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Dunne Academy: Watershed Model Presentation

Posted by Ron Wolford -

Jasmine and I made our way to the Dunne Technology Academy to educate the 7th, 6th, and 2nd grade classes on watersheds and pollution. This presentation consists of describing the water cycle and giving students are perspective of where their water comes from and how important it is. The students learned that their water comes from Lake Michigan, but that the runoff from Chicago also runs into Lake Michigan. This was shocking to many of the students and they could not believe that waste water and runoff went to the same source that they drank from. The lesson focused on learning two basic vocabulary words: "runoff" and "infiltration". Both are very important when considering the importance of clean water. To demonstrate these concepts, we used a watershed model that contained a residential area, a treatment plant, a factory, a farm, some roads, a couple of streams, and a lake. We allowed the students to add pollution to certain parts of the model such as cocoa powder for soil, and green sprinkles for fertilizer. Adding water allows the students to see how the pollutants runoff into the streams and lakes after rain or watering a lawn. The students were shocked with the state of the lake after the water had been added, and every class agreed that they would not want to drink that water.

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