on recognition of observable de fects in mahogany trees ( Swietenia mahagoni ). Chisquare critical value at the P= 0.05 level is 11.07; significant differences at the P= 0.05 level are indicated by *..............................................................................................38 4-2. Summary scores of all sixth grade stude nts (n= 180), by school A vs. B vs. C, for posttest recognition of observabl e defects in mahogany trees ( Swietenia mahagoni ). Chisquare critical value at the P= 0.05 is 18.31; significant differences at the P= 0.05 level is indicated by *........................................................................................................39 4-3. Summary scores of all sixth grade stude nts (n= 180), by gender, for pre-test recognition of observable defects in mahogany trees ( Swietenia mahagoni ). Chi-square critical value at the P= 0.05 level is 11.07; signifi cant differences at the P= 0.05 level are indicated by *................................................................................................................. ....40 4-4. Summary scores of all sixth grade students (n= 180), by gender, for post-test recognition of observable de fects in mahogany trees ( Swietenia mahagoni ). Chisquare critical value at the P= 0.05 level is 11.07; significant differences at the P= 0.05 level are indicated by *..............................................................................................40 4-5. Summary scores of all sixth grad e students (n= 180), by instructional method, traditional, photographic vs. experiential hands-on, for pre-test and post-test recognition of observable de fects in mahogany trees ( Swietenia mahagoni ). Chisquare critical value at the P= 0.05 level is 18.31; significant differences at the P= 0.05 level are indicated by *..............................................................................................41 4-6. Summary scores of all sixth grade stude nts (n= 180), by school A vs. B vs. C, for pretest recognition of observabl e defects in mahogany trees ( Swietenia mahagoni ). Chisquare critical value at the P= 0.05 level is 18.31; significant differences at the P= 0.05 level are indicated by *..............................................................................................42 4-7. Summary of all sixth grade students (n = 180) performance on general arboricultural knowledge questions..........................................................................................................43 4-8. Summary all sixth grade students (n = 180) performance on general arboricultural knowledge questions, males vs. females vs. all students...................................................45 4-9. Summary all sixth grade students (n = 180) performance on general arboricultural knowledge questions, school A vs B vs. C vs. all students..............................................47

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10 Abstract of Thesis Presen ted to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science COMPARISON OF TWO METHODS UTILIZED TO TEACH SIXTH GRADE CHILDREN RECOGNITION OF STRUCTURAL DEFECTS IN TREES By Laura Sanagorski December 2006 Chair: George E. Fitzpatrick Committee Members: Kimberly Moore, Eva Worden, William H. Kern, Jr. Major Department: Environmental Horticulture Sixth grade students are capab le of recognizing and compre hending the implications of structural defects in trees. Stru ctural defects in trees were intr oduced to sixth grade students at three schools: Seminole Middle School in Planta tion, Nova Middle School in Davie, Plantation Middle School in Plantation, all located in the Broward County, Florida school district. The schools represented Florida Comprehensive Assessmen t Test (FCAT) school grades of A, B, and C, respectively. These grades are assigned base d on students collective test scores at each school, and are used as a measure of how successful the school is at teaching statewide academic standards. Two methods of instruction: hands-on, experiential instruc tion versus a passive, lecturestyle instruction, were compared in teaching recognition of structur al defects in trees. Through the use of a pre-test and a post-te st, it was determined that students exposed to both methods of instruction were more successful in recognizing defects after instru ction than they were before instruction. Moreover, it was de termined that students exposed to defects in tr ees via lecturestyle classroom instruction perfor med better in the post test than students exposed to the same material via a more hands-on approach. On both tests, students were asked to complete several

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11 arboricultural general knowledge questions. The arboricultural general knowledge questions demonstrated that a significant arboricultural knowledge base exists within the sixth grade classes who participated in this study.

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12 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION Trees, Children, and Education Trees have been proven to be beneficial for children sociall y, physically, and emotionally. Learning about plants and trees is beneficial as well. With limited curriculum currently available on arboriculture and horticulture, education about plants and trees is extremely important, with tree structure being an item of particular significance. Todays adults were exposed to the outdoors mu ch more than todays children are. There is an unprecedented level of electronic media e xposure today, of which the results are not yet known. Trees in an Urban Forest The urban forest encompasses the trees and plan ts within a city environment. An urban forest can be seen as an ecosystem with th e rather unusual components such as pavement, homes, vehicles, commercial properties, and ai rports (Treepeople and Lipkis 1990). Care of urban trees is extremely different from the care of trees in a forest Trees in an urban setting are confined to an artificial habita t that fails to provide an ad equate amount of the light, clean water, unlimited healthy soil, a nd clean air that a tree require s (Treepeople and Lipkis 1990). For this reason, urban trees require special care, both for their well-being and for the protection of the property and individuals th at share their environment. Pr inciples of managing the urban forest must include the social aspect of spaces shared by both people and tr ees. The management of such trees is much more intensive than the ma nagement of trees in a typical, natural forest. Trees are dynamic, living systems. They do not h eal, regenerate, or restore injured parts. They

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13 compartmentalize, or grow special wound-wood to stop the spread of decay (Shigo, 1989). This is one of their survival mechanisms, because tree s are unable to move from detrimental forces. One specific example of the intensive manageme nt required in an urban setting is the recognition and analysis of hazard trees. There are specific require ments for a tree to be deemed as a hazard tree. A hazard tree must have struct ural defects which create th e potential to fail, be located in an environment favorable to failure, and be located in close proximity to a target that would be subjected to the impacts of a failure. The parts of the tree likely to fail must also be of a substantial size. For example, a tree with extremely large, codomin ant leaders and included bark located in the woods is not a hazard tree, even if it is likely to fail. This same tree located on a busy street over a park bench during hurricane season would be a hazard tree. Structural Defects in Trees Common structural defects of landscape trees include ci rcling/girdling roots, a leaning/bent/broken/damaged tr unk, included bark, codominant trunks and attachments of equal sizes. Trees without structural de fects are highly desirable in an urban landscape, because they have reduced risks of failure. Hazard trees, as previously mentioned, have one or more of these structural defects. Hazard trees can cause injury to persons and dama ge to property. Hazard trees have shorter lifespans than trees with good structure, and are more costly to maintain. Importance of Structural Defect Recognition Hazard trees can be recognized when they are at a young age so that planting them can be avoided or proactive measures to correct th e defects can be taken. People who handle trees, such as growers, landscapers, landscape maintenance crews, property management, and homeowners, should be able to recognize significant defects at each stage of trees lives. Recognition of defects in trees relies on the education of those who handle them (Shigo, 2000).

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14 Often, property owners may pay the price for the lack of knowledge rega rding the presence of structural defects in trees. Trees without structural defects are consid ered higher quality and may demand a higher price in the market. However, many buyers and sellers are unable to recognize the difference in tree quality due to lack of educa tion, a real disadvantage. People need to be able to recognize structural defects in trees so that better quality trees can be planted in our landscapes and better quality urban forests produced. Incorporation In To Education There is a deficiency of horticultural and arbor icultural subjects for students. However, recent additions to curriculum have been well -received by both instructors and students (Meyer et al., 2001). Professionals ar e encouraging research into wh at and how arboricultural and horticultural topics can be incorporated (Smith and Motsenbocker 2005). As an added benefits, it is known that these topics can facilitate the instruction of other s ubjects (Nyenhuis, 1994, and Dirks and Orvis, 2005). While typical middle school instruction in Fl orida Public Schools is conducted toward preparation for the Florida Compre hensive Assessment Test teachers are free to teach as they please (Anon., 2005). Structural defect recognition is one subject that can be incorporated into the schools. This study was conducted to find out if 6th grade is an appropriate time to present structural defects in trees as part of the curr iculum. Two teaching methods were compared to find out whether traditional lecture-style classroo m instruction or a more hands-on, experiential approach would be more effective. Previous studies have shown that active, hands-on learning may be the most effective method of teaching students (Hancox, 2005, and Morgan, 1993).

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15 CHAPTER 2 LITERATURE REVIEW Benefits of Trees for Children Trees provide aesthetic and environmental be nefits, and also provide numerous societal ones. Arboriculture and horticultu re have been stated as a f oundation for healthy social ecology (Kuo, 2003) and cause improved life skills in ch ildren (Robinson and Zajicek, 2005). Children also really like to be around trees. They are more likely to congregate in heavily-canopied areas as opposed to less green spaces (Coley et al., 199 7). Activities, such as creative play, tend to occur in green spaces (Faber Taylor et al., 1998 ). Children who have horticultural topics incorporated into their educati on perform better in their science classes than those that do not (Smith and Motsenbocker, 2005; Klemmer et al., 2005; Poston et al., 2005). According to Louv, children absolutely need nature for development and learning. He states that this is apparent by the [negative] re sult of a lack in exposur e and by the magic that occurs when children expe rience the outdoors (Louv, 2005). Youth Arboricultural Education Youth horticultural education is important and beneficial (Phibbs and Relf, 2005; DeMarco et. al., 1999) Nature-related subjects incor porated into current su bject topics increase childrens sense of place, teach them about their local trees and plants, and increase knowledge about local ecology (Spitz, 2002). Even young student s can learn about trees. Second graders in New Hampshire collect data abou t tree diameter both at home a nd in forests surrounding their schools. This data has been used to help determine the age of New Hampshires forests (Lonergan, 1997).

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16 Importance of Incorporating Arboricultural Subjects There is a general need for improved arbor icultural and horticul tural education for children and adults. Education in urban forest ry and arboriculture is extremely important (Elmendorf, 2005). Within this broad subject area, tree structure has been stated as one of the top five most important educational topics in urban forestry and ar boricultural education (Elmendorf, 2005). If the gene ral public were more knowledgeable about these and other arboricultural issues, urban fore sts would be more healthy, more structurally sound, and safer overall. Defects in tree structure could be intr oduced to elementary students to give them a general understanding of these concepts. It is hi ghly important to introd uce children to these topics when they are young in order to produce educated adults (Loucks-Horsely et al., 1990; Lohr and Mims, 2005). State of Current Curriculum There has been limited curriculum developmen t for the purpose of teaching horticulture to elementary students. However, some recent programs and curriculum have been developed and have been well-received by st udents and teachers (Meyer et al., 2001). Youth horticultural education needs to be improved and new topics introduced. More research about incorporating arboriculture and horticulture into classrooms should be conducted (Smith and Motsenbocker, 2005). As an added benefit, the introduction of arboriculture into elementary curriculum can facilitate the instruction of ma th and history, as well as many ot her subjects in the classroom (Nyenhuis, 1994, Dirks and Orvis, 2005). Trees in the Landscape Trees may have life expectancies of many years, and their quality will greatly affect their life in the landscape. In additi on, higher quality trees establis h more quickly and require less maintenance after planting (Anon., 1998). Trees pl anted with structural defects can become

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17 increasingly hazardous as they mature (Anon., 1998) Tree failures are a safety issue in the landscape, but are predictable to the trained eye (Hayes, 2002). Trees in Florida are often graded for quality using the Florida Grades and Standards. Grades are assigned based on the characteristics of a trees crown, trunk, branches root system, and leaves. The presence of structural defects reduce a trees grade (Anon., 1998). Benefits of Trees for Children Structural defects in canopy tr ees include absence of a straig ht single leader, co-dominant trunks, circling/girdling roots, na rrow angles of attachment, and included bark (Hayes, 2002; Anon., 1998, Edberg and Berry, 1999; Kane et al ., 2005; Anon. 1998 (b); Anon. 1993; Smith and Shortle, 2005). The absence or presence of structur al defects in trees is the basis of the Florida Grades and Standards. These standards are freque ntly refered to in urban forestry applications, but are rarely explained to th e layperson. Unless entering a re lated line of work, many people are never exposed to these concepts until eith er faced with code violations or minimum landscaping standards required by their municipality. This topi c could be introduced to the standard elementary curriculum. Importance of Comparing Methods of Instruction While various methods of teaching may provide desired results (Saville, 2006), different methods of instruction should be studied for effectiv eness, so that the best method can be utilized for specific situations (Anderson and Walker, 2003; Poston et al ., 2005). In one study, plant propagation principles were ta ught to students using instruct ional video and face-to-face demonstration. Students who learned from th e demonstration reported better clarity, while students who saw the video performed better on a quiz (Gomez, 2004). Be havioral methods of classroom instruction as opposed to a lecture format have been available and supported since the 1950s (Saville, 2006). Interactive in struction in horticultural topics is believed to produce better

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18 results than a formal textbook approach (Fel mley, 1902). Interactive learning is generally perceived to be more successful than trad itional classroom learning (Saville, 2006). Factors for Success in Incorporat ing New Subjects into Curriculum Communication is critical when adding horticultural topics to school programs. Lack of communication has historically be en a considerable obstacle in incorporating arboricultural and horticultural subjects to a curriculum (Phibbs and Relf, 2005). Success in incorporating horticulture into the classroom is most realisti c when teachers and administration staff are both highly involved (Klemmer et al., 2005). Historically, Active Learning Outperf orms Lecture and Passive Learning Previous studies have shown that more active learning is highly beneficial in comparison to passive learning, such as playing versus watching others play (Bricklin, 1990). The more passive time, such as watching TV, a child or adol escent spent the more likely they were to have poor educational achievement (Hancox, 2005, and Mo rgan, 1993.). A previous study related girls exposure to greenery to in creased test performance and con centration (Faber Taylor et al., 2002). Students Learning Styl es May be Changing Exposure to television and other media has been compared to an i mpending disaster of which the final results are not yet known (Shifrin, 2006); specific interactions between media exposure and performance in school have not ye t been determined (Borzekowski, 2005). This disaster is the unknown result of todays yout hs extreme immersion in television and other media. Children are stated to be exposed to nature today only through electronic detachment (Louv., 2005). The effects will not be known until a multitude of studies are conducted on youth now, as they progress through soci al, emotional, and physical matu ration, and as the adults they become. Todays children are surrounded by more media, such as television and video games,

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19 than ever before (Reading, 2004). Preliminary, in comprehensive consequences to this exposure are beginning to surface. It has been shown that young adults who were exposed to the frequent visual stimulation of such media as children ar e more receptive to graphic novels with limited text than to standard text-only books (Bucher, 2004). This could certainly indicate that instead of media impeding students ability to learn, it coul d be affecting the style in which they learn. Educators have been encouraged to include graphic novels, a growing genre, in middle and secondary classrooms (Bucher, 2004). Instead of media reducing academic achievement, it might change learning styles. This is a cont rast to the generallyaccepted perception that television decreases students abili ty to perform. More research is required to answer this question. If learning styles are being affected by media use among children, education will need to change drastically to reflect changed learning styles, or overall media use would need to be reduced so that instructional st yles would not have to adapt. Concerns over Standardized Testing Education in schools across the nation is based on standardiz ed testing. Standardized testing for schools specifically in Florida are based on the Sunshine State Standards, which are described as appropriate things for students to know and be able to master (Anon., 2005). Since 1988, the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT) has been the method used to measure and determine the success of schools thr oughout the state of Florida in meeting these standards. Approximately $42 million is spent annually by the State of Florida to develop, administer, and score the FCAT (Anon., 2005). Many have expre ssed concern that these tests may not be accurately measuring success in Florida schools (Anon., 2005). Time allocated for recess and physical educati on has dramatically been decreased, and that is in the schools that still provi de any type of this important activity. Time outdoors, including gym class, has been lost, slated as a waste, to time set aside for test preparation (Louv 2005).

