A CIESE Collaborative Project

Fall 2007

Letters of Introduction, Photos & Final Reports

Notre Dame High School
Sherman Oaks, CA, USA

Hempfield Education for Life Program Landisville, PA, USA

Notre Dame High School, Sherman Oaks, CA, USA

We are the 10th grade biology class of Notre Dame High School located in Sherman Oaks, California. We are testing for pH, nitrate, phosphate and temperature levels in the L. A. River. The river is unique because it is used for flood control and the majority of the water is run off. The river runs from Canoga park to Long Beach. Our test site is located in Balboa park in Encino. The latitude of our test site is as follows: 34.1.6. The longitude is -118.5. The purpose of our project is to find out if our water source is a good environment for organisms to live in. Our hypothesis is that the pH, nitrate, phosphate and temperature levels are suitable for living organisms.

Final Report

We are testing for pH, nitrate, phosphate and temperature levels in the L. A. River . The river is unique because it is used for flood control and the majority of the water is run off. The river runs from Canoga park to Long Beach . Our test site is located in Balboa park in Encino. The latitude of our test site is as follows: 34.1.6. The longitude is -118.5. The purpose of our project is to find out if our water source is a good environment for organisms to live in. Our hypothesis is that the pH, nitrate, phosphate and temperature levels are suitable for living organisms.

The nitrate data collected by Notre Dame high School were for the most part not like the nitrate collections made by the other schools. Notre Dame's average for phosphate was 1 ppm. The Easton Valley High School 's first test was averaged at about 2.3 ppm and the second test averaged at about 3 ppm. The Rukmini Devi public School tested for 1 ppm, Spokane Valley High School's first test recorded an av erage of .2 ppm but their second test got about .9 ppm, The Hempfield Education for Life Program averaged at about .6 ppm. And lastly the International School of Florence averaged at about .1-.2 ppm.

When comparing the Phosphate values collected from the Los Angeles River with the date collected from the other schools' test sites, the results were, for the most part, not very similar. Our data averaged at about 1.7 ppm. Easton Valley High School 's first test averaged at .2 ppm. Their second test was at about 2.5 ppm. The Rukmini Devi Public School 's first test averaged at 4 ppm. Their second and third tests were at about 4 ppm as well. The Spokane Valley High School 's first test averaged at about .9 ppm, in their second test they averaged at about .9 ppm again. The Hempfield Education for Life Program averaged 7.8 ppm. And finally, the International School of Florence averaged at about 2.5 ppm.

The average water temperature for the Los Angeles ( L.A. ) Riv er was 24ºC. The Eastern Area High School 's test site was at Le High River. They got 18ºC. The Spokane Valley High School tested at Spokane River . For both of their readings, they got 8ºC. The Hempfield Education for Life Program tested at Lancaster Junction Trail Stream. They got 20ºC. The second reading for Eastern Area High School at Bushkills Creek was 8ºC. And finally, the International School of Florence got 18ºC while testing at the Arno River .

The pH readings that we got were very similar to the readings of the other school's testing at a river. Our average pH level was 7.9. The Eastern Area High School , who tested at Le High River, got 7.0 for their first reading. Their second reading was taken at Bushkills Creek and got 8.0. The Spokane Valley High School tested at Spokane River . They got 7.8 and 7.7 for their two readings. The Hempfield Education for Life Program tested at Lancaster Junction Trail Stream. They got a pH reading of 8.0. Lastly, the Internat ional School of Florence got a reading of 7.9 when they tested at the Arno River .

Over the seven week period, we recieved an average of 24.25 degrees C as our temperature. For pH we recorded 7.9. Over the seven weeks of testing we got 1.7 ppm for the nitrates and got 1 ppm for the phospahtes.

In conclusion we think the reason why our data was different from the data collected from other schools was for several reasons. The first reason why we thought that the data was different was because of the uses of the water at the testing sites. In the Los Angeles River , there is much sewage and polluted water because its is a flood control system and it receives much of the city run off from Los Angeles . However at our testing site, the water has just passed through a water ttreatment area. This is the main reason we believe that the water at our test site is suitable for sustaining life. Another very prominent reasons why the different testing sites recieved diff erent results is many of these testing sites are in different biomes. For example, Spokane Washington is in the taiga biome, Rukmini Devi is in the tundra biome, and our testing site is in a desert biome. These reasons are evidence enough to explain for the differences.

