Free Water Ecology and Engineering Field Trips, a program of NYC H2O, educates and inspires New York’s youth about the incredible NYC water system. Launched in 2014, field trips are offered to public schools in response to low youth engagement in environmental science and physical activity. Last year NYC H2O offered 141 field trips to over 3,900 students in grades 2 through 12. Field trips bring students to sites in all five boroughs, including: Lemon Creek, Plumb Beach, Ridgewood Reservoir, Silver Lake, Baisley Pond High Bridge, Central Park Reservoir, and Jerome Park Reservoir.
On field trips to historic reservoirs, we show how trees protect reservoirs in city parks and watersheds. We also teach students how water from the Catskills flows to New York City by gravity. At beach sites and wetland habitats, students explore and identify marine creatures such as oysters and horseshoe crabs. Students learn about tides, water absorption and storm surges and how shoreline areas help protect neighborhoods from major flooding.
Most of our students come from underserved schools that lack opportunities to explore natural areas. Our Water Ecology and Engineering Field Trips provide STEM education and place-based learning entirely free of charge. NYC H2O believes that teaching children at inspiring water infrastructure sites helps advance curiosity about the world around them.
With the Awesome award, NYC H2O will hire and train two new guides and will be able to expand to 180 field trips to 120 schools, reaching 5,000 students across NYC. They will also add a new site, the Jamaica Bay National Wildlife Refuge, in partnership with the National Parks Service.
We love this project because of its focus on science, water ecology, and environmental awareness, and our ability to make a difference in students’ lives by providing more free field trips. Plus they use a giant map during field trips so students can track where their neighborhood water comes from!
Funded by New York City, NY (March 2017)