Over 70 schools in the state of New York took students field-sampling at about 60 sites on the Hudson River. This is the eighth year for this event, sponsored by the Department of Environmental Conservation's Hudson River Estuary Program and run in conjunction with Hudson Basin River Watch.
"A Day in the Life of the Hudson River” not only has the advantage of giving NYC youth a great science class, which may not be part of the original curriculum as a result of budget cuts, but it also involves them directly in today’s environmental issues faced by the region they live in. Young New Yorkers get a chance to experience hands-on how to use lab equipment for measuring water quality and chemistry, observing tides, weather and fauna. The data collected is then posted via the Internet, and will be available to all teachers in the Hudson Valley. The findings are incorporated into the lesson plans developed by the Hudson River Estuary Program, and some are also used in ongoing research projects.
Kids from PS3 who came to Pier 45 this morning exhibited some impressive familiarity with biological terms and methods, as some had been part of the event before this year. They were between 6 and 8 years old and were measuring PH, salinity, and oxygen levels, measurements put into perspective with the effects of their variations for aquatic life. Many groups also collect core samples of river bottom mud for analysis.