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20 CHAPTER 3 MATERIALS AND METHODS To determine the ability of sixth grade students to compre hend and recognize structural defects in trees, one-hundred-e ighty sixth grade students from Seminole Middle School in Plantation, Nova Middle School in Davie, Plantation Middle School in Plantation, in the Broward County, Florida school dist rict, were studied. Class size ranged from 20 to 25. Either three or four classes were utilized from each school. The schools represented Florida Comprehensive Assessment (FCAT) school grad es of A, B, and C (Anon. 2006). The FCAT exam is given to students in grades 1-12, to test their knowledge of the Sunshine State Standards, or statewide-accepted appropriate things for studen ts to know and be able to master (Florida, 2005). The grades of A, B, and C, are assigne d to schools based on their overall performance, with the grade of A being the most desirable. A school graded A based on its FCAT scores is considered to be highly successful in teaching it s students the Sunshine State Standards. Schools graded B, C, D, and E, ar e each considered less successful th an the grades above them. Five container grown mahogany ( Swietenia mahagoni) trees (Figure 2-1) were used in this study to demonstrate the most common defects in trees. One species was used to eliminate confusion, which could have been caused by stud ents perceiving a specie s unique traits as a structural defect. Using only one species allowed for less interference from multiple factors. The trees were potted in 3 gallon containers and clearly labeled to correspond with pre-test and post-test questions. The defects represente d were: circling/girdli ng roots (Figure 3-2), leaning/bent/broken/damaged tr unk (Figure 3-3), co-dominant tr unks and included bark (Figure 3-4). A tree with no apparent defects was also incl uded as an experimental control (Figure 3-5). Trees on school grounds were used for the expe riential, outdoor-instruc ted classes. Prior to this study, the school grounds at each school were inspected and representative trees with each

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21 of the structural defects were chosen for the ha nds-on, experiential instruc tion (Figures 3-7, 3-9). There was one tree representative of a tree with no apparent defects. Preparations for the passive, lecture and photographic type of classroom instruction included photographing the struct ural defects and printing th e photographs on 11 17 paper (Figures 3-6, 3-8). The photos were laminated for durability. The classroom instruction was presented as an en richment activity to ea ch of the classes. Each class was presented with the 5 trees (Fig ures 3-1, 3-2, 3-3, 3-4, 3-5). The pre-test (Appendix A) was administered to a ll classes prior to instruction. The pre-test was in two parts; one part consisted of basic arbo ricultural knowledge and the sec ond part measured the students ability to recognize structural def ects. Students were given instruc tions to take their best guess if they did not understand the question. Student s worked individually an d were given 10 minutes to complete the pre-test (Klemmer et al., 2005). All pre-tests were collected prior to the next st ep in the study. This was to ensure that no one had the advantage of recording the answers for the post-test. Following the pre-test, each class received their respectiv e instruction: hands-on, experi ential outdoor instruction or photographic, classroom-style instruction. The classes designated to learn outdoors on th eir school grounds were given a very brief explanation of the defects they would be looking for. The proper growth structure, such a a straight, single trunk, was explaine d as the preferred structure to the defect, such as a codominant trunk that looks like a Y. St udents were guided in a walk around their school campus and told to look for the specific defects. Members of each cl ass were able to view at least one example of each defect in their school landscape (Figures 37, 3-9). Students were asked to look for the defects as they were led on a walk around their campus. While no defects were pointed out by

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22 the instructor, the instructor would ask the students to identify a defect in a particular tree if no one recognized it. Classes designated for indoor instruction were shown all of the prepar ed photographs in a lecture-style presentation. The pr eferred structure, such as root s that grow away from the trunk, was either explained or shown in a photograph (Figure 3-10), and then compared to the defect, such as circling roots, in a nother photograph (Figure 3-6). Each photograph was walked around the classroom so that each student could ge t a close-up view of th e particular defect. After classes received their respective in struction, a Post-test (Appendix B) was administered. As in the pre-test classes were instructed to answ er a different set of questions regarding basic arboricultural knowledge in the one part and to record the defects they recognized in each tree in another part. The data obtained from 180 pre-tests and 180 post-tests were subjected chi-square analysis. The main potential e ffects [method of instruction, FCAT school grade, gender] were analyzed to determine their e ffect on students performance in both general knowledge questions and recognition of structur al defects in trees. Chi square analysis is used to compare data which falls into definitive categories. In a random, non-biased sample, it is expected that data will fall into categories with equal probability. The expected equal probability is kn own as the null hypothesis. Chi square analysis allows for a statistical analysis to explain deviations to the nu ll hypothesis; deviations may be indicative of a reaction of a particular factor or it can be due to randomness. Chi square analysis can answer this. Contingency tables (Appendix C) were set up to analyze data using the chi-square analysis. First, a c ount of responses, or obs erved values, was compiled. The observed values

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23 were converted into percentages. Next, the expe cted values were calculated. Each column and row of the observed values was summed, and a final value was calculated as the sum of all columns and rows. The expected value was calculated by taking the product of each positions corresponding row sum and column sum, and dividi ng this by the sum of sums. The chi-square value for each position was calculated by taking the square of the difference between each observed and expected value divided by the expected value. The sum of the chi-square values within each contingency table was compared to a critical value from the chi-square table. If the chi square value was larger than the critical va lue, it was stated that the groups being compared were statistically different, or the null hypothesi s was rejected. If th e chi-square value was smaller, the null hypothesis was accepted; the sa mples were not stated to be statistically different. Data collected from general knowledge quest ion portions of both th e pre-test and posttest were compiled to represen t the knowledge base of the ove rall population. Data collected from general knowledge questions were also anal yzed to compare responses based on gender and also to compare responses based on the FCAT grade assigned to each school. General arboricultural knowledge was not a part of the instruction. Howe ver, the data collected was analyzed between schools, gender, and instructional method. Data collected in the structural defect rec ognition portion of the pr e-test was compiled to determine the starting knowledge base for all stud ents. This data was subjected to chi-square analysis to determine if students were equally able to recognize defect s before instruction. Gender and FCAT grade assigned to each school wa s analyzed to determine if any group was more able to recognize structural defects prior to instruction.

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24 Data collected in the structural defect rec ognition portion of the pos t-test was compiled to represent all students performance after instruct ion. This data was compared to the pre-test structural recognition data for all students to determine if the instruction as a whole was successful. The data was partiti oned into subsets of the whole population: all females, all males, all of school A, all of school B, all of school C, all st udents exposed to the outdoor, experiential instruction, a nd all students exposed to th e lecture-style presentation.

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25 Figure 3-1. Five mahogany trees ( Swietenia mahagoni ) used in this study.. Photograph taken April, 2006.

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26 Figure 3-2. Mahogany tree ( Swietenia mahagoni) used in this study to demonstrate circling/girdling roots. P hotograph taken April, 2006.

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27 Figure 3-3 Mahogany tree ( Swietenia mahagoni) used in this study to demonstrate leaning/bent/broken/damaged tr unk. Photograph taken April, 2006.

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28 Figure 3-4. Mahogany tree ( Swietenia mahagoni) used in this study to demonstrate attachments of equal sizes, codominant trunks and incl uded bark. Photograph taken April, 2006.

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29 Figure 3-5. Mahogany tree ( Swietenia mahagoni) used in this study to demonstrate a tree with no apparent defects. Phot ograph taken April, 2006.

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30 Figure 3-6. Photographs of circling roots used in the traditional lecture portion of this study. Photograph taken February, 2006.

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31 Figure 3-7. Photos of circling r oots on school grounds used in th e experiential-st yle instruction portion of this study. Phot ograph taken in May, 2006.

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32 Figure 3-8. Photos of codominant trunk used in the traditional lecture portion of this study. Photograph taken February, 2006.

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33 Figure 3-9. Photos of codomi nant trunk on school grounds used in the expe riential-style instruction portion of this study. Photograph taken May, 2006.

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34 Figure 3-10. Photographs of desira ble root system used in the tr aditional lecture portion of this study. Photographs taken February, 2006. a. b.

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35 Figure 3-11. Photographs of broken, leaning, da maged trunks used in the traditional lecture portion of this study. Phot ographs taken February, 2006. a. b.

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36 CHAPTER 4 RESULTS Recognition of Structural Defects Pre-Test and Post-Test There was a significant improvement in ability to identify to identify structural defects in the sample trees between the pre-test and post-te st for the population as a whole (Table 4-1). Regardless of a schools FCAT grade, gender, or method of instruction, all groups improved in structural defect recognition (Tables 4-2, 4-3, 4-4, 4-5). Recognition of Structural Defects Pre-Test and Post-Test as a Function of School For trees, #1-5, there was a si gnificant difference in school pe rformances pre-test (Table 4-6), however this difference di d not correspond to the schools FCAT grades. A higher school score on the FCAT exam did not co rrelate to a higher score on the pre-test or on the post-test. Recognition of Structural Defects Pre-Test and Post-Test as a Function of Gender For all trees, #1-5, there wa s no significant difference between all males and females, both pre-test and post-test (Tables 4-3, 4-5). This indicates that both males and females performed equally both pretest and made significant and equal progress in recognizing structural defects in trees. Neither males nor females performed better than the other. Recognition of Structural Defects in Trees as a Function of Method of Instruction For all trees, #1-5, there wa s a significant difference between performances based on methods of instruction (Table 46). Data indicate that students learned, but students taught in the indoor classroom performed better after instruct ion than did those who learned in the outdoor setting (Table 4-6). There is a significant diffe rence between performan ces based on methods of instruction.

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37 Performance in General Arboricu ltural Knowledge Questions For all general knowledge questions in the pr e-test, numbered 1-6, st udents recognized the correct response on average 67% of the time (Tab le 4-7). Rate of success ranged from 23.89% to 89.44% (Table 4-7). 60.00% of students are able to recognize that not all trees lose their leaves in the fall. 80.56% of students were able to recognize that trees planted in cities require more care. A majority of students, 83.33%, 75.00%, and 51.11%, respectively, were able to recognize the correct responses that when people care for tr ees properly, the trees might live longer, will be healthier, and will be safer. 70.56% of students were able to recognize that pruning can be beneficial but must be done properly. Only 23.89% of students were able to recognize that a Sequoia tree grew the biggest out of the four trees provided. (Table 4-7) Performance in General Arboricultural Know ledge Questions as a Function of Gender For all general knowledge questions in the pre-test, the null hypothesis, there was no significant difference in genera l arboricultural knowledge betw een males and females, is accepted (Table 4-8). Performance in General Arboricultural Kn owledge Questions as a Function School Data collected for all general knowledge questio ns indicate that ther e is no difference in general arboricultural kn owledge between the three schools. 2 out of 11 ar e significantly different in comparing schools graded A, B, and C to the total popula tion (Table 4-9).

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38 Table 4-1. Summary scores of all sixth grade students (n= 180) for pre-test and post-test on recognition of observable de fects in mahogany trees ( Swietenia mahagoni ). Chisquare critical value at the P= 0.05 level is 11.07; significant differences at the P= 0.05 level are indicated by *. Tree Number Defect on the tree % All Students Identifying the Defect Correctly Pre-Test % All Students Identifying the Defect Correctly Post-Test Chi-Square 1 No defect 40.00 52.78 6.74 2 Trunk 82.78 88.89 7.88 3 Trunk 77.78 76.67 33.37* 3 Included Bark 27.78 25.00 33.37* 3 Codominant 21.11 57.22 33.37* 4 Trunk 53.89 52.78 31.23* 4 Codominant 31.11 81.67 31.23* 4 Attachments of Equal Sizes 30.00 37.22 31.23* 5 Circling Roots 46.11 78.33 23.80*

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39 Table 4-2. Summary scores of all sixth grade students (n= 180), by school A vs. B vs. C, for post-test recognition of observa ble defects in mahogany trees ( Swietenia mahagoni ). Chi-square critical value at the P= 0.05 is 18.31; significa nt differences at the P= 0.05 level is indicated by *. Tree Defect % All Students Identifying Correctly Pre-Test % School A Identifying Correctly Post-Test % School B Identifying Correctly Post-Test % School C Identifying Correctly Post-Test Chi-Square 1 No defect 40.00 59.09 34.41 53.49 33.59* 2 Trunk 82.78 88.64 40.86 88.37 44.30* 3 Trunk 77.78 70.45 40.86 83.72 72.03* 3 Included Bark 27.78 20.45 21.51 30.23 72.03* 3 Codominant 21.11 50.00 15.05 65.12 72.03* 4 Trunk 53.89 31.82 40.86 72.09 92.39* 4 Codominant 31.11 75.00 15.05 72.09 92.39* 4 Attachments of Equal Sizes 30.00 25.00 13.98 39.53 92.39* 5 Circling Roots 46.11 68.18 24.73 79.07 50.95*

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40 Table 4-3. Summary scores of all sixth grade students (n= 180), by gender, for pre-test recognition of observable de fects in mahogany trees ( Swietenia mahagoni ). Chisquare critical value at the P= 0.05 level is 11.07; significant differences at the P= 0.05 level are indicated by *. Tree Defect % Males Identifying Correctly Pre-Test % Females Identifying Correctly Pre-Test Chi-Square 1 No defect 37.89 42.86 0.82 2 Trunk 83.16 83.33 6.42 3 Trunk 76.84 78.57 2.47 3 Included Bark 24.21 30.95 2.47 3 Codominant 21.05 21.43 2.47 4 Trunk 54.74 52.38 4.07 4 Codominant 35.79 25.00 4.07 4 Attachments of Equal Sizes 26.32 34.52 4.07 5 Circling Roots 41.05 52.38 3.33 Table 4-4. Summary scores of all sixth grade students (n= 180), by gender, for post-test recognition of observable de fects in mahogany trees ( Swietenia mahagoni ). Chisquare critical value at the P= 0.05 level is 11.07; significant differences at the P= 0.05 level are indicated by *. Tree Defect % Males Identifying Correctly Post-Test % Females Identifying Correctly Post-Test Chi-Square 1 No defect 54.74 50.00 3.47 2 Trunk 86.32 91.67 9.85 3 Trunk 70.53 83.33 9.92 3 Included Bark 18.95 30.95 9.92 3 Codominant 64.21 48.81 9.92 4 Trunk 46.32 59.25 4.88 4 Codominant 82.11 80.95 4.88 4 Attachments of Equal Sizes 35.79 39.29 4.88 5 Circling Roots 80.00 76.19 1.44

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41 Table 4-5. Summary scores of all sixth grade students (n= 180), by instructional method, traditional, photographic vs. experiential hands-on, for pre-test and post-test recognition of observable de fects in mahogany trees ( Swietenia mahagoni ). Chisquare critical value at the P= 0.05 level is 18.31; significant differences at the P= 0.05 level are indicated by *. Tree Defect % All Students Recognizing Pre-Test % Traditional Recognizing Post-Test % Experiential Recognizing Post-Test Chi-Square 1 No defect 32.96 10.53 30.95 44.45* 2 Trunk 83.24 100 72.62 19.76* 3 Trunk 78.21 94.74 57.14 42.84* 3 Included Bark 27.93 28.42 21.43 42.84* 3 Codominant 21.23 56.84 58.33 42.84* 4 Trunk 54.19 67.37 36.90 58.29* 4 Codominant 31.28 95.79 66.67 58.29* 4 Attachments of Equal Sizes 30.17 43.16 30.95 58.29* 5 Circling Roots 46.37 96.84 58.33 48.71*

