River Reach- Ohio River Education Program

|River Reach- Ohio River Education Program

River Reach- Ohio River Education Program

On August 23rd and 24th, the Queen City Riverboat company in conjunction with F.O.R.E ( Foundation for Ohio River Education) brought a boat to Vevay that spends part of its time as a floating classroom.  “While on-board, students test water quality using the same methods and equipment as scientists who monitor and protect our river.”

On-Board Activities Included

Water Sampling:  Students will collect water samples from the top and bottom decks of the boat using VanDorne Samplers, plankton nets and buckets. Students will visually check the clarity, temperature and odor of the samples while discussing their observations at the sampling site.

Ohio River Scavenger Hunt:  Students will compete in small teams to spot items on land or in the water. Items will include landmarks such as buildings, parks, and bridges; fish and macroinvertebrate habitat; birds and mammals; and point and non-point sources of pollution.

Water Testing:  Students will use colorimetric tests to measure the “Big Three” parameters that are essential for aquatic life:  temperature, dissolved oxygen and pH, and will learn how they relate to each other. They will also measure turbidity (water clarity). Middle school students may also measure nutrients and E. coli as time allows in the schedule.

Go Fish!:  In this activity, students work with real specimens of fish collected from the sampling site to learn about fish morphology and adaptations that allow fish to thrive in the river environment. Students also learn why fish are used as indicators of water quality.

Planktomania:  Students will conduct a plankton tow and study both phytoplankton (algae) and zooplankton from the river. They will also learn how plankton can be used as a water quality indicator.

“This overall experience gives students a sense of place in their watershed and an understanding of the challenges that need to be addressed in protecting a resource that literally runs through the lives of millions of people.”   -F.O.R.E

-Senior Declan McAlister commented on how informative the experience was and feels he learned a lot about the river that he didn’t know before, he recommends continuing this field trip for future classes.

While one grade was aboard the boat, the other grade took part in leadership/team building activities on the river bank and also performed community service by helping with various aspects of setup for the Swiss Wine Festival.  Peg Ehlers and Kyle Weaver from the Purdue Extension office organized and led the leadership activities.  Kirk Works and his Wine Festival board members organized the students efforts with community service.
-Our day at Ogle Park was great … the weather was incredible, the teachers on the boat and the leadership activities went well and were spot on.”  Mr. Goewert, HS Principal.  “I especially want to thank all the teachers and community members that made this experience a reality.”
This was a 2 day event – opposite the day on the boat students heard from speakers representing 1 Voice (Lawrenceburg), Point of Grace (Madison), and Narcotics Anonymous.  These folks educated and discussed the seriousness of opioid addiction and local resources available. The school staff and Drug Free SC wanted to support our students in grades 9-12.
-“The speakers were very appropriate, honest, caring, and forthright with our students. Thank you so much to the presenters and thank you to the folks with Drug Free SC for supporting our kids.” … Carrie Barwick.
Organizations providing grant funding for this great opportunity:
F.O.R.E, Community Foundation of Southern Indiana, Purdue Extension Office, Southern Indiana REMC, Impact Sports, Generation On, and especially the Vevay/Switzerland Foundation.
By | 2017-08-25T16:36:06-04:00 August 25th, 2017|Switzerland County High School, Switzerland County School Corporation|Comments Off on River Reach- Ohio River Education Program

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