Extension Educator, Susan Boser presents information on watersheds and land use to 5th grade science students at Winchester Thurston School
For the second year in a row, Susan Boser, an educator with Extension’s Water Team is working with the 5th grade science class at Winchester Thurston School in Allegheny County to teach them about local watersheds and ways to improve a pond habitat on the school campus. The students have been involved with a local pond management company that is working to control nuisance plants and runoff into the pond, and Extension is providing the educational component. Hands on learning includes water testing, Enviroscape model demonstrations, and using Penn State’s Rain to Drain 4-H curriculum on stormwater to learn how the pond watershed is impacted by nearby land uses. Last spring the students were involved with planting emergent plants along the pond shoreline to help filter runoff from surrounding roads and parking lots.
Because of their efforts, they are able to see small improvements in the pond water quality several months later. Programming will continue throughout the 2017-2018 school year, and the hope is that the pond will continue to improve and remain an aesthetically pleasing asset for the entire school campus to enjoy.