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42 Table 4-6. Summary scores of a ll sixth grade students (n= 180), by school A vs. B vs. C, for pretest recognition of observabl e defects in mahogany trees ( Swietenia mahagoni ). Chisquare critical value at the P= 0.05 level is 18.31; significant differences at the P= 0.05 level are indicated by *. Tree Defect % School A Identifying Correctly Pre-Test % School B Identifying Correctly Pre-Test % School C Identifying Correctly Pre-Test Chi-Square 1 No defect 47.73 34.41 44.19 29.18 2 Trunk 75.00 40.86 81.40 25.98* 3 Trunk 77.27 40.86 79.07 26.18* 3 Included Bark 27.27 21.51 39.53 26.18* 3 Codominant 15.91 15.05 27.91 26.18* 4 Trunk 56.82 40.86 46.51 28.88* 4 Codominant 18.18 15.05 46.51 28.88* 4 Attachments of Equal Sizes 22.73 13.98 27.91 28.88* 5 Circling Roots 34.09 24.73 51.16 22.85*

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43 Table 4-7. Summary of all sixt h grade students (n= 180) perfo rmance on general arboricultural knowledge questions. Question # Correct Question Response Percentage of Students Recognizing What does a tree need to live? Pre-Test 1 1a: Water 89.44% What does a tree need to live? Pre-Test 1 1b: Soil 77.78% All trees lose their leaves in the fall. Pre-Test 2 2b: False 60.00% Trees with good structure: Pre-Test 3 3a: Will live longer. 75.00% Trees with good structure: Pre-Test 3 3c: Will be safer in the future. 39.44% The bark on different trees: Pre-Test 4 4d: Is different from tree to tree. 86.67% A plant: Pre-Test 5 5a: Is a living organism. 77.78% A plant: Pre-Test 4 5e: Is able to make its own food. 62.22% Trees: Pre-Test 6 6a: Need more care when they are planted in cities. 80.56% When people care for trees properly: Post-Test 1 1a: Trees might live longer. 83.33% When people care for trees properly: Post-Test 1 1c: Trees will be healthier. 75.00% When people care for trees properly: Post-Test 1 1d: Trees will be safer. 51.11%

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44 The seed of an oak tree is called: Post Test 2 2c: An acorn. 58.89% Trees with good structure: Post Test 3 3a: Will live longer. 80.56% Trees with good structure: Post Test 3 3b: Will be safer. 55.56% Which tree grows biggest? Post Test 4 4b: Sequoia 23.89% When pruning a tree: Post Test 5 5c: Pruning can be beneficial but must be done properly. 70.56%

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45 Table 4-8. Summary all sixth grade students (n= 180) perfor mance on general arboricultural knowledge questions, males vs. females vs. all students. Question Correct Answer % of Males Answering Correctly % of Females Answering Correctly % of All Students Answering Correctly Critical Value Chi-Square What does a tree need to live? Water 89.47 89.29 89.94 12.59 3.30 What does a tree need to live? Soil 77.89 78.57 78.21 12.59 3.30 All trees lose their leaves in the fall (True/False) False 60.34 59.43 60.15 5.99 0.09 Trees with good structure: Will live longer. 71.58 78.57 75.42 9.49 1.34 Trees with good structure: Will be safer in the future. 40.00 39.29 39.66 9.49 1.34 The bark on different trees: Is different from tree to tree. 84.21 89.29 87.15 12.6 0.14 A plant: Is a living organism. 76.84 79.76 78.21 18.3 4.28 A plant: Cannot move from one spot. 25.26 26.19 25.70 18.3 4.28 A plant: Is able to make its own food. 65.26 58.33 62.57 18.3 4.28 The seed of an Oak tree is called: An acorn. 65.26 51.19 59.22 12.6 3.60 Trees with good structure: May live longer. 78.95 82.14 81.01 9.49 0.54 Trees with good structure: Will be safer. 58.95 51.19 55.87 9.49 0.54 Which tree grows biggest? Sequoia. 27.37 20.24 24.02 12.6 2.36

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46 When pruning a tree: Pruning can be beneficial but must be done properly. 77.89 61.90 70.95 9.49 4.38

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47 Table 4-9. Summary all sixth grade students (n= 180) perfor mance on general arboricultural knowledge questions, school A vs B vs. C vs. all students. Question Correct Answer % of All Students Answering Correctly % of School A Answering Correctly % of School B Answering Correctly % of School C Answering Correctly Critical Value ChiSquare What does a tree need to live? Water 89.94 84.09 93.55 86.05 16.9 16.28 What does a tree need to live? Soil 78.21 75.00 75.79 41.67 16.9 16.28 All trees lose their leaves in the fall (True/False) False 60.34 52.27 68.82 48.84 7.81 6.78 Trees with good structure: Will live longer. 75.42 79.55 72.04 76.74 12.6 9.63 Trees with good structure: Will be safer in the future. 39.66 27.27 47.31 34.88 12.6 9.63 The bark on different trees: Is different from tree to tree. 87.15 84.09 91.40 79.07 16.9 17.77* A plant: Is a living organism. 78.21 70.45 86.02 67.44 25.0 2.82 A plant: Cannot move from one spot. 25.70 25.00 32.26 11.63 25.0 2.82 A plant: Is able to make its own food. 62.57 61.36 60.22 67.44 25.0 2.82 The seed of an Oak tree is called: An acorn. 59.22 63.64 61.29 48.84 16.9 24.99 Trees with good structure: May live longer. 81.01 81.81 38.71 81.72 12.6 5.94

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48 Trees with good structure: Will be safer. 55.87 50.00 23.66 60.22 12.6 5.94 Which tree grows biggest? Sequoia. 24.02 20.45 27.96 18.60 16.9 26.70* When pruning a tree: Pruning can be beneficial but must be done properly. 70.95 68.18 32.26 75.27 12.6 9.08

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49 CHAPTER 5 DISCUSSION General Observations Students seemed to generally enjoy this inst ruction, as did their classroom teachers. During the pre-test, students expre ssed feelings of frustration in that they were being tested on concepts that had not previously presented to them. This may be a result of the testpreparation mentality to which students are exposed. Sit seemed as if students were not very prepared to learn about everyday, real life subj ects. This could impede their acceptance and enjoyments of studying subjects for reasons other that success on an exam. Many of the students exposed to the outdoor, hands-on instructi on in tree defects seemed less interested in the class and highly distracted. In co mparison to the traditional, indoor, photographic-type sessions, the outdoor class sessions were more difficult to control. Many of the students who were taken out doors exhibited poor behavior. It was suggested that students may not spend enough time outdoors during the school day. The outdoor class sessions may have felt like a recess to many students. While they were being introduced to new concep ts, they seemed almost indiff erent to being surrounded by their everyday environment. In contrast, students ex posed to the photographs seemed interested, fascinated, and delighted by the images. This co uld imply an extremely visual inclination in 6th grade students who participated in this study. Students may be accustomed to intense visual exposure, so much that they need this impact in order to respond. Anot her possible explanation to this phenomenon could be that the instructor may have been more skilled in the lecture-type instruction and less effective in leading a hands-on session. Most students reacted positively to the posttest. It was observed that students were proud of being able to recognize th e correct answers. Several stude nts indicated a desire to be

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50 more involved with the care and selection of tr ees both at home and around their school grounds. This was considered a success, in that many students made cognitive associations what they learned in one instruction to what went on in their outdoor environments, as opposed to connecting it to only a correct answer on an ex am. Student comments indicative of their new interests showed that they can easily grasp thes e concepts and can become more caring stewards for our urban forests. One significant obstacle in setti ng up this study was to schedule time with the classes. It was alarming that teachers were concerned that th e instruction on tree structural defects was not on the FCATs and that one class period of FCAT preparation would be lost. Most students frustration in that they were be ing tested on concepts in the pr e-test that had not previously presented to them suggests that they are be ing conditioned to perfor m well on tests. Many students had a lot of trouble making guesses and th inking outside of test-r elated studies. Students are being taught to be successful on the FCATs, as a school s overall score is beneficial to the school. For th is reason, students may not be as r eady to explore subjects that are related to success in daily life, as opposed to success on standard ized exams. Students exposed to the photographs were interest ed, fascinated, and delighted by the images. While the images may have been of unfamiliar concepts, they were examples that were not outside of their ability to comprehend. The excitement over the images was surprising and unexpected. Recognition of Structural Defects Pre-Test and Post-Test as a Function of FCAT Grade For all trees, #1-5, there was a significant difference between school performances pre-test. However, this difference did not correspond with the A school consiste ntly performing better that the other schools. Test results indicated that school C students were most successful in

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51 recognizing the correct structural defects on most pre-test and pos t-test questions, with school A students in the middle, and school B students identifying the fewest. This study resulted in an overall increase in th e ability of students to recognize structural defects in trees following both type s of instruction. The biggest cont rast in expectations was that the students who were instructed with the traditional photographic cl assroom method scored higher in the post-test than thos e who learned in the experiential method. One explanation might be that there were fewer distr actions in the classroom. The indoor classroom is the typical environment to which students are accustomed. Another explanation could be that todays youth are more completely immersed in media: they watch more television and play more video games than previous generations. Learning styles ma y be changing because of the intensive media exposure. The results of this study could raise an important question: Does education need to shift teaching methods to reflect this change in youth activities? Recognition of Structural Defects Pre-Test and Post-Test as a Function of Gender Success in structural defect recognition signi ficantly increased from the pre-test to the post-test. Defect recognition in th e trees both pre-test and post-tes t was not affected by gender. This shows that males and females were equally competent in both rec ognizing tree structural defects presented in this study and in learning to recognize them. While there may be previous assumptions that scientific ability is pred etermined by gender (Tindall 2004, Nordvik 1998, and Sonnert 1995), neither gender had any advantage ove r the other in this study, a positive sign for todays equality-conscious society. Recognition of Structural Defects in Trees as a Function of Method of Instruction While all groups were successful in learning to recognize structural de fects in trees, the group that learned via the tradit ional classroom lecture with photographs had higher scores

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52 following their instructio n. As previously mentioned, student s may currently be less exposed to outdoor experiences and therefore could be more easily distracted outside of their classroom. The difference between instructional methods may also be attributed to the skill or deficiency of the instructor. An additional possible explanation may be the students attraction to the visuallystimulating photographs. Performance in General Arboricu ltural Knowledge Questions It is gratifying to know that most st udents were able to understand many basic arboricultural knowledge principles without prior instruc tion. A majority of students understand that trees need more care when pl anted in cities, and that proper care and tree structure result in healthier, safer trees that will live longer. Mo st students recognized that a difference exists between the right way and a wrong way to prune a tree, and that correct pruning can be beneficial to the tree. The existence of a good base of arboricultural knowledge is a positive indication that sixth grade students are prepared to learn mo re complex principles of tree care. Performance in General Arboricultural Know ledge Questions as a Function of Gender For all general arboricultural knowledge questions, there was no significant differerence in test scores between males and females, sugge sting that sixth grader s have equal general arboricultural knowledge regardless of gender. As with the success in structural defect recognition, this success could be considered to be a positive finding for our equality-conscious society.

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53 Performance in General Arboricultural Knowle dge Questions as a Function of School Only two responses resulted in significant difference between schools; the majority was statistically the same. Pre-test question #4, the bark on different tr ees is (different from tree to tree), post-test question #4, which tree grows biggest?... (sequoia) were the only questions for which results indicated significant differences be tween schools. More students from school B recognized correct answers on pre-test question #4 and post-test question #4. This is in direct contrast with pre-test and post-test tree structural defect recognition, in which school B repeatedly recognized the correct answer less often than the other two schools. It was expected that the school with an FCAT grade of A w ould be most successful on the general knowledge questions, as FCAT schools with a grade of A are generally assumed to be more successful. More information and study would be needed to make any claims regarding the successes or deficiencies in the FCATs abilit y to measure students knowledge. FCAT exams are a standard, minimally subjectiv e measure that are currently applied on a state-wide level. Data collected from the ge neral knowledge questions indicates there is no difference in general arboricultura l knowledge based on FCAT grade. There is no logical pattern such as students from School A being consiste ntly more successful in identifying the correct answer. Recommendations Children may have been so distracted in the ou tdoor instructional sessions because it is not a common experience for them. The findings of this study may suggest that a combination of two items needs to occur: education needs to ch ange to mirror the changing needs of children exposed to high levels of electronic media, and ch ildren need to be exposed to the outdoors much more than they currently are, so that they can appreciate and learn from an outdoor educational

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54 experience. These two options need to be inve stigated more thoroughly. Future studies should focus on current learning styles as related to the results of excessi ve media exposure. There are a multitude of benefits associated with child ren spending time outdoors; it would be highly beneficial for them to spend more time outside and less time immersed in media. Students and teachers would benefit from a mo re unified curriculum across the board, with more focus on real-life experience and less on standardized exam performance. The development of stronger critical thinking skills in children should be an aspect of future curriculum changes. Children should run, play, and learn from the environment around them the trees, plants, grass, and insects not the TV and video game s. This study sends a clear message: children desperately need to get out side to play and learn!

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55 CHAPTER 6 FUTURE WORK Incorporating Arboriculture and Horticulture Into the Curriculum This study has shown that principles of arbor iculture and horticulture can positively and easily be incorporated into existing curriculum and that students can learn them effectively following passive, photographic instructional format. Structural defect r ecognition in trees and other critical thinking exercises co uld be presented to different ag es and grades. Other important arboricultural and horticultural concepts should be studied as to the feasibility of their incorporation into the elementa ry and high school curriculum. Examples of some of these concepts are: proper planting, pruning young trees for structur e, care and maintenance of maturing and mature trees, and recognizing nutritional deficiencies, common pests and diseases in the landscape. Effectiveness of Measuring Kn owledge through FCAT Exams More research is necessary to determine wh ether test-taking ability or actual knowledge is the focus in schools in the state of Florid a. The relationship between a schools FCAT performance, their actual collective knowledge, th eir test-taking abilities and their ability to learn should be explored. Effective Methods of Instructing Youth The higher post-test scores among students w ho were taught using a passive photographic format may raise the important que stion of whether education needs to shift to reflect changes in

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56 youth exposure to media. This issue should be studied more comprehensively using varied populations, arboricultural and horticultural subjects, and instructional methods.

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57 APPENDIX A PRE-TEST Pre-test used in this study and given to all st udents prior to exposing them to their designated method of instruction. Side (page) one provi des space to record demographic information: students name, age, gender, class, and grade. This information wa s used to ensure pre-test and post-test data was grouped approp riately. Side (page) one provide s space to record the defect(s) present in each tree. Side (page) two presents general arboricultural kn owledge questions. This pre-test was presented in-class regardless of designated inst ructional method and collected immediately upon completion and prior to the inst ruction on structural defect recognition in trees. For all questions on both sides one and two, students were instructed that more than one answer might be correct and to circle as many as they believed were co rrect. Administered in May, 2006.

