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Floating Classroom

2008 Strome, Alberta, Canada

Students from Strome Junior High wanted to get their classroom outside taking action for the Battle River. For their CFW Proposal they suggested having students at their school testing water quality to answer the question “How Healthy is the Battle River?”

After winning in the 2008 Central Alberta CFW contest, they decided to implement their idea- a “Floating Classroom”. The purpose of their project was to keep track of the health of the river. The students tested the water in June and September to monitor water quality over the year as well as over many years. The students liked the idea because “the students are active in the process and can understand what is happening by their own hands-on experiences.” As fluctuation occurs over the years they will be able to examine patterns or changes and chart what exactly is happening.

Their objectives were to get students involved in their watershed in an interesting and meaningful way, have fun with friends, see interesting things along the way, and do real science outside!

The students thought that the science data collected is important and they wanted their observations added to a data base that would, identify trends and changes in the health of the Battle River, and over time answer the question “How healthy is the Battle River?” They hoped that this information would create awareness, among students and community members and inform future projects while their students learned about ecosystem concepts, and enhanced their lab skills, and understanding of water quality analysis.

This project helped the environment by creating awareness, increasing student knowledge and understanding of the watershed, increasing their practical use of investigation skills and enabled them to participate in real science.