The Wrack

The Wrack is the Wells Reserve blog, our collective logbook on the web.

Exploring Estuaries

Posted by | November 10, 2005

Sixty-six second graders from South Berwick are out on the trails today, split into groups with six Wells Reserve docents. It's cool and gray, but most of them are prepared for their couple of hours in the woods, along the salt marsh, and on the beach.

Most Exploring Estuaries classes are from the third, fourth, or fifth grades, typically one grade per school. Each year, in spring and fall, about a thousand kids from dozens of towns in southern Maine, seacoast New Hampshire, and northeastern Massachusetts come to the Wells Reserve for Exploring Estuaries.

Site-based, hands-on learning has great advantages. These children take the water samples, handle the hydrometer, take a reading with the refractometer. They see the fish, hear the birds, taste the salt air, touch the trees, smell the growth and decay that permeate ecological systems.

They play games and work with models, view exhibits and make discoveries all their own. They learn from docents who volunteer here simply to share their love of nature and to encourage youngsters to become thoughtful stewards.

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