On October 26, 2018 our class went to Vance Creek to water test. Right off my students noticed something peculiar about the stream: it was not flowing very strong……but why? Vance Creek currently has 3 beaver dams that we could see. Two of the dams are upstream from our testing site so it made for an interesting sample. Many of the kids had never seen a beaver dam or a live beaver before, so that was a big hit. Some student responses were:
“My favorite part was seeing the beaver, the dam and the beaver chopped tree, oh and the caterpillar! I learned how clean water is so important.”
“I learned it is important what degrees the water is for fish eggs to hatch.”
“I learned that water can change and my favorite part was doing the tests like a scientist.”
At the beginning of October our class started the 31 Day Zero Waste Challenge. Students are really taking ownership and realizing that doing just one little thing to help their environment makes a huge difference, especially over a lifetime.
Some student comments are: “One time my family and I used the 31 day challenge when we went to Papa Pete’s Pizza. Well, it was not just me that did it, the challenge was to ‘say no to straws.’ All of us did it, we just said, ‘No Thanks!’ I was so surprised I got my whole family to do it!”
“We are reusing our costumes for next year. This year I was Medusa, next year I am going to be a fortune teller, so I will use the same costume!”
Students realize that although they might not always be able to practice zero-waste, they are forming great habits that all add up to helping their planet.
Our 4th grade students had a presentation on Southern Resident Killer Whales, specifically their decline. Students were challenged to use less water, less power, Reduce, Reuse & Recycle and more to help their environment. They each documented what they are doing at home or will do and our class results show we will make an impact.
Submitted by Erica Fredrickson, 4th grade teacher in the Montesano School District