The BWET Grant
The BWET grant was awarded to Charles County Public Schools (CCPS) from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) for a total of approximately $300,000 over 3 years (2017-2020).
This grant will allow educators to integrate Meaningful Watershed Education Experiences (MWEEs) into middle and high school classes throughout the CCPS system. CCPS is able to utilize the MWEE structure that incorporates GLOBE and NOAA resources, obtain supplies for the units, and provide professional development to teachers and CCPS staff through teacher institutes and workshops. This grant also allowed CCPS to hire a full time staff position dedicated to managing and implementing MWEEs.
The goal of this grant is to reach all seventh grade science classes, High School Biology and Earth Systems classes. The estimated yearly participation will be between 5,500 and 6,000 students and approximately 50 teachers. The students will participate in MWEE field studies at their school or local parks and create action projects to help protect the Chesapeake Bay watershed.
Partners with this grant include, but not limited to, The Alice Ferguson Foundation (AFF) (our primary partner), Port Tobacco River Conservancy, Mattawoman Creek Watershed Society, Charles County Department of Parks and Recreation, and Master Gardeners/Master Naturalists.
Modules that are part of the integrated middle school and high school curriculum include:
Talkin’ Trash: Students examine the impact of trash and litter on their watershed and the environment as a whole. Students will also learn what to do with the trash we create and how personal choices can make a difference.
Alien Invasives: The students will learn the importance of biodiversity, learn the basics of plant identification, and explore the extent of alien plant invasion in their school or community.
Watershed Watchdogs: Students will conduct different chemistry tests that will help them determine the water quality of a local water body at their school.
Water Canaries: Students will learn to identify macroinvertebrates and determine the water quality by using a sensitivity rating. Depending on the school, students may have a chance to visit a stream and catch macroinvertebrates.
Sustainability: Students will inventory and assess a park or school in terms of sustainability. Students will get hands on with solar and wind energy as the further explore the topic.
For more information on BTW/GLOBE training or to schedule a field study at your school, please contact Tim Emhoff (firstname.lastname@example.org).