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Listening to the River Project Overview

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Listening to the River Project Overview

  1. 1. Listening to the River The Project
  2. 2. What is Listening to the River? <ul><li>Informal Science Education project funded by a $1.4 million federal grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) </li></ul><ul><li>An exciting opportunity to engage students in self-directed science exploration and multi-media documentation of their local watershed </li></ul>
  3. 3. Why is this Exciting and Newsworthy? <ul><li>Important and rare NSF grant coming to the GT Region </li></ul><ul><li>Opportunity to showcase our local watershed and build capacity in local organizations </li></ul><ul><li>Opportunity for local youth to develop science and technology skills </li></ul><ul><li>Shows what’s possible with community partnerships </li></ul>
  4. 4. Who is Involved? Coalition for Watershed Education <ul><li>Land Information Access Association (LIAA) </li></ul><ul><li>Northwestern Michigan College’s Great Lakes Water Studies Institute (WSI) </li></ul><ul><li>Great Lakes Children’s Museum (GLCM) </li></ul><ul><li>Interlochen Public Radio (IPR) </li></ul>
  5. 5. Who is Involved? Supporting Organizations <ul><li>MSU Extension/4H </li></ul><ul><li>Traverse City Optimist Club </li></ul><ul><li>Grand Traverse County Conservation District </li></ul><ul><li>Girl Scouts of Crooked Tree </li></ul>
  6. 6. Informal Science Education <ul><li>Science learning that occurs outside of the classroom </li></ul><ul><li>Engages learners of all ages and backgrounds </li></ul><ul><li>Voluntary, open-ended and self-directed </li></ul><ul><li>Hands-on, active experiences in </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Science Technology Engineering Math (STEM) </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. OK…but what are we going to do? <ul><li>Four Primary Components over 3 years </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Watershed Discovery Expeditions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Soundscapes Radio Segments </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Waterscapes: Traveling Children’s Museum or Science Center Exhibits </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Listening to the River Website </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. Project Activities <ul><li>Watershed Discovery Expeditions </li></ul><ul><li>Youth (ages 11-17) field teams join adult guides and science and technology experts to explore and document various aspects of their local watershed with state-of-the-art mapping and multimedia technology. </li></ul>
  9. 9. Project Activities <ul><li>Soundscapes Radio Segments </li></ul><ul><li>Students document their watershed discoveries with advanced sound recording technology to produce independent radio segments for broadcast on Interlochen Public Radio. </li></ul>
  10. 10. Project Activities <ul><li>Waterscapes: Traveling Children’s Museum or Science Center Exhibits </li></ul><ul><li>Content collected on the field excursions is used to create immersive exhibits that recreate the experience of exploring a watershed. </li></ul>
  11. 11. Project Activities <ul><li>Listening to the River Website </li></ul><ul><li>www.listeningtotheriver.org </li></ul><ul><li>Offers project information, educational resources and serves as a project management site and place to collect, aggregate and display mapped watershed data and multimedia information. </li></ul>
  12. 12. What’s in it for Teens? <ul><li>Make field trips into your local watershed, focusing on science and technology; </li></ul><ul><li>Use technologically advanced equipment: such as GPS units, super sensitive microphones, digital and video cameras, sophisticated web design software; </li></ul><ul><li>Help design interpretive museum exhibits; </li></ul><ul><li>Produce radio broadcasts; </li></ul><ul><li>Connect with others who share your interests. </li></ul>
  13. 13. Excursion Guidelines <ul><li>At least six youth team members, working in pairs; </li></ul><ul><li>One or more adult volunteer mentors and/or content specialists; </li></ul><ul><li>A structure that gives teens the primary responsibility for making decisions on what data to collect; </li></ul>
  14. 14. <ul><li>4. A preliminary field excursion plan, jointly agreed upon by all team members, that includes individual and group goals for project learning and group interaction; </li></ul><ul><li>5. Opportunities for additional learning experiences and production outside of the field work; </li></ul><ul><li>6. Reflection time after the field excursions; </li></ul><ul><li>7. Personal evaluation and recognition of progress on individual and group goals. </li></ul>
  15. 15. Expectations & Choices for Teen Participants <ul><li>Choose the content </li></ul><ul><li>Get out into the field </li></ul><ul><li>Production time </li></ul><ul><li>Reflection time at mid-point </li></ul><ul><li>Community presentations </li></ul>
  16. 16. WD Excursions vs. School <ul><li>Grade-free </li></ul><ul><li>No texts </li></ul><ul><li>Peers of all ages </li></ul><ul><li>Non-competitive teams </li></ul><ul><li>Travel to little-known places </li></ul>
  17. 17. The Role of Volunteer Guides … <ul><li>Work with teens on field trips to build a sound and video map of settings throughout a local watershed; </li></ul><ul><li>Help youth use technology to record perceptions of a watershed; </li></ul>
  18. 18. … Role of Guides <ul><li>Facilitate observation skills; </li></ul><ul><li>Encourage teens to take on leadership in interpreting their perceptions and observations for others. </li></ul><ul><li>Connect with young people who share your interests. </li></ul>
  19. 19. What are the Benefits ? <ul><li>► Opportunities to develop life-long friendships with youths, parents and other adults; </li></ul><ul><li>► A chance to share your leadership, skills and interests with area youth in settings that promote real world science learning; </li></ul><ul><li>► Advance the goals of your organization through collaboration with other groups. </li></ul>
  20. 20. …and more perks: <ul><li>► Opportunities to get your hands on sophisticated audio, video, GPS/GIS units and other watershed education resource materials; </li></ul><ul><li>► A chance to be part of an emerging national model. </li></ul><ul><li>► A small honorarium for your organization. </li></ul>
  21. 21. Qualifications of guides <ul><li>► Display a commitment to developing young people and to be sensitive to their abilities and needs. </li></ul><ul><li>► Have completed the Volunteer Selection Process and been approved by CWE/MSU-E staff. </li></ul><ul><li>► Display the ability to communicate effectively with youth, parents and other adults. </li></ul><ul><li>► Have the ability to work with minimal supervision from Listening to the River staff. </li></ul><ul><li>► Possess the ability to educate youth while nurturing positive self-esteem, decision-making, responsibility and leadership in youth. </li></ul>
  22. 22. Who are the Content Specialists? <ul><li>Guides/mentors who: </li></ul><ul><li>truly enjoy working with young people; </li></ul><ul><li>Are passionate about an area of technology or science and applies it to watershed education; </li></ul><ul><li>Are willing to be a role model for youth. </li></ul>Insert photo here
  23. 23. Important Next Steps <ul><li>Recruiting participants </li></ul><ul><li>Area teens for field teams </li></ul><ul><li>Adult volunteer guides/specialists </li></ul>
  24. 24. How to get involved (now & later) <ul><li>Return postcard </li></ul><ul><li>Complete application forms right now </li></ul><ul><li>Invite staff to visit your group/organization </li></ul>
  25. 25. Interested? Contact us! Becky Ewing NMC Water Studies Institute 231.995.1793 [email_address] Mary Manner Great Lakes Children’s Museum 231.932.4526 [email_address] Carl Ferguson, Chris Kitzman Joe VanderMeulen, Land Information Access Association 231.929.3696 [email_address] www.listeningtotheriver.org Peter Payette Interlochen Public Radio 231.276.4446 [email_address]

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