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58 PRE-TEST NAME AGE SEX CLASS GRADE Look at the trees, labeled #1 #5 and use them to answer the following. More than one answer can be circled. Tree#1 a. circling/ girdling roots b. leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk c. included bark d. codominant trunks e. attachments of equal sizes f. no apparent defects Tree#2 a. circling/ girdling roots b. leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk c. included bark d. codominant trunks e. attachments of equal sizes f. no apparent defects Tree #3 a. circling/ girdling roots b. leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk c. included bark d. codominant trunks e. attachments of equal sizes f. no apparent defects Tree #4 a. circling/ girdling roots b. leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk c. included bark d. codominant trunks e. attachments of equal sizes f. no apparent defects Tree #5 a. circling/ girdling roots b. leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk c. included bark d. codominant trunks e. attachments of equal sizes f. no apparent defects

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59 PRE-TEST More than one answer can be circled. #1 What does a tree need to live? a. water b. soil c. earthworms d. grass #2 All trees lose their leaves in the fall a. True b. False #3 Trees with good structure: a. will live longer b. are no different than trees with bad structure c. will be safer in the future #4 The bark on different trees: a. Is exactly the same b. Is always rough c. Is not important to the tree d. Is different from tree to tree #5 A plant : a. Is a living organism b. Cannot move from one spot c. Is only different from an animal because it cannot talk d. Is always grown in soil e. Is able to make its own food f. Always has green leaves #6 Trees a. need more care when they are planted in cities b. dont need people to do anything for them

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60 APPENDIX B POST-TEST Post-test used in this study and given to all students following exposure to their designated method of instruction. Side (page) one provi des space to record demographic information: students name, age, gender, class, and grade. This information wa s used to ensure pre-test and post-test data was grouped approp riately. Side (page) one provide s space to record the defect(s) present in each tree. Side (page) two presents general arboricultural kn owledge questions. This post-test was presented in-class regardless of designated instru ctional method and was collected immediately upon completion. For all questions on both sides one and two, students were instructed that more than one answer might be correct and to circle as many as they believed were correct. Students were required to work independently on the post-t est. Administered in May, 2006.

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61 POST-TEST NAME AGE SEX CLASS GRADE Look at the trees, labeled #1 #5 and use them to answer the following. More than one answer can be circled. Tree#1 a. circling/ girdling roots b. leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk c. included bark d. codominant trunks e. attachments of equal sizes f. no apparent defects Tree#2 a. circling/ girdling roots b. leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk c. included bark d. codominant trunks e. attachments of equal sizes f. no apparent defects Tree #3 a. circling/ girdling roots b. leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk c. included bark d. codominant trunks e. attachments of equal sizes f. no apparent defects Tree #4 a. circling/ girdling roots b. leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk c. included bark d. codominant trunks e. attachments of equal sizes f. no apparent defects Tree #5 a. circling/ girdling roots b. leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk c. included bark d. codominant trunks e. attachments of equal sizes f. no apparent defects

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62 POST-TEST More than one answer can be circled. #1 When people care for trees properly: a. trees might live longer b. they are wasting their time c. trees will be healthier d. trees will be safer #2 The seed of an oak tree is called a. an apple. b. a bulb c. an acorn d. a mushroom #3 Trees with good structure: a. will live longer b. will be safer c. are no different than trees with poor structure #4 Which tree grows biggest? a. Crepe Myrtle b. Sequoia c. Oak tree d. Yellow Tabebuia #5 When pruning a tree: a. there is no right or wrong way b. trees should not be pruned c. pruning can be beneficial but must be done properly

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63 APPENDIX C EXAMPLE CONTINGENCY TABLE Example contingency table. Calc ulated June-September, 2006. Chisquare analysis is used to compare data which falls into definitive categ ories. In a random, non-biased sample, it is expected that data will fall into categories with equal probability. The expected equal probability is known as the null hypothesis. Ch i-square analysis allows for a statistical analysis to explain deviations to the null hypothesis; deviations may be indicative of a reaction of a particular factor or it can be due to randomness. Chi-square analysis can answer th is. Contingency tables are set up to analyze data using the chi s quare analysis. First, a count of responses, or observed values, is compiled. The observed values are converted into percentages by dividing the number of responses by the total population of the group. Next, the expected values are calculated. Each column and row of the observed values is summed, and a final value is calc ulated as the sum of all columns and rows. The expected value is calculated by taking the product of each positions corresponding row sum and column sum, and dividi ng this by the sum of sums. The chi square value for each position is calculated by squa ring the difference between each observed and expected value divided by the expected value. The sum of the chi-square values within the contingency table is compared to a critical value from the chi-squa re table. If the chi square value is larger than the critical value, it is stat ed that the groups being compared are statistically different, or the null hypothesis is rejected. If the chi-square va lue is smaller, the null hypothesis is accepted; the samples are not stated to be st atistically different. In this example, the null hypothesis is accepted; samples are not considered statistically different.

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64 Tree #3 Observed Values Incorrect Correct Correct Co rrect Incorrect Incorrect Circling roots Trunk Included bark Codominant trunks Attachments of equal sizes No apparent defects Totals Pre-Test, Traditional 28 89 33 25 27 19 221 Pre-Test, Outdoor 14 51 17 13 18 10 123 Observed Values, % Total Pre-Test, Traditional 25.23% 80.18% 29.73% 22.52% 24.32% 17.12% 199.10% Pre-Test, Outdoor 20.29% 73.91% 24.64% 18.84% 26.09% 14.49% 178.26% Total 45.52% 154.09% 54.37% 41.36% 50.41% 31.61% 377.36% Expected Values Pre-Test, Traditional 24.01% 81.30% 28.68% 21.82% 26.60% 16.68% Pre-Test, Outdoor 21.50% 72.79% 25.68% 19.54% 23.81% 14.93% Chi Square Values Chi-square = (Observed ValueExpected Value)2 / Expected Value Pre-Test, Traditional 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 Pre-Test, Outdoor 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 Totals 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 Chi-square 0.73 Because the chi-square, 0.73, is smaller than the table value (11.07) at the 0.05 level with 5 degrees of freedom, we accept the null hypothesi s (that there is no difference between the students assigned to the two methods of instruction Pre-test) for tree #3.

PAGE 65

65 LIST OF REFERENCES Anon. 1993. University of Florida. How to r ecognize and prevent hazard trees. Fact Sheet DH 102. Anon. 1998 (a). Grades and Standards for Nurser y Plants. Florida Department of Agricultural and Consumer Services. Tallahassee, FL. Anon. 1998(b). US Park Service. Hazard Tree Guidelines. Anon. 2001. American Standard for Nurser y Stock. American Nursery and Landscape Association, Washington, D.C. Anon. 2005. FCAT Myths vs. Facts. Florida De partment of Education, Tallahassee, FL. www.firn.edu/doe/sas/fcat/pdf/myths-facts.pdf Last accessed October 1, 2006. Anon. 2006. Florida Comprehensive Assessment Te st (FCAT) 2006, Sunshine State Standards, State Report of District Resu lts, Grade 05, Science. Florid a Department of Education, Tallahassee, FL. Antonietti, A., and R. Mellone. 2003. The diff erence between playing games with and without the computer: a preliminary view. The Journal of Psychology 137(2) 133-145. Athman, J.A. and M.C. Monroe. 2001. Elem ents of effective environmental education programs. Eric Document Re production Serv. No. ED 463 936. Borzekowski, D.L.G, and T.N. Robinson. 2005. The remote, the mouse, and the no. 2 pencil. Archives of Pediatric and Adolescen t Medicine 159 (July 2005) 607-613 Bricklin, Mark. 1990. Why Johnny cant learn (televisions advers e effect on childrens ability to learn). Prevention 42(11). 144-145. Bucher, K.T., and M.L. Manning. 2004. Bringing graphic novels into a schools curriculum. The Clearing House 78(2). 67-72. Coley, R.L., Kuo, F.E., and W.C. Sullivan. 1997. Where does community grow? The social context created by nature in urban public housing. Environmental Behavior 294:468-492. DeMarco, L.W., D Relf, and A. McDaniel. 1999. Integrating gardening into the elementary school curriculum. Hort Technology 9(2):276-281. Dirks, A.E., and K. Orvis. 2005. An evaluation of the junior master gard ener program in third grade classrooms. Ho rtTechnology 15(3): 443-447. Edberg, R., and A. Berry. 1999. Patterns of stru ctural failures in urba n trees: coast live oak ( Quercus agrifolia ). Journal of Arboriculture 25(1): 48-55.

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66 Elmendorf, W., Watson, T., and S. Lily. 2005. Arboriculture and ur ban forestry education in the United States: results of an educators surve y. Journal of Arboricu lture 31(3): 138-149. Faber Taylor, A., Kuo, F.E., & Sullivan, W.C. 2002. Views of nature and self-discipline: evidence from inner city children. Journal of Envir onmental Psychology 22, 49-63. Faber Taylor, A., Wiley, A., Kuo, F.E., and W.C. Sullivan. 1998. Growing up in the inner city: green spaces as places to grow Environmental Behavior 301, 3-27. Fields, Scott. 2002. If a tree falls in the cit y. Environmental Health Perspectives 110(7) 392. Felmley, David. Horticulture in the elementary schools. 1902. The Elementary School Teacher 3(2): 96-102. Gomez, Nadilia. 2004. Is an instructional vi deo better than a face-t o-face demo to teach Tbudding in an intro plant propagation course? HortTechnology 14(4). Hancock, R.J., Milne, B.J., and R. Poulton. 2005. Association of te levision viewing during childhood with poor educational achievement. Arch ives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine 159(7). 614-618. Hayes, Ed. 2002. Tree risk assessment a nd mechanics. Arborist News Dec. 2002. Klemmer, C.D., Walliczek, T.M., and J.M. Zaji cek. 2005 (a). Development of a science achievement evaluation instrument for a sc hool garden program. HortTechnology 15(3): 433438. Klemmer, C.D., Walliczek, T.M., and J.M. Zajice k. 2005 (b). Growing Minds: the effect of a school gardening program on the science achieveme nt of elementary students. HortTechnology 15(3): 448-452, Kuo, Frances E. 2003. The role of arboricultu re in a healthy social ecology. Journal of Arboriculture 29(3): 148-155. Lohr, V.I., and C.H. Pearson-Mims. 2005. Children s active and passive interations with plants influence their attitudes and actions toward tr ees and gardening as adults. 2005. HortTechnolgy 15(3): 472-476. Lonergan, Diane. 1997. Network science: bats, birds, and trees. (teaching science-related subjects through computers). Educ ational Leadership 55(3): 34-36. Loucks-Horsely, S., Kapitan, R., Carlson, M., Ku erbis, P., Clark, R., Melle, G.M., Sachse, T., and W. Walton. 1990. Elementary school science for the s. The Network, Inc., Andover, Mass.

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67 Louv, Richard. 2005. Last child in the woods: savi ng our children from natu re-deficit disorder. Algonquin Books of Chapel Hi ll. New York, New York. Meyer, M.H., N.N. Hegland, and P. Fairbourne. 2001. Junior master gardener programs in Minnesota. HortTechnology 11(4): 665-667. Morgan, M. Television and sc hool performance. 1993. Adolescent Medicine 1993 (4). 607622. Nordvik, H., and B. Amponsah. 1998. Gender differe nces in spatial abilit ies and spatial ability among university students in an egalitarian e ducational system. Sex Roles: A Journal of Research 38(11-12) 1009-1024. Nyenhuis, Michael. 1994. The living classroo ms idea. American Forests March/April: 38. OCallaghan, Angela M. 2005. Creating a school gardens program in the challenging environement of Las Vegas, Ne vada. HortTechnology 15(3): 429-433. Ott, R.L., and M. Longenecker. 2001. St atistical Methods and Data Analysis, 5th ed. Wadsworth Group, Pacific Grove, CA. Phibbs, E.J., and D. Relf. 2005. Improving rese arch on youth gardening. HortTechnology 15(3): 425-428. Poston, S.A., Shoemaker, C.A., and D.A. Dzewa ltowski. 2005. A comparison of a gardening and nutrition program with a standard nutriti on program in an out-of-school setting. HortTechnology 15(3): 463-467. Potera, Carol. Green spaces raise chances of success. 2003. Environmental Health Perspectives 111(13) (Oct. 2003) 694. Robinson, C.W., and J.M. Zajicek. 2005. Grow ing Minds: the effects of a one-year school garden program on six constructs of life skills of elementary school children. HortTechnology 15(3): 453-457. Saville, B.K., Zinn, T.E., Neef, N.A., Van Norma n, R., and S.J. Ferreri. 2006. A comparison of interteaching and lecture in the co llege classroom. Journal of A pplied Behavior Analysis 39(1) 49-61. Shifrin, Donald. 2006. Effect of media on childr en and adolescents. Archive of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine 160 (4). 448-450. Smith, K.T., and W.C. Shortle. 2005. A firs t look at tree decay. USDA Forest Service Publication NA-PR-02-98.

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68 Smith, L.L., and C.E. Motsenbocker. 2005. Impact of hands-on science through school gardening in Louisianna public elementa ry schools. HortTechnology 15(3): 439-443. Sonnert, Gerhard. 1995. Gender equality in science: still an elusive goal. Issues in Science and Technology 12(2) 23-29. Spitz, Katherine. 2002. Landscape solutions to school problems. School Planning and Management April 2002: 18-22. Tindall, T., and B. Hamil. 2003. Gender disp arity in science education: the causes, consequences, and solutions. Education 125(2) 282-296. Waliczek, T.M. P.Logan, and J.M. Zajicek. 2003. Exploring the impact of outdoor environmental activities on children using a qua litative text data analysis system. HortTechnology 13:684-688. Young children immersed in media, says recent study. (Brief article). 2004. Reading Today 21(4). 14.

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69 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Laura Sanagorski was born on December 2, 1980, as the middle child of three girls. She came to Florida from South-Central Pennsylva nia in 2000. Her study of marine biology brought her to Florida, but a new-found love of tropical and sub-tropical trees persuaded her to make it her home. She graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Science de gree in environmental horticulture from the University of Florida Tropical Research and Education Center in Homestead. She is currently the City Landscaper for the City of Deerfield Beach, Florida. Professional affiliations include the executive committee of the Florida Urban Forestry Council, International Society of Arboriculture, Society of M unicipal Arborists, Society of American Foresters, and Professionals Educatin g and Advocating for Respect in Relationahips (PEARR). She is an International Society of Arboriculture Certified Arborist. Sanagorskis career goals and passions include increasing and improving our urban forests, and to improve the health, soundness, and aesthetics of our environments and living spaces specifically through proper arbori cultural and horticultural pract ices, and through the education of others.


