A CIESE Collaborative Project

Letters of Introduction

Mason County Eastern High School WWP Community Middle School
Felix Varela Senior High School  -  Ms. Escobar Felix Varela Senior High School - Ms. Casal
Rowan County High School Louise R. Johnson Middle School
Gwynn Park Middle School  

Mason County Eastern High School

Our school is in a small village called Custer which is located in Michigan, it is about 15 miles east of Ludington. The school name is Mason County Eastern High School. It is located in Mason County, hence the schools name. Our community is the home to a number of family farms. As a matter of fact, you can see one farm from the school. The elevation level in Custer is 698 feet or 212.7504 meters above sea level. Our latitude is 43.952 N and our longitude is 86.219 W.  Mr. Shoups applied science class includes students from grades 10 through 12. This class is mainly project orientated, we have a
lot of research projects that we have done this year. Our school has a lot of sports teams including: Girls and boys basketball, cross-country, track and field, softball, baseball, cheerleading and volleyball. Which are all really good programs. We just added pole vault to our track team this year after not having it for a number of years. Our softball team won the Division IV State Championship last summer.

WWP Community Middle School

Community Middle School is located in Plainsboro, NJ, just 2 miles from Princeton University.  Our school has 1000 students in grades 6, 7, 8. Latitude is 40N and Longitude is 74W, located in the Hightstown Quad on the USGS Topo Map. Our altitude is 80 feet above sea level, hence the name - Plainsboro. Our middle school students are testing the water behind the school to check its chemical and physical characteristics. Since NJ is currently experiencing a severe drought, it is an opportune time to learn more about the health of this stream. The playing fields surrounding the school are very popular with Canadian geese, so the students hypothesized that the large goose population would pollute the water with bacteria. The stream is thought to be relatively healthy, and the students are anxious to collect data to test their hypothesis.

Felix Varela Senior High School  -  Ms. Escobar

Greeting from Sunny Miami,
Saludos desde Miami la cuidad del Sol,

Felix Varela Senior High School is located in unincorporated Miami-Dade County. Our school is located at latitude 25:40:36.912 N and longitude 80:26:32.345 W in the subdivision of West Kendall know as the Hammocks. Our school is built on land that was traditionally a wetland area. The school is only two years old and has students in grades 9-11. It was built for 2,600 students and now houses 3,700. Next year we will have 9-12 grades and expect to reach an enrollment of 5,000. Where the kids will go nobody knows.

We are ninth grade students taking a BCC Earth and Space course. We are in the BCC (bilingual content curriculum) course because we are new to the United States and are learning English our first language or home language is Spanish. We collectively represent the countries of Argentina, Colombia, Chile, Cuba, Ecuador, El Salvador Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Peru, Spain, and Venezuela making our class very diverse in culture and dialects. We will be testing water samples from a nearby canal that borders the entire perimeter of Everglades National Park. This park is undergoing many efforts to restore the quality, quantity and timing of the water flow that all South Floridians depend on.

Three of our classes will monitor water quality at three different stops along the perimeter. The areas around canal L-31 are greatly impacted by humans and it is the consensus of all three classes that the water test will indicate poor water quality. We look forward to sharing our findings with you.


Felix Varela Senior High School - Ms. Casal

May 8, 2002
Ladies and Gentlemen:

We are currently students attending Felix Varela Senior High School. The school has been open for two years and at this time have freshmen, sophomores, and juniors. The mascot that represents our pride is the viper. Here are Felix Varela, we have an extensive curriculum in which we offer great courses, electives, and academies for different careers that our students choose to pursue. The environment is pleasant and we have a multicultural student body that includes over fifty different nationalities.

Felix Varela Senior High is located in the Hammocks. The Hammocks is a single-family home community that has a diverse population and is extremely peaceful. Our community offers many seasonal activities for its members, such as the celebration of the independence of the United States in July and the haunted house in October.

Attending the chemistry class this year, which consists of a universal environment that totals approximately forty hard working students in each class and most of which are dedicated, the experience and knowledge has further grown and changed our views on life. Teresa Casal, the head coordinator and teacher of Chemistry at Felix Varela Senior High School, Region VI, teaches this class.

Our classrooms environment is warm and comfortable as well as being exciting. Each of the students in this class works hard with each other to complete various classroom activities such as labs and educational projects. For instance, some of the activities that have taken place are: The flame test lab and The construction of a hot air balloon.

