Thursday, February 12, 2009

What happened at Echo Lake Science Night Tuesday Feb. 10th

Kids search for macroinvertebrates in simulated Thornton Creek water

Jennifer Youngman is Outreach Coordinator for Homewaters Project. She sent along this information about "Echo Lake Science Night" this past Tuesday. (Thanks Jennifer!)

Homewaters Project brought its hands-on "Macroinvertebrate Search" to Echo Lake Elementary School's Science Night Tuesday, Feb. 10. Homewaters Project connects Shoreline and Seattle students to the natural environment right in their own neighborhoods, through field investigations and other inquiry-based programs linked to school curricula.

"Macroinvertebrate Search" is modeled after Homewaters Project's "Tiny Neighbors" and "Land and Water" field investigations, in which students search for real organisms in Thornton Creek and local wetlands. Indoors at Science Night, children searched for images of macroinvertebrates on glass gems simulating creek water. Then they identified the tiny animals with the help of a chart and determined how healthy their simulated creek water was based on the types of organisms found in it.

Homewaters Project volunteer extraordinaire Gretchen Graber helps a young scientist identify tiny organisms that live in creeks and wetlands.

Midge larvae and nematodes are two of the macroinvertebrates found in Thornton Creek.

Pollution-tolerant blue-winged olive mayflies, water mites and aquatic worms indicate that the water quality is pretty poor.

Link to Homewaters Project blog, with tips and activities to help you and your family explore your local watershed

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