Southmoreland students test water in Greenlick Run
By Marilyn Forbes
Published: Wednesday, May 15, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
Taking to the outdoors for the second time this year, students from the Southmoreland High School earth and science classes ventured to Greenlick Run to spend a morning testing the water in the little picturesque stream that runs through Bullskin Township.
“They will be testing the Water Quality Index, and the Pollution Tolerance Index,” said teacher Lindsay DiCasolo. “They will use that information to determine it's condition.”
Several weeks ago, the students did a similar testing at Stauffer Run in Scottdale, a stream that has issues with urban run-off and mine drainage.
“They will now be able to see the differences between a healthy stream and one that is not so healthy,” DiCasolo said.
The students, which number about 150, have been learning about the importance of water quality for several weeks in their in-school classes, and found it fun and interesting to be able to take their new found knowledge and apply it to an actual body of water.
“We've been learning about water quality,” Jake Beistel said, adding he enjoyed the outside classroom. “I think this is fun. It's interesting.”
The students worked with the stream's physical characteristics, its biology and its chemistry.
“I think that this project is a great way to get these kids outdoors and to actually see what they are learning in the classroom,” said Patty Miller, Jacobs Creek watershed executive director. “I think that they learn more by actually being able to apply in a hands-on manner what they learn.”
The students had far better luck at Greenlick with the catching of macro-invertebrate, as the clean water produced plenty of little creatures for them to study and release.
“This stream is in far better condition than Stauffer Run,” DiCasolo said. “They'll find many things here that they can study.”
The students will now take both sets of results from the two different streams and compare them, then they will design and build ways to clean the polluted water of Stauffer Run.
Their water cleaning methods will be used on two-liter containers of the water they will experiment with in their classrooms.
“This is a more productive way to teach the kids about the environment,” Miller said. “This is isn't a book. It's a great way to get the kids out and to actually see and learn about their environment.”
Marilyn Forbes is a freelance writer.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.