Our school is located in the South of Florida where there is a remarkable tropical climate that lends itself to agriculture. Most of the vegetation is grown in Homestead where all the farming is done. In this area there are many fair beaches, which are a popular tourist attraction. We are also located near the Everglades National Park, which is a land with an extensive amount of cypress swamps, hardwood hammocks, saw grass prairies, and pinelands. It is a subtropical preserve that contains a variety of plants and animals. The plant life is both temperate and tropical and there is a wide variety of birds inhabiting this area. Such birds include the great blue heron, the wood stork, and egrets. It is the only place in the world where alligators and crocodiles coexist.

Although this land is filled with animal and plant life it has suffered many damages. For more than a decade people have questioned how it will be repaired. The Everglades has been reduced to half its original size due to the construction of new homes. This has caused many of the species to be added to the endangered list. The purpose of this water restoration project is to refill the beauty and uniqueness of this preserve. This project is said to be the most expensive ecosystem restoration project ever. The plan calls for many of the canals to be refilled. Much water retention must be torn down along with building marshes to filter water.  Approximately, 1.6 billion gallons of water will be stored.

Thank you for your time and we hope that this letter has been informational and helpful in explaining The Global Water Sampling Project. We hope to let others view what the real situation were all victims of, and take further action.

Students of Chemistry at FVSH

Rowan County High School

Rowan County High School is located in the hills of Eastern Kentucky. Rowan County is the home of Morehead State University.  We are fortunate enough to have an extensive watershed that includes many wetland areas and streams that run into the Licking River and Cave Run Lake. The Licking River then merges with the Ohio River, which is located approximately 75 miles North of Rowan County.
The Science Club at Rowan County High School will be involved in testing the water from a creek on Bullfork Rd. (N 37o00.000, W  084o22.500'). Due to the livestock located along the creek, students hypothesize that coliform levels will be high.  Our club consists of 22 students, grades 9-12. The club is mostly involved in community service programs such as the Earth Day Cleanup and Adopt-a-Highway Program. We are very excited to be part of this water testing program and are looking forward to reading the results from other schools around the globe. 

Louise R. Johnson Middle School

Louise R. Johnson Middle school is a 6-8 magnet middle school located in Bradenton Florida. We are about 12 miles from the Gulf of Mexico just south of Tampa Bay. Our school population is diverse. We have been doing water testing of our schools retention pond for 6 years and also been testing local area rivers. This year our focus was the Manatee River Watershed. About 100 8th grade students were involved in this project. A summary of our project follows.
The Manatee River Project was developed to provide students the opportunity to be involved in scientific research that is educational, career oriented, and would benefit the environment as well as the community. As part of this project students learned about the Manatee River watershed and the importance of protecting it. They also learned how to conduct water quality tests that would evaluate the water at different locations. The study included a comprehensive water analysis that tested for various parameters such as temperature, dissolved oxygen, ammonia, phosphate, pH, salinity, turbidity, nitrates, and alkalinity. The three locations chosen for testing were DeSoto National Memorial( 27 degrees 31'25'' North Lat and 82 degrees 38.48 West Long) which
is at the mouth of the river, Lake Manatee (27 degrees 28'30'' Lat and 82 degrees 21'34''long)the source of drinking water for residents of Manatee County and Rye Wilderness Park (27 degrees 30'48'' lat and 82 degrees 22'15'' long) which is between the other locations. The funding for this project was provided by Southwest Florida Water Management District through their SPLASH mini-grant program. Experts who provided technical assistance were from the Manatee County Environmental Management Department. 

Gwynn Park Middle School

The name of our school is Gwynn Park Middle. It is located in Brandywine, which is in Prince George's County, Maryland.  Gwynn Park Middle School is a Science, Math, and Technology School under the Magnet Program in the county. Our mascot is the 'yellow jacket'. Our principal is Ms. Janice Briscoe. Our school is always about the business of education which is why we have taken this project very serious.

Our community is much like the country, meaning it is surrounded by trees and is mainly flat land. In the state of Maryland, there are many rivers. Two of the most well known rivers in our vicinity are the Patuxent and Potomac Rivers. One of the most important bodies of water in the North to mid eastern states is the Chesapeake Bay. Our community has tried and done several things to protect the Bay. We believe that cleaning our water is vital to the well being of the environment.

For our hypothesis, we predict that most of the water that is consumed by humans will have data that is similar because all human beings need the same kind of water to survive.


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