Wow! What a great day we had today at Lakeshore! If you were able to come today, you got to see some awesome learning happening. If not, please plan to join us next time! We started the day with a session on birds and their adaptations with Dr. DeRoche from Dalton State College. Then, we built wetland water filter models and tested them using water from the wetland.
Next, we moved into station rotations with visiting experts. The first station was led by Dirk Verhoeff and Ms. Frizzle (Shell Underwood)! They taught us about the Conasauga River and how it connects to our wetland at Lakeshore Park. We made models representing storm runoff and how pollution can get washed into our water supply. Ms. Frizzle even brought her pet chameleon, Liz!
Next, we visited the turtle identification station led by 4 Dalton State students. Two of the students work with Dr. Lugthart on their turtle data project, so they were very helpful! They helped the students identify, weigh, and measure the turtles we caught (2 Stinkpot and 3 pond sliders), as well as provided lots of extra information about the turtle study!
We then moved to a station led by Don Johnson and Steve Bratton with Dalton Utilities. They also discussed the watershed and how pollution can seep into the wetlands. The students were able to discuss ways to keep our water supply cleaner and protect the wetlands with people that actually work to clean our water supply!
Next, we visited the station led by Dr. Mohammed from Dalton State College where they learned to identify plants of the wetlands. They also learned how wetland plants help filter contaminants from the water.
Following the station about the plants that SHOULD be in the wetlands, we learned about invasive plant species that should NOT be growing in our wetland from Dr. Dunbar from DSC. Students then identified and collected samples of these invasive plants.
Our final station was learning about the macro invertebrates that live in the ponds in the wetlands with Dr. Lugthart from Dalton State College. Macro invertebrates are large enough to see without a microscope, but we did have magnifying glasses available and the kids had a great time collecting, identifying, and learning about these creatures!
All in all, it was an AWESOME day! I am so pleased to have had this opportunity to share in this learning with my students and parents! Also, yesterday when we went to set the traps, we found a complete snapping turtle skeleton! It is currently on display outside the Fourth grade classrooms. Come and check it out!!
Today we went to Lakeshore to retrieve and reset our traps. The picture above is where we set our trap yesterday. We are borrowing traps from DMS, and we will need to return them after this week. We have ordered our own traps, however, and they should be here shortly. We will resume trapping when they get here, and continue until it gets too cold. We were lucky this afternoon to get THREE Stinkpot/Musk turtles in our trap! We brought them back to school to measure them and study their adaptations. We should be getting our scientific scales and measuring calipers soon, so we will be able to measure them more accurately.
We are beginning to write informational articles about Lakeshore and the turtle study in order to publish a newsletter. Each student has been assigned a topic to work on during writing time, and they will be able to research information in class. We will then compile them and publish the articles (hopefully in a digital format). Look for more information in the coming weeks!
Hopefully we will catch more turtles when we retrieve our traps tomorrow! I'll keep you posted!
**Update: We did NOT catch any new turtles in our traps on Thursday. We will try again in the next week or two!
Mrs. Rojas's 4th Grade
This page is designed to update parents and students about what is happening each week in our class. It may be a short blog entry, a picture, or other media, depending on the skills covered each week. I look forward to hearing your comments and suggestions!