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Physical Description: Mixed Material
Copyright Date: 2008

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Table of Contents
    Title Page
        Page 1
        Page 2
    Dedication
        Page 3
    Acknowledgement
        Page 4
        Page 5
    Table of Contents
        Page 6
        Page 7
    List of Figures
        Page 8
    List of Tables
        Page 9
    Abstract
        Page 10
        Page 11
    Introduction
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
    Literature review
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
    Materials and methods
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
        Page 29
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
        Page 34
        Page 35
    Results
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 39
        Page 40
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
    Discussion
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 55
        Page 56
    Appendix A: Pre-test
        Page 57
        Page 58
        Page 59
    Appendix B: Post-test
        Page 60
        Page 61
        Page 62
    Appendix C: Example contingency table
        Page 63
        Page 64
    References
        Page 65
        Page 66
        Page 67
        Page 68
    Biographical sketch
        Page 69
Full Text





COMPARISON OF TWO METHODS UTILIZED TO TEACH SIXTH GRADE STUDENTS
RECOGNITION OF STRUCTURAL DEFECTS IN TREES




















By

LAURA ANNE SANAGORSKI


A THESIS PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL
OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT
OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF
MASTER OF SCIENCE

UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA

2006
































Copyright 2006

by

Laura A. Sanagorski
































I dedicate this work to my mother, Linda Sanagorski, (1947- 2006).









ACKNOWLEDGMENTS


I would like to thank the members of my committee for their boundless support and

suggestions. First and foremost, a special thank you should be extended to George Fitzpatrick.

This work would not be possible without his unlimited support and guidance. I would like to

thank him for keeping me on track and for reviewing all steps of my work with his skilled

proficiency. I also thank Kimberly Moore, William H. Kern, and Eva Worden, for giving me

the opportunity to carry out this study, and for their commitment and support as members of my

graduate committee.

George Fitzpatrick, Kimberly Moore, and Eva Worden should also be recognized as

previous professors who have contributed to cultivating my passion for arboriculture,

horticulture, and education.

I would like to thank Wendy Meyer, for her guidance and support through both the

undergraduate and graduate stages of my academic career.

I would like to thank the principals and teachers who allowed me to conduct my research

in their schools. This work would not have been possible without their cooperation. Thank you

to Nikki Simaglou, Thomas Zielinski, Dr. Kris J. Black, David Olafson, Elsa Labonski,

Aaronette Gresham.

I would like to thank the University of Florida Institutional Review Board for reviewing

and approving my research protocol.

I would like to thank Tim Womack for his inspiration and dedication to educating today's

children about trees, while our paths crossed briefly, as we sought similar goals.

Finally, I would like to thank those who have supported and believed in me through my

non-traditional educational experience. Thanks to Becky, Emily, and Dad for their love and









support across many miles. Thank you to Lisa, and Jimbo for their encouragement from afar.

Thank you to Keith and Diana for sharing experience and knowledge with me, and for their

encouragement through this process.

I would like to extend special gratitude to Scott, for being my best friend, for the constant

support through this whole experience, and for believing in me. I cannot imagine this past year

without you. Thank you for all of the ways you make things possible. I love you very much!









TABLE OF CONTENTS

A C K N O W L ED G M EN T S ................................................ .................................................4........

T A B L E O F F IG U R E S ..................................................................................................................... 8

L IST O F T A B L E S ......................................................................................................... ........ .. 9

CHAPTER

1 INTRODUCTION .................................... .. ........... ..................................... 12

Trees, C children, and E education .. .................................................................... ............... 12
T rees in an U rban F forest .................... ... .................. ............ ................. ..... .... .... ........... 12
Structural D effects in Trees ........ .. ........................................... .. ............... 13
Im portance of Structural D effect Recognition.................................................... ............... 13
Incorporation In To E education ...................................................................... ............... 14

2 L ITE R A TU R E R E V IE W .............. ..................................................................... 15

B benefits of T rees for C children .. ...................................................................... ............... 15
Youth Arboricultural Education ................ .......... ............... 15
Importance of Incorporating Arboricultural Subjects....................................................... 16
State of C current C urriculum ................................................. ............................................ 16
T rees in the L landscape .............. .............................................................................. 16
B benefits of Trees for C children ............................................ ...... ............... 17
Importance of Comparing Methods of Instruction........................................................... 17
Factors for Success in Incorporating New Subjects into Curriculum............................... 18
Historically, Active Learning Outperforms Lecture and Passive Learning ........................ 18
Students' Learning Styles M ay be Changing .................................................... ................ 18
C concerns over Standardized Testing ....................................... ....................... ................ 19

3 M A TERIAL S AN D M ETH OD S .......................................... ......................... ................ 20

4 R E SU L T S ............................................................................................................. ........ .. 3 6

Recognition of Structural Defects Pre-Test and Post-Test................................................36
Recognition of Structural Defects Pre-Test and Post-Test as a Function of School .............36
Recognition of Structural Defects Pre-Test and Post-Test as a Function of Gender ........... 36
Recognition of Structural Defects in Trees as a Function of Method of Instruction ...........36
Performance in General Arboricultural Knowledge Questions.........................................37
Performance in General Arboricultural Knowledge Questions as a Function of Gender ......37
Performance in General Arboricultural Knowledge Questions as a Function School ...........37

5 D ISC U S SIO N ........................................................................................................ ....... .. 49

G general Observations.......................................................... .... .................... 49
Recognition of Structural Defects Pre-Test and Post-Test as a Function of FCAT Grade ....50









Recognition of Structural Defects Pre-Test and Post-Test as a Function of Gender ........... 51
Recognition of Structural Defects in Trees as a Function of Method of Instruction ........... 51
Performance in General Arboricultural Knowledge Questions.........................................52
Performance in General Arboricultural Knowledge Questions as a Function of Gender ......52
Performance in General Arboricultural Knowledge Questions as a Function of School .......53
R ecom m endations .......... .............. ...................................... ...... ............... 53
Incorporating Arboriculture and Horticulture Into the Curriculum...................................55
Effectiveness of Measuring Knowledge through FCAT Exams ......................................55
Effective M ethods of Instructing Y outh............................................................ ................ 55

P R E -T E S T ............................................................................................................ .................... 5 7

P O S T -T E S T .......................................................................................................... .................... 6 0

EXAM PLE CON TIN GEN CY TABLE ......................................... ........................ ................ 63

L IST O F R EFE R E N C E S ............................................................................................. 65

BIO GRAPH ICAL SK ETCH ........................................................... 69










LIST OF FIGURES


Figure page

3-1. Five mahogany trees (Swietenia mahagoni) used in this study.. Photograph taken
A p ril, 2 0 0 6 ..................................................................................................... ....... .. 2 5

3-2. Mahogany tree (Swietenia mahagoni) used in this study to demonstrate
circling/girdling roots. Photograph taken April, 2006 ................................. ................ 26

3-3 Mahogany tree (Swietenia mahagoni) used in this study to demonstrate
leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk. Photograph taken April, 2006..............................27

3-4. Mahogany tree (Swietenia mahagoni) used in this study to demonstrate attachments of
equal sizes, codominant trunks and included bark. Photograph taken April, 2006 .........28

3-5. Mahogany tree (Swietenia mahagoni) used in this study to demonstrate a tree with no
apparent defects. Photograph taken April, 2006.......................................... ................ 29

3-6. Photographs of circling roots used in the traditional lecture portion of this study.
Photograph taken February, 2006 ...................................... ....................... ................ 30

3-7. Photos of circling roots on school grounds used in the experiential-style instruction
portion of this study. Photograph taken in M ay, 2006................................. ................ 31

3-8. Photos of codominant trunk used in the traditional lecture portion of this study.
Photograph taken February, 2006 ...................................... ....................... ................ 32

3-9. Photos of codominant trunk on school grounds used in the experiential-style instruction
portion of this study. Photograph taken M ay, 2006..................................... ................ 33

3-10. Photographs of desirable root system used in the traditional lecture portion of this
study. Photographs taken February, 2006 ................................................... ................ 34

3-11. Photographs of broken, leaning, damaged trunks used in the traditional lecture portion
of this study. Photographs taken February, 2006......................................... ................ 35









LIST OF TABLES


Table page


4-1. Summary scores of all sixth grade students (n= 180), for pre-test and post-test on
recognition of observable defects in mahogany trees (Swietenia mahagoni). Chi-
square critical value at the P= 0.05 level is 11.07; significant differences at the P=
0.05 level are indicated by ..................... ...... ............................ .................38

4-2. Summary scores of all sixth grade students (n= 180), by school A vs. B vs. C, for post-
test recognition of observable defects in mahogany trees (Swietenia mahagoni). Chi-
square critical value at the P= 0.05 is 18.31; significant differences at the P= 0.05
level is indicated by *. ............................................................. 39

4-3. Summary scores of all sixth grade students (n= 180), by gender, for pre-test recognition
of observable defects in mahogany trees (Swietenia mahagoni). Chi-square critical
value at the P= 0.05 level is 11.07; significant differences at the P= 0.05 level are
in d ic a te d b y ..................................................................................................................... 4 0

4-4. Summary scores of all sixth grade students (n= 180), by gender, for post-test
recognition of observable defects in mahogany trees (Swietenia mahagoni). Chi-
square critical value at the P= 0.05 level is 11.07; significant differences at the P=
0.05 level are indicated by *. ...................................................... ..................... 40

4-5. Summary scores of all sixth grade students (n= 180), by instructional method,
traditional, photographic vs. experiential, hands-on, for pre-test and post-test
recognition of observable defects in mahogany trees (Swietenia mahagoni). Chi-
square critical value at the P= 0.05 level is 18.31; significant differences at the P=
0.05 level are indicated by *. .............. .............................. ...............41

4-6. Summary scores of all sixth grade students (n= 180), by school A vs. B vs. C, for pre-
test recognition of observable defects in mahogany trees (Swietenia mahagoni). Chi-
square critical value at the P= 0.05 level is 18.31; significant differences at the P=
0.05 level are indicated by *. ...................................................... ..................... 42

4-7. Summary of all sixth grade students' (n= 180) performance on general arboricultural
know ledge questions ............ .. .................... .................. ......................... .. ............... 43

4-8. Summary all sixth grade students' (n= 180) performance on general arboricultural
knowledge questions, males vs. females vs. all students.............................. ................ 45

4-9. Summary all sixth grade students' (n= 180) performance on general arboricultural
knowledge questions, school A vs. B vs. C vs. all students ......................... ................ 47









Abstract of Thesis Presented to the Graduate School
of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science

COMPARISON OF TWO METHODS UTILIZED TO TEACH SIXTH GRADE CHILDREN
RECOGNITION OF STRUCTURAL DEFECTS IN TREES

By

Laura Sanagorski

December 2006

Chair: George E. Fitzpatrick
Committee Members: Kimberly Moore, Eva Worden, William H. Kern, Jr.
Major Department: Environmental Horticulture

Sixth grade students are capable of recognizing and comprehending the implications of

structural defects in trees. Structural defects in trees were introduced to sixth grade students at

three schools: Seminole Middle School in Plantation, Nova Middle School in Davie, Plantation

Middle School in Plantation, all located in the Broward County, Florida school district. The

schools represented Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT) school grades of A, B, and

C, respectively. These grades are assigned based on students' collective test scores at each

school, and are used as a measure of how successful the school is at teaching statewide academic

standards.

Two methods of instruction: hands-on, experiential instruction versus a passive, lecture-

style instruction, were compared in teaching recognition of structural defects in trees. Through

the use of a pre-test and a post-test, it was determined that students exposed to both methods of

instruction were more successful in recognizing defects after instruction than they were before

instruction. Moreover, it was determined that students exposed to defects in trees via lecture-

style classroom instruction performed better in the post test than students exposed to the same

material via a more hands-on approach. On both tests, students were asked to complete several









arboricultural general knowledge questions. The arboricultural general knowledge questions

demonstrated that a significant arboricultural knowledge base exists within the sixth grade

classes who participated in this study.









CHAPTER 1
INTRODUCTION

Trees, Children, and Education

Trees have been proven to be beneficial for children socially, physically, and emotionally.

Learning about plants and trees is beneficial as well. With limited curriculum currently available

on arboriculture and horticulture, education about plants and trees is extremely important, with

tree structure being an item of particular significance.

Today's adults were exposed to the outdoors much more than today's children are. There

is an unprecedented level of electronic media exposure today, of which the results are not yet

known.



Trees in an Urban Forest

The urban forest encompasses the trees and plants within a city environment. An urban

forest can be seen as an ecosystem with the rather unusual components such as pavement,

homes, vehicles, commercial properties, and airports (Treepeople and Lipkis 1990). Care of

urban trees is extremely different from the care of trees in a forest. Trees in an urban setting are

confined to an "artificial habitat" that fails to provide an adequate amount of the light, clean

water, unlimited healthy soil, and clean air that a tree requires (Treepeople and Lipkis 1990).

For this reason, urban trees require special care, both for their well-being and for the protection

of the property and individuals that share their environment. Principles of managing the urban

forest must include the social aspect of spaces shared by both people and trees. The management

of such trees is much more intensive than the management of trees in a typical, natural forest.

Trees are dynamic, living systems. They do not heal, regenerate, or restore injured parts. They









compartmentalize, or grow special wound-wood to stop the spread of decay (Shigo, 1989). This

is one of their survival mechanisms, because trees are unable to move from detrimental forces.

One specific example of the intensive management required in an urban setting is the

recognition and analysis of hazard trees. There are specific requirements for a tree to be deemed

as a hazard tree. A hazard tree must have structural defects which create the potential to fail, be

located in an environment favorable to failure, and be located in close proximity to a target that

would be subjected to the impacts of a failure. The parts of the tree likely to fail must also be of

a substantial size. For example, a tree with extremely large, codominant leaders and included

bark located in the woods is not a hazard tree, even if it is likely to fail. This same tree located

on a busy street over a park bench during hurricane season would be a hazard tree.

Structural Defects in Trees

Common structural defects of landscape trees include circling/girdling roots, a

leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk, included bark, codominant trunks, and attachments of equal

sizes. Trees without structural defects are highly desirable in an urban landscape, because they

have reduced risks of failure.

Hazard trees, as previously mentioned, have one or more of these structural defects.

Hazard trees can cause injury to persons and damage to property. Hazard trees have shorter

lifespans than trees with good structure, and are more costly to maintain.

Importance of Structural Defect Recognition

Hazard trees can be recognized when they are at a young age so that planting them can

be avoided or proactive measures to correct the defects can be taken. People who handle trees,

such as growers, landscapers, landscape maintenance crews, property management, and

homeowners, should be able to recognize significant defects at each stage of trees' lives.

Recognition of defects in trees relies on the education of those who handle them (Shigo, 2000).









Often, property owners may pay the price for the lack of knowledge regarding the presence of

structural defects in trees.

Trees without structural defects are considered higher quality and may demand a higher

price in the market. However, many buyers and sellers are unable to recognize the difference in

tree quality due to lack of education, a real disadvantage. People need to be able to recognize

structural defects in trees so that better quality trees can be planted in our landscapes and better

quality urban forests produced.

Incorporation In To Education

There is a deficiency of horticultural and arboricultural subjects for students. However,

recent additions to curriculum have been well-received by both instructors and students (Meyer

et al., 2001). Professionals are encouraging research into what and how arboricultural and

horticultural topics can be incorporated (Smith and Motsenbocker 2005). As an added benefits,

it is known that these topics can facilitate the instruction of other subjects (Nyenhuis, 1994, and

Dirks and Orvis, 2005).

