Minnesota students are playing a critical role in helping communities reduce the wildfire risk of homes by conducting Firewise Assessments. Knowing where its high-risk homes are and what factors make those homes high risk is valuable information. The images to the left show an example of Firewise data entered by students and a Density Surface Map (DSM) that shows "High Risk Areas". Rural fire departments can reguest Firewise Studies to assist them in implementing mitigation to prevent homes from loss to wildfire. Contact GIS 4 Schools for this free service.
The Minnesota DNR Firewise Project is working with local communities by passing federal Fire Plan funds through to local communities as grants for various "on-the-ground" activities. For more information click on:Firewise for communities
Lesson 4a: Using Google Maps to conduct a Level 1 Wildfire Risk Assessments. Students use Google mapping systems to assess the risk of wildfire in a Northern Community. Students learn about GIS mapping skills, overlays, scale and aerial photography. This lesson matches Standards 188.8.131.52.1, 184.108.40.206.1, 220.127.116.11.2 and 18.104.22.168.1 (Use Google Earth to describe how people modify their environment)
Lesson 6a: Public Land Survey and GPS - Students learn about the Public Land Survey System and are involved in a hands on exercise using GPS receivers, compasses and tape measures to map their own grid. Students learn the how GPS receivers work and how to record GPS coordinates and how to map them. This lesson matches Standard: 22.214.171.124.1 (Minnesota History: How and why land was changed over time)
Firewise Lessons that match Minnesota High School Geography Standards.
Lesson 4a: Level 1 Wildfire Risk Assessment using Google Earth: - Students use Google mapping systems to assess the risk of wildfire in a Northern Community. Students learn about GIS mapping skills, overlays, scale and areial photography. This lesson matches GeoSpatial standard: 126.96.36.199.2 (Use geospatial technologies to develop pland for analyzing and solving local and tegiaonal problems - E.G. wildfires)
Lesson 4b: Level 1 Wildfire Risk Assessment using JMAPS: - Students are involved in a real project to assess the risk of wildfire in a Northern Community. Using an on-line GIS system, students learn about GIS mapping skills, overlays, scale, areial photography and spatial analysis techniques. This lesson matches GeoSpatial standard: 188.8.131.52.2 (Use geospatial technologies to develop pland for analyzing and solving local and tegiaonal problems - E.G. wildfires)
GIS 4 Schools provided technical support to the West Virginia Firewise Project. Working cooperatively with the Eagle Promise Charitable Fund and the West Virginia Divison of Forestry, GIS 4 Schools developed an interactive GIS application to identify homes at risk of wildfire. Students at Hedgesville H.S. used the system to rate all homes in the Woods Community. GIS 4 Schools analyzed the data to generate a Density Surface Map display on the left. The map identifies "High Risk Areas" and was the basis for prioritizing areas that need more analysis.
With this map as a guide, residents of the Woods Community conducted onsite assessments of homes in the "High Risk Areas". For more examples of analysis of Wildfire Risks look atFirewise at the Woods.
GIS 4 Schools provides lessons that educators can use in their classrooms.