By DANI BARKEY
Chief Accountability Officer, Warsaw Community Schools
Biology students from Lakeview Middle School conducted both chemical and macro-invertebrate water tests at Cherry Creek in Winona Lake on Sept. 24.
A well balanced and functioning biological community is one of the best indicators of the health of Cherry Creek, which is the main tributary into Winona Lake. Aquatic macro-invertebrates live in water for at least part of their life cycle.
In addition to the macro-invertebrate tests, the students conducted chemical tests The students tested for nitrates, pH, oxygen levels, turbidity and others. The on-site testing enhanced and reinforced the ecology standards the students have been learning.
According to Jon Lippe, Lakeview Principal, “Every grade level has a stake in improving STEM education. Inspiring all students to be accomplished in math and science will help them to be productive in a technology based society. We also hope to prepare the next generation of STEM professionals to ensure our overall success as an educational community.”
Lakeview teacher Mark McCollom says the macro-invertebrate tests his students conducted, “…
turned out to be in the ‘excellent’ category for biodiversity.” This means that the water quality is very high. Chemical tests also indicated that the water quality was in the “good” range.
He went on to say, “The learning experience gave students a great frame of reference as to what scientists actually do. As students learn about ecology in the classroom they can reflect on the hands-on experience they had at Cherry Creek which brings relevance to their learning.”