ALAMEDA, Calif. (CitizenWire) — Sixth grade science students at the Alameda Community Learning Center will take on the roles of real-life environmental scientists this school year, thanks to a collaboration with Save the Bay and grant support from Bio-Rad. Using the Pasco SPARK system of dataloggers to enable remote collection of pH, salinity, and ORP data, learners will conduct a geochemical and microbiological survey of two native plant restoration areas in the SF Bay.
The analysis will provide a map of pH, salinity, and oxidation/reduction potential, which will be used by the Save the Bay organization to select the optimal plants for each area. The final project results will be presented to Save the Bay in the spring of 2011, in the form of GIS constructed maps with embedded geochemical and microbiological data.
The Alameda Community Learning Center is located on San Francisco Bay, a short distance from Save the Bay’s Damon Marsh native plant restoration areas. On a field trip to help plant native plants, students learned that the salinity and pH of the soil is influenced by tidal and rainfall patterns together with the flow of water from the nearby creek. As a result, it is hard to predict which plants will do well in any specific area.
Curious about whether they could assist in the plant restoration effort by creating a map of soil conditions that could be used to guide plant selection, ACLC Science Facilitator Milt Friedman and his class partnered with Save the Bay and applied for financial support from Bio-Rad, a Hercules, CA based company, to bring the project to life.
About the ACLC, Save the Bay and Bio-Rad:
The Alameda Community Learning Center (ACLC) is a top-ranked public charter school serving grades 6-12. A California Distinguished School, the ACLC offers project-based, self-directed learning in an innovative, technology-rich environment. The ACLC is a student, teacher and parent-led school.
Save The Bay’s award-winning Watershed Education Programs offer middle and high school students and teachers environmental education experiences on the Bay and in their schools. These programs provide students and teachers with an awareness of the Bay, a connection between their daily lives and a local wetland, and a sense of responsibility for the Bay through active stewardship.
Bio-Rad manufactures and supplies life science research, healthcare, analytical chemistry, and other markets with products and systems used to separate complex chemical and biological materials and to identify, analyze, and purify their components. Bio-Rad’s customers include hospitals, universities, major research institutions, and biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies. The Bio-Rad Science Grant is dedicated to promoting sustainable science projects in the classroom for years to come.
For more information about The Alameda Community Learning Center or its collaboration with Save the Bay, please contact Lora Lewis at 510.205.2898.
For more information about The Alameda Community Learning Center, visit http://alamedaclc.org .
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