The River – We Are Connected

Where does the water that goes into storm drains go?
How does it affect the Mississippi River when we put pesticides on our gardens and lawns? 

How are we inspired by the river? How are we connected to it?
How can we protect it?

In December, our middle school teachers and students partnered with Capitol Region Watershed DistrictHamline University’s Center for Global Environmental Education, and Wilderness Inquiry to learn more about the Mississippi River and how it is connected to urban communities, including our own neighborhood. 

Middle school students went on a field trip to Crosby Farm. They learned about their local watershed (Capitol Region), the Mississippi River, urban runoff, water quality, and how to measure water quality. 

Students made observations, tested the water, collected data, and asked questions about the watershed and urban runoff. They had thoughtful discussions about pollution, the river, and how they could help. They also spent some time doing team building activities and learning how to build a fire. What do you do after you build a fire? You roast marshmallows! 

Protecting the River By Taking Action in Our Neighborhoods
FSMN teachers and students will participate in the Adopt-a-Drain Program to learn about storm drains, urban runoff, and measures to prevent pollutants from reaching the Mississippi river. 

Teachers and students will adopt and maintain drains around the school. They will record data on the type of debris that blocks drains and how much debris they are collecting, and submit the data online. 

Do You Want to Adopt-a-Drain at Home?
It is easy to adopt a drain if you want to help out at home. Check to see if there is a drain to adopt in your neighborhood. 

What’s a great skill to have on a cold day? Fire starting skills sure come in handy. Thanks to Wilderness Inquiry educators for teaching our students this skill. 
Learning about watersheds, watershed pollutants, and how to protect the Mississippi River is important work. So is being together outside and having fun. 

See our blog post, Learning About the Mississippi and How You Can Help, that will post on Monday, January 17, for resources.

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