While typical middle school instruction in Florida Public Schools is conducted toward

preparation for the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test teachers are free to teach as they

please (Anon., 2005). Structural defect recognition is one subject that can be incorporated into

the schools. This study was conducted to find out if 6th grade is an appropriate time to present

structural defects in trees as part of the curriculum. Two teaching methods were compared to

find out whether traditional lecture-style classroom instruction or a more hands-on, experiential

approach would be more effective.

Previous studies have shown that active, hands-on learning may be the most effective

method of teaching students (Hancox, 2005, and Morgan, 1993).









CHAPTER 2
LITERATURE REVIEW

Benefits of Trees for Children

Trees provide aesthetic and environmental benefits, and also provide numerous societal

ones. Arboriculture and horticulture have been stated as a foundation for healthy social ecology

(Kuo, 2003) and cause improved life skills in children (Robinson and Zajicek, 2005). Children

also really like to be around trees. They are more likely to congregate in heavily-canopied areas

as opposed to less green spaces (Coley et al., 1997). Activities, such as creative play, tend to

occur in green spaces (Faber Taylor et al., 1998). Children who have horticultural topics

incorporated into their education perform better in their science classes than those that do not

(Smith and Motsenbocker, 2005; Klemmer et al., 2005; Poston et al., 2005).

According to Louv, children absolutely need nature for development and learning. He

states that this is apparent by the [negative] result of a lack in exposure and by the "magic" that

occurs when children experience the outdoors (Louv, 2005).

Youth Arboricultural Education

Youth horticultural education is important and beneficial (Phibbs and Relf, 2005;

DeMarco et. al., 1999) Nature-related subjects incorporated into current subject topics increase

children' sense of place, teach them about their local trees and plants, and increase knowledge

about local ecology (Spitz, 2002). Even young students can learn about trees. Second graders in

New Hampshire collect data about tree diameter both at home and in forests surrounding their

schools. This data has been used to help determine the age of New Hampshire's forests

(Lonergan, 1997).









Importance of Incorporating Arboricultural Subjects

There is a general need for improved arboricultural and horticultural education for

children and adults. Education in urban forestry and arboriculture is extremely important

(Elmendorf, 2005). Within this broad subject area, tree structure has been stated as one of the

top five most important educational topics in urban forestry and arboricultural education

(Elmendorf, 2005). If the general public were more knowledgeable about these and other

arboricultural issues, urban forests would be more healthy, more structurally sound, and safer

overall. Defects in tree structure could be introduced to elementary students to give them a

general understanding of these concepts. It is highly important to introduce children to these

topics when they are young in order to produce educated adults (Loucks-Horsely et al., 1990;

Lohr and Mims, 2005).

State of Current Curriculum

There has been limited curriculum development for the purpose of teaching horticulture

to elementary students. However, some recent programs and curriculum have been developed

and have been well-received by students and teachers (Meyer et al., 2001). Youth horticultural

education needs to be improved and new topics introduced. More research about incorporating

arboriculture and horticulture into classrooms should be conducted (Smith and Motsenbocker,

2005). As an added benefit, the introduction of arboriculture into elementary curriculum can

facilitate the instruction of math and history, as well as many other subjects in the classroom

(Nyenhuis, 1994, Dirks and Orvis, 2005).

Trees in the Landscape

Trees may have life expectancies of many years, and their quality will greatly affect their

life in the landscape. In addition, higher quality trees establish more quickly and require less

maintenance after planting (Anon., 1998). Trees planted with structural defects can become









increasingly hazardous as they mature (Anon., 1998). Tree failures are a safety issue in the

landscape, but are predictable to the trained eye (Hayes, 2002). Trees in Florida are often graded

for quality using the Florida Grades and Standards. Grades are assigned based on the

characteristics of a tree's crown, trunk, branches, root system, and leaves. The presence of

structural defects reduce a tree's grade (Anon., 1998).

Benefits of Trees for Children

Structural defects in canopy trees include absence of a straight single leader, co-dominant

trunks, circling/girdling roots, narrow angles of attachment, and included bark (Hayes, 2002;

Anon., 1998, Edberg and Berry, 1999; Kane et al., 2005; Anon. 1998 (b); Anon. 1993; Smith and

Shortle, 2005). The absence or presence of structural defects in trees is the basis of the Florida

Grades and Standards. These standards are frequently referred to in urban forestry applications,

but are rarely explained to the layperson. Unless entering a related line of work, many people

are never exposed to these concepts until either faced with code violations or minimum

landscaping standards required by their municipality. This topic could be introduced to the

standard elementary curriculum.

Importance of Comparing Methods of Instruction

While various methods of teaching may provide desired results (Saville, 2006), different

methods of instruction should be studied for effectiveness, so that the best method can be utilized

for specific situations (Anderson and Walker, 2003; Poston et al., 2005). In one study, plant

propagation principles were taught to students using instructional video and face-to-face

demonstration. Students who learned from the demonstration reported better clarity, while

students who saw the video performed better on a quiz (Gomez, 2004). Behavioral methods of

classroom instruction as opposed to a lecture format have been available and supported since the

1950s (Saville, 2006). Interactive instruction in horticultural topics is believed to produce better









results than a formal "textbook" approach (Felmley, 1902). Interactive learning is generally

perceived to be more successful than traditional classroom learning (Saville, 2006).

Factors for Success in Incorporating New Subjects into Curriculum

Communication is critical when adding horticultural topics to school programs. Lack of

communication has historically been a considerable obstacle in incorporating arboricultural and

horticultural subjects to a curriculum (Phibbs and Relf, 2005). Success in incorporating

horticulture into the classroom is most realistic when teachers and administration staff are both

highly involved (Klemmer et al., 2005).

Historically, Active Learning Outperforms Lecture and Passive Learning

Previous studies have shown that more active learning is highly beneficial in comparison

to "passive learning", such as playing versus watching others play (Bricklin, 1990). The more

passive time, such as watching TV, a child or adolescent spent the more likely they were to have

poor educational achievement (Hancox, 2005, and Morgan, 1993.). A previous study related

girls' exposure to greenery to increased test performance and concentration (Faber Taylor et al.,

2002).

Students' Learning Styles May be Changing

Exposure to television and other media has been compared to an "impending disaster" of

which the final results are not yet known (Shifrin, 2006); specific interactions between media

exposure and performance in school have not yet been determined (Borzekowski, 2005). This

"disaster" is the unknown result of today's youths' extreme immersion in television and other

media. Children are stated to be exposed to nature today only through "electronic detachment"

(Louv., 2005). The effects will not be known until a multitude of studies are conducted on youth

now, as they progress through social, emotional, and physical maturation, and as the adults they

become. Today's children are surrounded by more media, such as television and video games,









than ever before (Reading, 2004). Preliminary, incomprehensive consequences to this exposure

are beginning to surface. It has been shown that young adults who were exposed to the frequent

visual stimulation of such media as children are more receptive to graphic novels with limited

text than to standard text-only books (Bucher, 2004). This could certainly indicate that instead

of media impeding students' ability to learn, it could be affecting the style in which they learn.

Educators have been encouraged to include graphic novels, a growing genre, in middle and

secondary classrooms (Bucher, 2004). Instead of media reducing academic achievement, it

might change learning styles. This is a contrast to the generally- accepted perception that

television decreases students ability to perform. More research is required to answer this

question. If learning styles are being affected by media use among children, education will need

to change drastically to reflect changed learning styles, or overall media use would need to be

reduced so that instructional styles would not have to adapt.

Concerns over Standardized Testing

Education in schools across the nation is based on standardized testing. Standardized

testing for schools specifically in Florida are based on the Sunshine State Standards, which are

described as "appropriate things for students to know and be able to master" (Anon., 2005).

Since 1988, the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT) has been the method used to

measure and determine the success of schools throughout the state of Florida in meeting these

standards. Approximately $42 million is spent annually by the State of Florida to develop,

administer, and score the FCAT (Anon., 2005). Many have expressed concern that these tests

may not be accurately measuring success in Florida schools (Anon., 2005).

Time allocated for recess and physical education has dramatically been decreased, and that

is in the schools that still provide any type of this important activity. Time outdoors, including

gym class, has been lost, slated as a waste, to time set aside for test preparation (Louv 2005).









CHAPTER 3
MATERIALS AND METHODS

To determine the ability of sixth grade students to comprehend and recognize structural

defects in trees, one-hundred-eighty sixth grade students from Seminole Middle School in

Plantation, Nova Middle School in Davie, Plantation Middle School in Plantation, in the

Broward County, Florida school district, were studied. Class size ranged from 20 to 25. Either

three or four classes were utilized from each school. The schools represented Florida

Comprehensive Assessment (FCAT) school grades of A, B, and C (Anon. 2006). The FCAT

exam is given to students in grades 1-12, to test their knowledge of the Sunshine State Standards,

or statewide-accepted "appropriate things for students to know and be able to master" (Florida,

2005). The grades of A, B, and C, are assigned to schools based on their overall performance,

with the grade of A being the most desirable. A school graded 'A' based on its FCAT scores is

considered to be highly successful in teaching its students the Sunshine State Standards. Schools

graded 'B', 'C', 'D', and 'E', are each considered less successful than the grades above them.

Five container grown mahogany (Swietenia mahagoni) trees (Figure 2-1) were used in

this study to demonstrate the most common defects in trees. One species was used to eliminate

confusion, which could have been caused by students perceiving a specie's unique traits as a

structural defect. Using only one species allowed for less interference from multiple factors.

The trees were potted in 3 gallon containers and clearly labeled to correspond with pre-test and

post-test questions. The defects represented were: circling/girdling roots (Figure 3-2),

leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk (Figure 3-3), co-dominant trunks and included bark (Figure

3-4). A tree with no apparent defects was also included as an experimental control (Figure 3-5).

Trees on school grounds were used for the experiential, outdoor-instructed classes. Prior

to this study, the school grounds at each school were inspected and representative trees with each









of the structural defects were chosen for the hands-on, experiential instruction (Figures 3-7, 3-9).

There was one tree representative of a tree with no apparent defects.

Preparations for the passive, lecture and photographic type of classroom instruction

included photographing the structural defects and printing the photographs on 1112" 17" paper

(Figures 3-6, 3-8). The photos were laminated for durability.

The classroom instruction was presented as an enrichment activity to each of the classes.

Each class was presented with the 5 trees (Figures 3-1, 3-2, 3-3, 3-4, 3-5). The pre-test

(Appendix A) was administered to all classes prior to instruction. The pre-test was in two parts;

one part consisted of basic arboricultural knowledge and the second part measured the students'

ability to recognize structural defects. Students were given instructions to "take their best guess"

if they did not understand the question. Students worked individually and were given 10 minutes

to complete the pre-test (Klemmer et al., 2005).

All pre-tests were collected prior to the next step in the study. This was to ensure that no

one had the advantage of recording the answers for the post-test. Following the pre-test, each

class received their respective instruction: hands-on, experiential outdoor instruction or

photographic, classroom-style instruction.

The classes designated to learn outdoors on their school grounds were given a very brief

explanation of the defects they would be looking for. The proper growth structure, such a a

straight, single trunk, was explained as the preferred structure to the defect, such as a codominant

trunk that looks like a "Y". Students were guided in a walk around their school campus and told

to look for the specific defects. Members of each class were able to view at least one example of

each defect in their school landscape (Figures 3-7, 3-9). Students were asked to look for the

defects as they were led on a walk around their campus. While no defects were pointed out by









the instructor, the instructor would ask the students to identify a defect in a particular tree if no

one recognized it.

Classes designated for indoor instruction were shown all of the prepared photographs in a

lecture-style presentation. The preferred structure, such as roots that grow away from the trunk,

was either explained or shown in a photograph (Figure 3-10), and then compared to the defect,

such as circling roots, in another photograph (Figure 3-6). Each photograph was walked around

the classroom so that each student could get a close-up view of the particular defect.

After classes received their respective instruction, a Post-test (Appendix B) was

administered. As in the pre-test, classes were instructed to answer a different set of questions

regarding basic arboricultural knowledge in the one part and to record the defects they

recognized in each tree in another part.

The data obtained from 180 pre-tests and 180 post-tests were subjected chi-square

analysis. The main potential effects [method of instruction, FCAT school grade, gender] were

analyzed to determine their effect on students' performance in both general knowledge questions

and recognition of structural defects in trees.

Chi square analysis is used to compare data which falls into definitive categories. In a

random, non-biased sample, it is expected that data will fall into categories with equal

probability. The expected equal probability is known as the null hypothesis. Chi square analysis

allows for a statistical analysis to explain deviations to the null hypothesis; deviations may be

indicative of a reaction of a particular factor or it can be due to randomness. Chi square analysis

can answer this.

Contingency tables (Appendix C) were set up to analyze data using the chi-square

analysis. First, a count of responses, or observed values, was compiled. The observed values









were converted into percentages. Next, the expected values were calculated. Each column and

row of the observed values was summed, and a final value was calculated as the sum of all

columns and rows. The expected value was calculated by taking the product of each position's

corresponding row sum and column sum, and dividing this by the sum of sums. The chi-square

value for each position was calculated by taking the square of the difference between each

observed and expected value divided by the expected value. The sum of the chi-square values

within each contingency table was compared to a critical value from the chi-square table. If the

chi square value was larger than the critical value, it was stated that the groups being compared

were statistically different, or the null hypothesis was rejected. If the chi-square value was

smaller, the null hypothesis was accepted; the samples were not stated to be statistically

different.

Data collected from general knowledge question portions of both the pre-test and post-

test were compiled to represent the knowledge base of the overall population. Data collected

from general knowledge questions were also analyzed to compare responses based on gender and

also to compare responses based on the FCAT grade assigned to each school. General

arboricultural knowledge was not a part of the instruction. However, the data collected was

analyzed between schools, gender, and instructional method.

Data collected in the structural defect recognition portion of the pre-test was compiled to

determine the starting knowledge base for all students. This data was subjected to chi-square

analysis to determine if students were equally able to recognize defects before instruction.

Gender and FCAT grade assigned to each school was analyzed to determine if any group was

more able to recognize structural defects prior to instruction.









Data collected in the structural defect recognition portion of the post-test was compiled to

represent all students' performance after instruction. This data was compared to the pre-test

structural recognition data for all students to determine if the instruction as a whole was

successful. The data was partitioned into subsets of the whole population: all females, all males,

all of school 'A', all of school 'B', all of school 'C', all students exposed to the outdoor,

experiential instruction, and all students exposed to the lecture-style presentation.









Figure 3-1. Five mahogany trees (Swietenia mahagoni) used in this study.. Photograph taken
April, 2006.









Figure 3-2. Mahogany tree (Swietenia mahagoni) used in this study to demonstrate
circling/girdling roots. Photograph taken April, 2006.









Figure 3-3 Mahogany tree (Swietenia mahagoni) used in this study to demonstrate
leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk. Photograph taken April, 2006.









Figure 3-4. Mahogany tree (Swietenia mahagoni) used in this study to demonstrate attachments
of equal sizes, codominant trunks and included bark. Photograph taken April, 2006.










Figure 3-5. Mahogany tree (Swietenia mahagoni) used in this study to demonstrate a tree with
no apparent defects. Photograph taken April, 2006.


4









Figure 3-6. Photographs of circling roots used in the traditional lecture portion of this study.
Photograph taken February, 2006.









Figure 3-7. Photos of circling roots on school grounds used in the experiential-style instruction
portion of this study. Photograph taken in May, 2006.









