Headwaters Science Institute was excited to be back with students from Sacramento this fall, as we joined the 6th graders of Sacramento Country Day for a week-long program examining how humans and invasive species can affect habitats in an urban environment.
Almost 50 students got to explore and learn about science through a combination of digital classroom lessons and an in-person field day along the American River. The students designed and implemented their own studies to test diverse research questions such as “How does the Watt Avenue bridge affect the water temperature of the American River?” and “How does soil moisture compare between locations with native and invasive plant species?” Headwaters staff, along with local graduate students and scientists Rob Blenk, Aviva Fiske, Rich Kim, and Jasmine Williamshen, joined the students outdoors for a field day full of data collection and exploration. The students also took part in a river cleanup at the end of the field day to help the local environment. Each group later graphed their results, interpreted their data, and presented their findings to their classmates.
This program, like all of Headwaters’ student-driven research programs, emphasized the importance of curiosity in learning the scientific process. Following the program, 96% of the students felt confident in their ability to apply the scientific method and 92% said they learned something they would not have in a regular science class! As one student commented at the end of our program, “I learned that science is a really cool and fun way to figure out how things work!”
We are excited to be providing these science opportunities to both middle and high school students again! Teachers, if you are interested in this type of unique program for your students, please reach out to discuss options. We are here for you and your students!