Third grade is busy conducting research for their Florida Wetlands investigation. Last week, they collaborated with Shorecrest eighth graders in Ms. Jeakle's marine science class. Eighth graders taught third graders about water testing for salinity, and testing pH levels in the water and algae at the Charger Channel on campus. Third graders helped remove overgrowing algae from the bay grasses because it isn't healthy for the plants. Some were excited about getting dirty, others were not thrilled at all. After this field experience, students wrote to express what they learned. The next time they work together, students will plant bay grasses in the wild to help prevent soil erosion.
This week, two city organizations visited to educate third graders on the ways they help maintain various ecosystems in our city. Keep Pinellas Beautiful and Friends of Crescent Lake were incredible guests. Students learned all about our city's effort to decrease the presence of invasive species and how organizations all around the city do their part to maintain our native plants and reduce pollution. The guests brought samples of plants, invasive and native. Students took notes and effectively practiced active listening.
More hands-on learning came next as the group took a trip to Crescent Lake Park to remove invasive water lettuce alongside a team from Keep Pinellas Beautiful. Working in pairs from canoes, the kids removed over 1,000 pounds of the water lettuce from the lake, allowing air and light to diffuse into the water and make room for native plants, fish, and wildlife.