As a class we learned very much from this experience. We all learned about the different components of water quality and how to test for them. We also learned a lot about the Los Angeles River : its orign, uses, and location. FInally we all learned about how to collaborate well in a group where there are deadlines. It was hard at first but as the project progressed we all learned each other's strengths and weaknesses and how to work well together. If we have done this project differently we would have liked to test in other areas of the Los Angeles River and we would have performed more water quality tests.

Thanks

Coach Kramer's 3rd period Biology class

See a PowerPoint presentation created by our class for this project.

Hempfield Education for Life Program, Landisville, PA, USA

We are the students of the H.E.L. P. (Hempfield Education for Life Program) located at the Rohrerstown Education Center (40:3:10 N and 76:21:35 W). We are part of the Hempfield School District located in Lancaster County Pennsylvania. We are 142 kilometers from Washington D.C. and 218 kilometers from New York City . Our school is comprised of students in grades 7 through 12. All students that attend our program share a common goal and that goal is to successfully complete high school in a non-traditional setting. Many of the students here have struggled with attendance, motivation and behavior. As part of our curriculum, we are required to perform service learning. Part of our Service Learning curriculum includes water testing. We are required to learn why testing water is important, we must learn how to correctly test water, and we must analyze the data from testing water.
Our class goes out once a month and tests three locations: Lancaster Junction Trail stream, t he stream flowing under the bridge at Mill Road and the stream near Landisville Primary Center . We will be making general observations and testing the water for DO level, pH level, temperature, nitrates, turbidity and phosphates. The testing is done on the second Wednesday of every month.

Hypothesis:
Location #1: Lancaster Junction Trail: We believe we will find high levels of nitrates in the water due to point source pollution from surrounding farmland.

Location #2: Bridge Mill Road : We believe the dissolved oxygen at this site will be low due to pollution caused by surrounding businesses.

Location #3: Landisville Primary Center : We believe the dissolved oxygen at this site will be low due to the fact that the water is continuously exposed to sunlight

Final Report

After reviewing the data from our school and the data provided by the other schools, we learned that there were in fact some predomiant similarities such as pH level. In particular, Spokane , Florence and Easton had a pH level very close to the pH we had. This showed us that all four locations were a weak base. Once we finsihed looking at that data we wondered if the other areas contained limestone. We know that limestone greatly influences the pH at our test site.

We then focused on our data to see if we were able to prove our hypothesis correct. The nitrate level at the Lancaster Junction Trail was 7.8ppm. This was very high compared to all the other recorded data; however it does prove our hypothesis correct. As we stated, we believed that the nitrate level would be high at the location due to point source pollution.
In the future, this test could be improved if we possibly tested the water at various locations along the stream. In addition, we should investigate t he actual pollutants entering the stream and ways to prevent this.

Overall, the experience has given our class a new appreciation for both our local and global environment. It also helped us improve in our communication skills, technology skills and enhanced our appreciation for scientific exploration and investigation. Not to mention, it was fun!

 

Rukmini Devi Public School - Delhi, Delhi, India

Greetings to all !

We are grade 8 students from Rukmini Devi Public School, located in the capital city-Delhi of India (Latitude: 28.4° N and Longitude: 77.2° E). Our country portrays a landscape of vibrant cultural heritage and spiritual mysticism. Its rich customs and traditions bind its people together. So despite so much of diversity, we live side by side in harmony. We love to celebrate almost every occasion and are good host.

Our school is a Senior Secondary School that caters to the classes pre-primary to higher secondary and age group ranging from 4- 17 years, with the strength of approximate 2000 students. Students here are exposed to the physical, intellectual, socio-cultural, emotional and spiritual learning. We make up a strong bond with our teachers and classmates.

