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HCS students experience hands-on James River watershed field investigations

HCS students experience hands-on James River watershed field investigations

Students from nine Hampton schools – Spratley Gifted Center, Cooper Elementary Magnet School for Technology, Phoebus High School, Davis Middle School, Kecoughtan High School, Lindsay Middle School, Bryan Elementary School, Asbury Elementary School, and Burbank Elementary School - recently had the opportunity to participate in student field experiences on the Hampton River.  The experience was made available through grant funding.

HCS students experience hands-on James River watershed field investigations In the fall of 2015, the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) awarded the Hampton City Schools science department with a three-year $360,000 grant for the purpose of providing watershed education for students, educators and administrators.  The grant was used to establish the Hampton (Systemic) Environmental Literacy Program (H.E.L.P.).  Participation in the program requires that each cohort teacher participate in a weeklong summer professional development session and three teacher-embedded professional training days.  Each cohort teacher and their students are required to complete a Meaningful Watershed Educational Experience (MWEE) field investigation.

During the week of March 7, students and their cohort teacher participated in student field experiences on the Hampton River, the James River, and the Chesapeake Bay.  Students gained a vital understanding of scientific and watershed concepts through investigative activities on a variety of “floating classrooms.”  Through these hands-on experiences in the watershed, students engaged in standards-based field studies, authentic data collection and water quality analysis.  The activities reinforce science, mathematics and technology standards while helping students to develop critical thinking skills that they can use to take action to improve water quality in their local watershed.

Students and staff enjoyed the experience and the first-hand lessons.

“Overall the field investigation was a wonderful experience,” said Jaylen Washington, an eighth grade student at Lindsay Middle School.  “It helped us to understand the impact that a single individual can have on the environment.  Also, it gave us the opportunity to take things we learned in the classroom and apply them to real life.”

Marci Miles, fourth grade teacher at Cooper said, “My students all enjoyed the experience and want to go again.  They were excited about the real life experiences and hands-on activities.  They were able to explore things that they would not be able to do in the classroom and they were able to associate the experience in real time. "

HCS students experience hands-on James River watershed field investigations

©2017 HAMPTON CITY SCHOOLS All rights reserved - One Franklin Street, Hampton Virginia 23669 - 757-727-2000

HCS does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, age or other protected classes in its programs and activities and provides equal access to the Boy Scouts and other designated youth groups. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Robbin G. Ruth, Executive Director, Human Resources, One Franklin Street, Hampton, VA 23669 757-727-2000. 

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