Figure 3-8. Photos of codominant trunk used in the traditional lecture portion of this study.
Photograph taken February, 2006.









Figure 3-9. Photos of codominant trunk on school grounds used in the experiential-style
instruction portion of this study. Photograph taken May, 2006.









Figure 3-10. Photographs of desirable root system used in the traditional lecture portion of this
study. Photographs taken February, 2006.

































b. & .












Figure 3-11. Photographs of broken, leaning, damaged trunks used in the traditional lecture
portion of this study. Photographs taken February, 2006.




































a. ,






















b .\.









CHAPTER 4
RESULTS

Recognition of Structural Defects Pre-Test and Post-Test

There was a significant improvement in ability to identify to identify structural defects in

the sample trees between the pre-test and post-test for the population as a whole (Table 4-1).

Regardless of a school's FCAT grade, gender, or method of instruction, all groups improved in

structural defect recognition (Tables 4-2, 4-3, 4-4, 4-5).

Recognition of Structural Defects Pre-Test and Post-Test as a Function of School

For trees, #1-5, there was a significant difference in school performances pre-test (Table

4-6), however this difference did not correspond to the schools' FCAT grades. A higher school

score on the FCAT exam did not correlate to a higher score on the pre-test or on the post-test.

Recognition of Structural Defects Pre-Test and Post-Test as a Function of Gender


For all trees, #1-5, there was no significant difference between all males and females,

both pre-test and post-test (Tables 4-3, 4-5). This indicates that both males and females

performed equally both pre- test and made significant and equal progress in recognizing

structural defects in trees. Neither males nor females performed better than the other.

Recognition of Structural Defects in Trees as a Function of Method of Instruction


For all trees, #1-5, there was a significant difference between performances based on

methods of instruction (Table 4-6). Data indicate that students learned, but students taught in the

indoor classroom performed better after instruction than did those who learned in the outdoor

setting (Table 4-6). There is a significant difference between performances based on methods of

instruction.









Performance in General Arboricultural Knowledge Questions


For all general knowledge questions in the pre-test, numbered 1-6, students recognized the

correct response on average 67% of the time (Table 4-7). Rate of success ranged from 23.89%

to 89.44% (Table 4-7).

60.00% of students are able to recognize that not all trees lose their leaves in the fall.

80.56% of students were able to recognize that trees planted in cities require more care. A

majority of students, 83.33%, 75.00%, and 51.11%, respectively, were able to recognize the

correct responses that when people care for trees properly, the trees might live longer, will be

healthier, and will be safer. 70.56% of students were able to recognize that pruning can be

beneficial but must be done properly. Only 23.89% of students were able to recognize that a

Sequoia tree grew the biggest out of the four trees provided. (Table 4-7)

Performance in General Arboricultural Knowledge Questions as a Function of Gender


For all general knowledge questions in the pre-test, the null hypothesis, there was no

significant difference in general arboricultural knowledge between males and females, is

accepted (Table 4-8).

Performance in General Arboricultural Knowledge Questions as a Function School


Data collected for all general knowledge questions indicate that there is no difference in

general arboricultural knowledge between the three schools. 2 out of 11 are significantly

different in comparing schools graded A, B, and C to the total population (Table 4-9).











Table 4-1. Summary scores of all sixth grade students (n= 180), for pre-test and post-test on
recognition of observable defects in mahogany trees (Swietenia mahagoni). Chi-
square critical value at the P= 0.05 level is 11.07; significant differences at the P=
0.05 level are indicated by *.


Tree Defect on % All % All Chi-Square
Number the tree Students Students
Identifying Identifying
the Defect the Defect
Correctly Correctly
Pre-Test Post-Test
1 No defect 40.00 52.78 6.74
2 Trunk 82.78 88.89 7.88
3 Trunk 77.78 76.67 33.37*
3 Included 27.78 25.00 33.37*
Bark
3 Codominant 21.11 57.22 33.37*
4 Trunk 53.89 52.78 31.23*
4 Codominant 31.11 81.67 31.23*
4 Attachments 30.00 37.22 31.23*
of Equal
Sizes
5 Circling 46.11 78.33 23.80*
Roots










Table 4-2. Summary scores of all sixth grade students (n= 180), by school A vs. B vs. C, for
post-test recognition of observable defects in mahogany trees (Swietenia mahagoni).
Chi-square critical value at the P= 0.05 is 18.31; significant differences at the P= 0.05
level is indicated by *

Tree Defect % All % School % School % School Chi-Square
Students A B C
Identifying Identifying Identifying Identifying
Correctly Correctly Correctly Correctly
Pre-Test Post-Test Post-Test Post-Test
1 No defect 40.00 59.09 34.41 53.49 33.59*
2 Trunk 82.78 88.64 40.86 88.37 44.30*
3 Trunk 77.78 70.45 40.86 83.72 72.03*
3 Included 27.78 20.45 21.51 30.23 72.03*
Bark
3 Codominant 21.11 50.00 15.05 65.12 72.03*
4 Trunk 53.89 31.82 40.86 72.09 92.39*
4 Codominant 31.11 75.00 15.05 72.09 92.39*
4 Attachments 30.00 25.00 13.98 39.53 92.39*
of Equal
Sizes
5 Circling 46.11 68.18 24.73 79.07 50.95*
Roots









Table 4-3. Summary scores of all sixth grade students (n= 180), by gender, for pre-test
recognition of observable defects in mahogany trees (Swietenia mahagoni). Chi-
square critical value at the P= 0.05 level is 11.07; significant differences at the P=
0.05 level are indicated by *

Tree Defect % Males % Females Chi-Square
Identifying Identifying
Correctly Correctly
Pre-Test Pre-Test
1 No defect 37.89 42.86 0.82
2 Trunk 83.16 83.33 6.42
3 Trunk 76.84 78.57 2.47
3 Included 24.21 30.95 2.47
Bark
3 Codominant 21.05 21.43 2.47
4 Trunk 54.74 52.38 4.07
4 Codominant 35.79 25.00 4.07
4 Attachments 26.32 34.52 4.07
of Equal
Sizes
5 Circling 41.05 52.38 3.33
Roots


Table 4-4. Summary scores of all sixth grade students (n= 180), by gender, for post-test
recognition of observable defects in mahogany trees (Swietenia mahagoni). Chi-
square critical value at the P= 0.05 level is 11.07; significant differences at the P=
0.05 level are indicated by *

Tree Defect % Males % Females Chi-Square
Identifying Identifying
Correctly Correctly
Post-Test Post-Test
1 No defect 54.74 50.00 3.47
2 Trunk 86.32 91.67 9.85
3 Trunk 70.53 83.33 9.92
3 Included 18.95 30.95 9.92
Bark
3 Codominant 64.21 48.81 9.92
4 Trunk 46.32 59.25 4.88
4 Codominant 82.11 80.95 4.88
4 Attachments 35.79 39.29 4.88
of Equal
Sizes
5 Circling 80.00 76.19 1.44
Roots













Table 4-5. Summary scores of all sixth grade students (n= 180), by instructional method,
traditional, photographic vs. experiential, hands-on, for pre-test and post-test
recognition of observable defects in mahogany trees (Swietenia mahagoni). Chi-
square critical value at the P= 0.05 level is 18.31; significant differences at the P=
0.05 level are indicated by *.


Tree Defect % All % % Chi-Square
Students Traditional Experiential
Recognizing Recognizing Recognizing
Pre-Test Post-Test Post-Test
1 No defect 32.96 10.53 30.95 44.45*
2 Trunk 83.24 100 72.62 19.76*
3 Trunk 78.21 94.74 57.14 42.84*
3 Included 27.93 28.42 21.43 42.84*
Bark
3 Codominant 21.23 56.84 58.33 42.84*
4 Trunk 54.19 67.37 36.90 58.29*
4 Codominant 31.28 95.79 66.67 58.29*
4 Attachments 30.17 43.16 30.95 58.29*
of Equal
Sizes
5 Circling 46.37 96.84 58.33 48.71*
Roots










Table 4-6. Summary scores of all sixth grade students (n= 180), by school A vs. B vs. C, for pre-
test recognition of observable defects in mahogany trees (Swietenia mahagoni). Chi-
square critical value at the P= 0.05 level is 18.31; significant differences at the P=
0.05 level are indicated by *


Tree Defect % School % School % School Chi-Square
A B C
Identifying Identifying Identifying
Correctly Correctly Correctly
Pre-Test Pre-Test Pre-Test
1 No defect 47.73 34.41 44.19 29.18
2 Trunk 75.00 40.86 81.40 25.98*
3 Trunk 77.27 40.86 79.07 26.18*
3 Included 27.27 21.51 39.53 26.18*
Bark
3 Codominant 15.91 15.05 27.91 26.18*
4 Trunk 56.82 40.86 46.51 28.88*
4 Codominant 18.18 15.05 46.51 28.88*
4 Attachments 22.73 13.98 27.91 28.88*
of Equal
Sizes
5 Circling 34.09 24.73 51.16 22.85*
Roots









Table 4-7. Summary of all sixth grade students'
knowledge questions.


(n= 180) performance on general arboricultural


Question # Correct Question Percentage of Students Recognizing
Response
What does a Pre-Test 1 la: Water 89.44%
tree need to
live?
What does a Pre-Test 1 lb: Soil 77.78%
tree need to
live?
All trees Pre-Test 2 2b: False 60.00%
lose their
leaves in the
fall.
Trees with Pre-Test 3 3a: Will live 75.00%
good longer.
structure:
Trees with Pre-Test 3 3c: Will be safer in 39.44%
good the future.
structure:
The bark on Pre-Test 4 4d: Is different 86.67%
different from tree to tree.
trees:
A plant: Pre-Test 5 5a: Is a living 77.78%
organism.
A plant: Pre-Test 4 5e: Is able to make 62.22%
its own food.
Trees: Pre-Test 6 6a: Need more care 80.56%
when they are
planted in cities.
When Post-Test 1 la: Trees might 83.33%
people care live longer.
for trees
properly:
When Post-Test 1 Ic: Trees will be 75.00%
people care healthier.
for trees
properly:
When Post-Test 1 Id: Trees will be 51.11%
people care safer.
for trees
properly:____









The seed of Post Test 2 2c: An acorn. 58.89%
an oak tree
is called:
Trees with Post Test 3 3a: Will live 80.56%
good longer.
structure:
Trees with Post Test 3 3b: Will be safer. 55.56%
good
structure:
Which tree Post Test 4 4b: Sequoia 23.89%
grows
biggest?
When Post Test 5 5c: Pruning can 70.56%
pruning a be beneficial but
tree: must be done
properly.









Table 4-8. Summary all sixth grade students' (n= 180) performance on general arboricultural
knowledge questions, males vs. females vs. all students.

Question Correct % of Males % of % of All Critical Chi-Square
Answer Answering Females Students Value
Correctly Answering Answering
Correctly Correctly
What does a Water 89.47 89.29 89.94 12.59 3.30
tree need to
live?
What does a Soil 77.89 78.57 78.21 12.59 3.30
tree need to
live?
All trees lose False 60.34 59.43 60.15 5.99 0.09
their leaves
in the fall
(True/False)
Trees with Will live 71.58 78.57 75.42 9.49 1.34
good longer.
structure:
Trees with Will be 40.00 39.29 39.66 9.49 1.34
good safer in the
structure: future.
The bark on Is different 84.21 89.29 87.15 12.6 0.14
different from tree
trees: to tree.
A plant: Is a living 76.84 79.76 78.21 18.3 4.28
organism.
A plant: Cannot 25.26 26.19 25.70 18.3 4.28
move from
one spot.
A plant: Is able to 65.26 58.33 62.57 18.3 4.28
make its
own food.
The seed of An acorn. 65.26 51.19 59.22 12.6 3.60
an Oak tree
is called:
Trees with May live 78.95 82.14 81.01 9.49 0.54
good longer.
structure:
Trees with Will be 58.95 51.19 55.87 9.49 0.54
good safer.
structure:
Which tree Sequoia. 27.37 20.24 24.02 12.6 2.36
grows
biggest?










When Pruning 77.89 61.90 70.95 9.49 4.38
pruning a can be
tree: beneficial
but must
be done
~_______properly._____________________________









Table 4-9. Summary all sixth grade students' (n= 180) performance on general arboricultural
knowledge questions, school A vs. B vs. C vs. all students.

Question Correct % of All % of % of % of Critical Chi-
Answer Students School A School B School C Value Square
Answering Answering Answering Answering
Correctly Correctly Correctly Correctly
What does a Water 89.94 84.09 93.55 86.05 16.9 16.28
tree need to
live?
What does a Soil 78.21 75.00 75.79 41.67 16.9 16.28
tree need to
live?
All trees False 60.34 52.27 68.82 48.84 7.81 6.78
lose their
leaves in
the fall
(True/False)
Trees with Will live 75.42 79.55 72.04 76.74 12.6 9.63
good longer.
structure:
Trees with Will be 39.66 27.27 47.31 34.88 12.6 9.63
good safer in
structure: the
future.
The bark on Is 87.15 84.09 91.40 79.07 16.9 17.77*
different different
trees: from tree
to tree.
A plant: Is a 78.21 70.45 86.02 67.44 25.0 2.82
living
organism.
A plant: Cannot 25.70 25.00 32.26 11.63 25.0 2.82
move
from one
spot.
A plant: Is able to 62.57 61.36 60.22 67.44 25.0 2.82
make its
own
food.
The seed of An acorn. 59.22 63.64 61.29 48.84 16.9 24.99
an Oak tree
is called:
Trees with May live 81.01 81.81 38.71 81.72 12.6 5.94
good longer.
structure:










Trees with Will be 55.87 50.00 23.66 60.22 12.6 5.94
good safer.
structure:
Which tree Sequoia. 24.02 20.45 27.96 18.60 16.9 26.70*
grows
biggest?
When Pruning 70.95 68.18 32.26 75.27 12.6 9.08
pruning a can be
tree: beneficial
but must
be done
~______properly.___________________________________









CHAPTER 5
DISCUSSION

General Observations


Students seemed to generally enjoy this instruction, as did their classroom teachers.

During the pre-test, students expressed feelings of frustration in that they were being tested on

concepts that had not previously presented to them. This may be a result of the "test-

preparation" mentality to which students are exposed. Sit seemed as if students were not very

prepared to learn about everyday, real life subjects. This could impede their acceptance and

enjoyments of studying subjects for reasons other that success on an exam.

Many of the students exposed to the outdoor, hands-on instruction in tree defects seemed

less interested in the class and highly distracted. In comparison to the traditional, indoor,

photographic-type sessions, the outdoor class sessions were more difficult to control. Many of

the students who were taken outdoors exhibited poor behavior.

It was suggested that students may not spend enough time outdoors during the school

day. The outdoor class sessions may have felt like a recess to many students. While they were

being introduced to new concepts, they seemed almost indifferent to being surrounded by their

everyday environment. In contrast, students exposed to the photographs seemed interested,

fascinated, and delighted by the images. This could imply an extremely visual inclination in 6th

grade students who participated in this study. Students may be accustomed to intense visual

exposure, so much that they need this impact in order to respond. Another possible explanation

to this phenomenon could be that the instructor may have been more skilled in the lecture-type

instruction and less effective in leading a hands-on session.

