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Learning What is in the Water

he Keystone Science School provided DCSM students firsthand experience performing water quality assessments and surveying aquatic macroinvertebrates to check and find environmental health indicators in the aquatic ecosystem.

Keystone, Colorado is more than a mountain town that caters to winter snow skiers and summer hikers.  The outdoorsy destination offers inquiring minds a unique opportunity to gain experience and learn within its picturesque backdrop. 

During a three-day retreat to Keystone Science School, DCS Montessori (DCSM) middle school students played active roles as scientists, conducting aquatic ecology field studies using chemical, biological and physical water testing.  

Having the opportunity to study plants and animals living in streams helped the students understand how living organisms in aquatic ecosystems are not only connected, but also how easily the system can be disrupted by pollution and environmental factors.  

The program allowed students to think critically about how their findings are indicators of environmental health, how humans directly affect the environment, and what steps people can take to change behavior.  

DCSM students exploring and conducting experiments with water.

 By Julie Matuszewski; photo courtesy of Rebecca Jones, DCS Montessori 



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