First Season of Floating Classroom — “Everything it Promised!”
Our first season of the Floating Classroom has wrapped up and was a big hit with young and old alike!
Over 175 people participated in the program including the Laconia Middle School summer aquatics campers, the Libby Boat Museum 2nd graders, Prescott Farm Environmental Education Center’s Teen Trekkers, NH Lakes Program Teen Lake Hosts, locals and visitors. “A good program for any age,” commented Alana and Dennis from Manchester.
“This tour was everything it promised… lots of fun & learning, low stress hands on lab activities and informative lecture about geology and history. Thank you FC crew!” was one of many wonderful comments from participants this summer, and Miriam from Concord stated the program was “fantastic support to her home school curriculum.”
One of the highlights for all participants was the plankton tow. People were amazed to see a variety of tiny little critters moving around in our sample jars. “We swim in that?” and “Do they get stuck in my hair?” were common questions. An under-appreciated form of life, plankton make up the base of the lake’s food chain; eating algae, assimilating nutrients and feeding fish. Jeff Schloss, Water Resource Specialist, UNH Lakes Lay Monitoring program, noted they could be called lake sheep, grazers of fresh water algae!
Kids also loved using the view scopes to watch the secchi disk disappear. A simple black and white circle, the secchi disk is used to measure water clarity. Average readings throughout the summer were 8.5 meters or almost 28 feet. Temperature readings were taken to find the thermocline; the transition layer between the top warm water layer and the bottom cold water layer. The warm upper layer of water was found to be 6 meters deep, with temperatures in the 70’s, while 11 meters down, water temperatures were in the 50’s!
The floating classroom was made possible with funding from the Environmental Education Fund and Nighswander Community Fund of the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation, the Samuel P. Pardoe Foundation, and the following list of sponsors. THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT!
2014 Sponsors and Underwriters:
- Advanced Onsite Solutions, LLC
- Anchor Marine Corp.
- Binnie Media
- Cross Insurance
- Goodhue and Hawkins Navy Yard
- Sanborn’s Auto
- UNH Center for Freshwater Biology
- Christopher P. Williams Architects
- Irwin Automotive Group
- Melcher & Prescott Insurance
- Mill Falls
- NH Ball Bearings, Inc.
- NH Electric Co-op
- RE/Max Bayside
- Steven J. Smith & Associates, Inc.
- Worry Free Property Management and Restoration
Interested in sponsoring this fun and worthwhile program? Underwriters needed for 2015!! To find out more information, please contact us at 581-6632.