Most students reacted positively to the post-test. It was observed that students were

proud of being able to recognize the correct answers. Several students indicated a desire to be









more involved with the care and selection of trees both at home and around their school grounds.

This was considered a success, in that many students made cognitive associations what they

learned in one instruction to what went on in their outdoor environments, as opposed to

connecting it to only a correct answer on an exam. Student comments indicative of their new

interests showed that they can easily grasp these concepts and can become more caring stewards

for our urban forests.

One significant obstacle in setting up this study was to schedule time with the classes. It

was alarming that teachers were concerned that the instruction on tree structural defects was not

on the FCATs and that one class period of FCAT preparation would be lost. Most students'

frustration in that they were being tested on concepts in the pre-test that had not previously

presented to them suggests that they are being conditioned to perform well on tests. Many

students had a lot of trouble making guesses and thinking outside of test-related studies.

Students are being taught to be successful on the FCATs, as a school's overall score is

beneficial to the school. For this reason, students may not be as ready to explore subjects that are

related to success in daily life, as opposed to success on standardized exams. Students exposed

to the photographs were interested, fascinated, and delighted by the images. While the images

may have been of unfamiliar concepts, they were examples that were not outside of their ability

to comprehend. The excitement over the images was surprising and unexpected.

Recognition of Structural Defects Pre-Test and Post-Test as a Function of FCAT Grade


For all trees, #1-5, there was a significant difference between school performances pre-test.

However, this difference did not correspond with the 'A' school consistently performing better

that the other schools. Test results indicated that school C students were most successful in









recognizing the correct structural defects on most pre-test and post-test questions, with school A

students in the middle, and school B students identifying the fewest.

This study resulted in an overall increase in the ability of students to recognize structural

defects in trees following both types of instruction. The biggest contrast in expectations was that

the students who were instructed with the traditional photographic classroom method scored

higher in the post-test than those who learned in the experiential method. One explanation might

be that there were fewer distractions in the classroom. The indoor classroom is the typical

environment to which students are accustomed. Another explanation could be that today's youth

are more completely immersed in media: they watch more television and play more video games

than previous generations. Learning styles may be changing because of the intensive media

exposure. The results of this study could raise an important question: Does education need to

shift teaching methods to reflect this change in youth activities?

Recognition of Structural Defects Pre-Test and Post-Test as a Function of Gender


Success in structural defect recognition significantly increased from the pre-test to the

post-test. Defect recognition in the trees both pre-test and post-test was not affected by gender.

This shows that males and females were equally competent in both recognizing tree structural

defects presented in this study and in learning to recognize them. While there may be previous

assumptions that scientific ability is predetermined by gender (Tindall 2004, Nordvik 1998, and

Sonnert 1995), neither gender had any advantage over the other in this study, a positive sign for

today's equality-conscious society.

Recognition of Structural Defects in Trees as a Function of Method of Instruction


While all groups were successful in learning to recognize structural defects in trees, the

group that learned via the traditional classroom lecture with photographs had higher scores









following their instruction. As previously mentioned, students may currently be less exposed to

outdoor experiences and therefore could be more easily distracted outside of their classroom.

The difference between instructional methods may also be attributed to the skill or deficiency of

the instructor. An additional possible explanation may be the students' attraction to the visually-

stimulating photographs.

Performance in General Arboricultural Knowledge Questions


It is gratifying to know that most students were able to understand many basic

arboricultural knowledge principles without prior instruction. A majority of students understand

that trees need more care when planted in cities, and that proper care and tree structure result in

healthier, safer trees that will live longer. Most students recognized that a difference exists

between the right way and a wrong way to prune a tree, and that correct pruning can be

beneficial to the tree.

The existence of a good base of arboricultural knowledge is a positive indication that sixth

grade students are prepared to learn more complex principles of tree care.

Performance in General Arboricultural Knowledge Questions as a Function of Gender


For all general arboricultural knowledge questions, there was no significant differerence in

test scores between males and females, suggesting that sixth graders have equal general

arboricultural knowledge regardless of gender. As with the success in structural defect

recognition, this success could be considered to be a positive finding for our equality-conscious

society.









Performance in General Arboricultural Knowledge Questions as a Function of School


Only two responses resulted in significant difference between schools; the majority was

statistically the same. Pre-test question #4, the bark on different trees is... (different from tree to

tree), post-test question #4, which tree grows biggest?... (sequoia) were the only questions for

which results indicated significant differences between schools. More students from school B

recognized correct answers on pre-test question #4 and post-test question #4. This is in direct

contrast with pre-test and post-test tree structural defect recognition, in which school B

repeatedly recognized the correct answer less often than the other two schools. It was expected

that the school with an FCAT grade of A would be most successful on the general knowledge

questions, as FCAT schools with a grade of A are generally assumed to be more successful.

More information and study would be needed to make any claims regarding the successes or

deficiencies in the FCAT's ability to measure students' knowledge.

FCAT exams are a standard, minimally subjective measure that are currently applied on a

state-wide level. Data collected from the general knowledge questions indicates there is no

difference in general arboricultural knowledge based on FCAT grade. There is no logical pattern

such as students from School 'A' being consistently more successful in identifying the correct

answer.

Recommendations

Children may have been so distracted in the outdoor instructional sessions because it is not

a common experience for them. The findings of this study may suggest that a combination of

two items needs to occur: education needs to change to mirror the changing needs of children

exposed to high levels of electronic media, and children need to be exposed to the outdoors much

more than they currently are, so that they can appreciate and learn from an outdoor educational









experience. These two options need to be investigated more thoroughly. Future studies should

focus on current learning styles as related to the results of excessive media exposure. There are a

multitude of benefits associated with children spending time outdoors; it would be highly

beneficial for them to spend more time outside and less time immersed in media.

Students and teachers would benefit from a more unified curriculum across the board, with

more focus on real-life experience and less on standardized exam performance. The

development of stronger critical thinking skills in children should be an aspect of future

curriculum changes.

Children should run, play, and learn from the environment around them the trees, plants,

grass, and insects not the TV and video games. This study sends a clear message: children

desperately need to get outside to play and learn!









CHAPTER 6

FUTURE WORK

Incorporating Arboriculture and Horticulture Into the Curriculum


This study has shown that principles of arboriculture and horticulture can positively and

easily be incorporated into existing curriculum and that students can learn them effectively

following passive, photographic instructional format. Structural defect recognition in trees and

other critical thinking exercises could be presented to different ages and grades. Other important

arboricultural and horticultural concepts should be studied as to the feasibility of their

incorporation into the elementary and high school curriculum. Examples of some of these

concepts are: proper planting, pruning young trees for structure, care and maintenance of

maturing and mature trees, and recognizing nutritional deficiencies, common pests and diseases

in the landscape.


Effectiveness of Measuring Knowledge through FCAT Exams


More research is necessary to determine whether test-taking ability or actual knowledge

is the focus in schools in the state of Florida. The relationship between a school's FCAT

performance, their actual collective knowledge, their test-taking abilities, and their ability to

learn should be explored.


Effective Methods of Instructing Youth


The higher post-test scores among students who were taught using a passive photographic

format may raise the important question of whether education needs to shift to reflect changes in









youth exposure to media. This issue should be studied more comprehensively using varied

populations, arboricultural and horticultural subjects, and instructional methods.









APPENDIX A
PRE-TEST

Pre-test used in this study and given to all students prior to exposing them to their designated

method of instruction. Side (page) one provides space to record demographic information:

student's name, age, gender, class, and grade. This information was used to ensure pre-test and

post-test data was grouped appropriately. Side (page) one provides space to record the defects)

present in each tree. Side (page) two presents general arboricultural knowledge questions. This

pre-test was presented in-class regardless of designated instructional method and collected

immediately upon completion and prior to the instruction on structural defect recognition in

trees. For all questions on both sides one and two, students were instructed that more than one

answer might be correct and to circle as many as they believed were correct. Administered in

May, 2006.









PRE-TEST


NAME
AGE
SEX
CLASS
GRADE


Look at the trees, labeled #1 #5 and use them to answer the following. More than one answer
can be circled.

a. circling/ girdling roots
b. leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk
Tree#1 c. included bark
d. codominant trunks
e. attachments of equal sizes
f. no apparent defects
a. circling/ girdling roots
b. leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk
Tree2 included bark
d. codominant trunks
e. attachments of equal sizes
f. no apparent defects
a. circling/ girdling roots
b. leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk
Tree 3 included bark
d. codominant trunks
e. attachments of equal sizes
f. no apparent defects
a. circling/ girdling roots
b. leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk
Tree #4 included bark
d. codominant trunks
e. attachments of equal sizes
f. no apparent defects
a. circling/ girdling roots
b. leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk
Tree #5 included bark
d. codominant trunks
e. attachments of equal sizes
f. no apparent defects









PRE-TEST


More than one answer can be circled.


What does a tree need to live?
a. water
#1 .
b. soil
c. earthworms
d. grass

All trees lose their leaves in the fall
#2 a. True
b. False

Trees with good structure:
a. will live longer
#3 b. are no different than trees with bad structure
c. will be safer in the future

The bark on different trees:
a. Is exactly the same
#4 b. Is always rough
c. Is not important to the tree
d. Is different from tree to tree
A plant:
a. Is a living organism
b. Cannot move from one spot
#5 c. Is only different from an animal because it cannot talk
d. Is always grown in soil
e. Is able to make its own food
f. Always has green leaves

Trees
#6 a. need more care when they are planted in cities
b. don't need people to do anything for them









APPENDIX B
POST-TEST

Post-test used in this study and given to all students following exposure to their designated

method of instruction. Side (page) one provides space to record demographic information:

student's name, age, gender, class, and grade. This information was used to ensure pre-test and

post-test data was grouped appropriately. Side (page) one provides space to record the defects)

present in each tree. Side (page) two presents general arboricultural knowledge questions. This

post-test was presented in-class regardless of designated instructional method and was collected

immediately upon completion. For all questions on both sides one and two, students were

instructed that more than one answer might be correct and to circle as many as they believed

were correct. Students were required to work independently on the post-test. Administered in

May, 2006.









POST-TEST


NAME
AGE
SEX
CLASS
GRADE


Look at the trees, labeled #1 #5 and use them to answer the following. More than one answer
can be circled.

a. circling/ girdling roots
b. leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk
Tree#1 c. included bark
d. codominant trunks
e. attachments of equal sizes
f. no apparent defects
a. circling/ girdling roots
b. leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk
Tree2 included bark
d. codominant trunks
e. attachments of equal sizes
f. no apparent defects
a. circling/ girdling roots
b. leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk
Tree #3 included bark
d. codominant trunks
e. attachments of equal sizes
f. no apparent defects
a. circling/ girdling roots
b. leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk
Tree #4 included bark
d. codominant trunks
e. attachments of equal sizes
f. no apparent defects
a. circling/ girdling roots
b. leaning/bent/broken/damaged trunk
Tree #5 included bark
d. codominant trunks
e. attachments of equal sizes
f. no apparent defects









POST-TEST


More than one answer can be circled.


When people care for trees properly:
#1 a. trees might live longer
b. they are wasting their time
c. trees will be healthier
d. trees will be safer
The seed of an oak tree is called
a. an apple.
#2 b. a bulb
c. an acorn
d. a mushroom

Trees with good structure:
#3 a. will live longer
b. will be safer
c. are no different than trees with poor structure

Which tree grows biggest?
a. Crepe Myrtle
#4 b. Sequoia
c. Oak tree
d. Yellow Tabebuia

When pruning a tree:
#5 a. there is no right or wrong way
b. trees should not be pruned
c. pruning can be beneficial but must be done properly









APPENDIX C
EXAMPLE CONTINGENCY TABLE

Example contingency table. Calculated June-September, 2006. Chi-square analysis is used to

compare data which falls into definitive categories. In a random, non-biased sample, it is

expected that data will fall into categories with equal probability. The expected equal probability

is known as the null hypothesis. Chi-square analysis allows for a statistical analysis to explain

deviations to the null hypothesis; deviations may be indicative of a reaction of a particular factor

or it can be due to randomness. Chi-square analysis can answer this. Contingency tables are set

up to analyze data using the chi square analysis. First, a count of responses, or observed values,

is compiled. The observed values are converted into percentages by dividing the number of

responses by the total population of the group. Next, the expected values are calculated. Each

column and row of the observed values is summed, and a final value is calculated as the sum of

all columns and rows. The expected value is calculated by taking the product of each position's

corresponding row sum and column sum, and dividing this by the sum of sums. The chi square

value for each position is calculated by squaring the difference between each observed and

expected value divided by the expected value. The sum of the chi-square values within the

contingency table is compared to a critical value from the chi-square table. If the chi square

value is larger than the critical value, it is stated that the groups being compared are statistically

different, or the null hypothesis is rejected. If the chi-square value is smaller, the null hypothesis

is accepted; the samples are not stated to be statistically different. In this example, the null

hypothesis is accepted; samples are not considered statistically different.











Tree #3
Observed Incorrect Correct Correct Correct Incorrect Incorrect
Values
Circling Trunk Included Codominant Attachments of No apparent Totals
roots bark trunks equal sizes defects
Pre-Test, 28 89 33 25 27 19 221
Traditional__ _____
Pre-Test, 14 51 17 13 18 10 123
Outdoor
Observed
Values, %
Total
Pre-Test, 25.23% 80.18% 29.73% 22.52% 24.32% 17.12% 199.10%
Traditional
Pre-Test, 20.29% 73.91% 24.64% 18.84% 26.09% 14.49% 178.26%
Outdoor
Total 45.52% 154.09% 54.37% 41.36% 50.41% 31.61% 377.36%
Expected
Values

Pre-Test, 24.01% 81.30% 28.68% 21.82% 26.60% 16.68%
Traditional
Pre-Test, 21.50% 72.79% 25.68% 19.54% 23.81% 14.93%
Outdoor
Chi Square Chi-square = (Observed Value- Expected Value)2 / Expected Value
Values
Pre-Test, 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00
Traditional
Pre-Test, 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00
Outdoor
Totals 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00

Chi-square 0.73
Because the chi-square, 0.73, is smaller than the table value (11.07) at the 0.05 level with 5
degrees of freedom, we accept the null hypothesis (that there is no difference between the
students assigned to the two methods of instruction Pre-test) for tree #3.









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BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH

Laura Sanagorski was born on December 2, 1980, as the middle child of three girls. She

came to Florida from South-Central Pennsylvania in 2000. Her study of marine biology brought

her to Florida, but a new-found love of tropical and sub-tropical trees persuaded her to make it

her home. She graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Science degree in environmental

horticulture from the University of Florida Tropical Research and Education Center in

Homestead. She is currently the City Landscaper for the City of Deerfield Beach, Florida.

Professional affiliations include the executive committee of the Florida Urban Forestry

Council, International Society of Arboriculture, Society of Municipal Arborists, Society of

American Foresters, and Professionals Educating and Advocating for Respect in Relationahips

(PEARR). She is an International Society of Arboriculture Certified Arborist.

Sanagorski's career goals and passions include increasing and improving our urban forests,

and to improve the health, soundness, and aesthetics of our environments and living spaces

specifically through proper arboricultural and horticultural practices, and through the education

of others.