School has rich infrastructure with state-of-the-art facilities and provides us with all modern amenities such as Library; Gymnasium; Science Park; Laboratories- Science La bs, Social Science Lab, Mathematics Lab, Language Lab, Robotics Lab; Auditorium; Technology Based Teaching Labs/Rooms; Computer Literacy Labs; IT Lab. We are provided with many choices to develop our mental faculties beyond academics such as Fine Arts- Dance (Classical & Folk), Music (Vocal & Instrumental), Painting/Craft, Sculpture or preparing Electronic & Electrical Gadgets, Photography, Tailoring and Embroidery, Interior Decoration and Dramatics; Sports- Athletics, Basketball, Handball, Kho-Kho, Volley Ball, Badminton, Table Tennis, Swimming etc.

We have been working on various collaborative programs/projects from last few years. It is a real fun to compare the water quality of our local lake with other fresh water sources around the world and we are very enthusiastic to participate in this project. About 20 students of age group 12 to 14 are participating in this project.

The water body we have chosen is Naini Lake which is a lake that ru ns in Model Town area of our city. As the color of this lake is deep green and it sustains many living organisms like swans, ducks, fishes etc, so our first hypothesis is that this water is clean and is good environment for organisms to survive. Our second hypothesis is that The water in the lakes all over the world provides an appropriate environment for organisms to survive". After performing series of tests we would come to know about the cleanliness of water in our lake and also of all over the world. Hoping to have an informative and interesting experience while working on the project - Global Water Sampling Project.

Thank you

Final Report

We are grade 8 students from Rukmini Devi Public School, located in the capital city-Delhi of India (Latitude: 28.4° N and Longitude: 77.2° E) and doing this project as part of our subject Collaborative Projects in our school.

It's a nice saying
"It Cleanses the Body; It Quenches the Thirst; It's All Natural -- Think of Water First."

Water is Essential for Life. It covers 71% of the earth's surface and makes up 65 % of our bodies. Everyone needs clean water-- to drink, cook and many other important activities. If water becomes polluted, it loses its value to us economically and aesthetically, and can become a threat to our health and to the survival of the fish living in it and the wildlife that depends on it.

Ways that humans have affected the quality of the Great Lakes water over the centuries include sewage disposal, industrial discharge of chemical wastes and byproducts, toxic contamination through heavy metals and pesticides, r unoff from agriculture and urbanization.

The water body we have chosen is Naini Lake which is a lake that runs in Model Town area of our city. It was a bright sunny day and absolutely appropriate for water sampling as the day before also the weather conditions were the same.

The color of water is dark green due to plants and algae in water and its odor is fishy. The lake does not seem to be polluted as it supports many living organisms like algae, swans and ducks so our first hypothesis was that this water is clean and is good environment for organisms to survive.

On comparing our data with given facts and figures we have found that our hypothesis is almost correct as we found that the content of pH, nitrates and phosphates was appropriate but content of dissolved oxygen was found to be extremely low.

Our second hypothesis was that The water in the lakes all over the world provides an appropriate environment for organisms to survive". We are glad this hypothesis is correct as on comparing and analyzing our data we found that the contents of nitrates, pH, and phosphates, dissolved oxygen were appropriate for the organisms to survive. This project has helped us to enhance our scientific and analytical ability by conducting the experiments and carrying out some of important conversions.

At last we would just like to conclude by saying that

Join the revolution
Avoid the retribution
Make a resolution
to stop the Water Pollution

Here are few pictures of students performing the water sampling tests:



Spokane Valley High School, Spokane Valley, WA, USA

We are from Spokane Valley High School, located in Spokane Valley, WA at 47° 40'31.43N and 117 17'03.29W. Our school is an alternative school with about 240 students that allows kids from different schools and districts to cooperate in smaller classes and learn to participate in groups. Just north of our school is the Spokane River , and that is where our class took the water samples (47° 40'27.57 N and 177° 12'02.42W). Our sampling site is upstream of most of the city of Spokane Valley and Spokane . The Spokane River is approximately 100 mi long, beginning in northern Idaho 's Coeur d'Alene Lake and connecting to the Columbia River . There is about 34 million gallons of storm sewer that are drained directly into the Spokane River every day in the summer. In 2002 the Environmental Protection Agency issued a Superfund cleanup plan for the Spokane River-Lake Coeur d'Alene basin. In 2004 it was named number six on American Rivers list of the most endangered rivers in the U S. In our area the river is used for recreation like water sports and fishing but it is mainly used for hydroelectric power production. We will be comparing our data with other schools in the US and in other countries.