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students smile with their presentation at a science exhibition
November 18, 2022

What’s in your Watershed Public Exhibition

Ninth graders put on the first night of their “What’s in your watershed?” public exhibition Thursday, November 17, at Ames High School. Students did hands-on research in watersheds in the local area.

“About eight weeks ago we brought this project to students where we wanted them to investigate their watershed,” Earth and space science (ESS) teacher Kean Roberts said. “We wanted to look at what environmental issues were in the watersheds that surround us. This whole project is looking at figuring out an issue and then figuring out some way that we can solve it. Then, we’ll make those recommendations to the public.”

Students Charvi Chowdareddy, Edyn Cowles, and Radha Chary focused on their idea of an “ideal Ioway Creek” and included a model of a streambank toe. A streambank toe, per their presentation, would “protect streambanks from erosion while providing instream cover for fish using natural materials near and in the creek.”

Cowles and her presentation team were interested in the animal life in a local watershed.

“The first time we went down there I put on waders. I was hands-on and I was very interested in the fish population, the garter snakes, the frogs, the bugs in the water, and I wanted to do something with that,” she said. “Without them, we can’t have the bigger animals like deer, coyotes, bunnies, and birds. We can’t really have any of that without aquatic life.”

Another trio, Avery Wirth, Dayne Hayes, and Nate Ylonen also focused on wildlife and came to the solution of removing invasive species so they no longer pollute Ioway Creek. Fellow student, Eli Cosby, gave his presentation on analyzing soil.

“My main goal throughout this whole project was what soil mixture I can come up with to help water. I was talking to Mr. Reichert and he introduced me to the soil triangle which basically tells you multiple different soil combinations you can use.”

There was a sizable turn out at the exhibition, which doesn’t surprise ESS teacher Collin Reichert.

“I wouldn’t expect anything less than this from Ames,” Reichert said. “Every time we’ve done an event like this Ames turns out and shows up.”

For those that might be considering attending tonight, Reichert shares the importance of hearing the voice of his students that put forth amazing efforts.

“It’s really impressive work,” he said. “It’s what our kids can do. They have a voice in what should happen in our community and that voice should be listened to. This is how we’re going to listen to it.”

If you are interested in attending, students will put on another public exhibition Friday, November 18, 2022 from 5:30-7:30 pm at Ames High.