Friends of the Petaluma River (FOPR) is seeking funding to bring the Watershed Classroom program to a more diverse group of students. The Watershed Classroom is a hands-on, standards-based, outdoor, environmental literacy program founded by Friends of the Petaluma River (FOPR). Now in its eighth year of implementation, the program provides curriculum and instruction about the Petaluma Watershed to educate students on how they are connected to their local environment, how their decisions affect their local environment and inspire stewardship of the Petaluma Watershed. To date, over 7,600 students have participated, learning about the Petaluma Watershed and increasing student-driven stewardship. As part of the program, high school and middle school students are invited to create and submit Public Service Announcements (PSAs) regarding a topic affecting local water quality. Last year over 200 students submitted 1-minute videos educating the community about micro plastics in local waterways and solutions to improve the problem.
FOPR is seeking funding to expand our reach into underserved schools and populations. There are three components to this project:
– Conduct coordinated outreach and develop teacher relationships to expand Watershed Classroom into schools with higher rates of disadvantaged students
– Develop and implement culturally relevant curriculum based on the Petaluma Watershed
– Promote bilingual water quality PSA contest in middle and high schools and bilingual water quality poster contest in elementary schools
This project will increase access to outdoor, environmental education with a focus on the Petaluma Watershed. Students participating will gain an appreciation of the Petaluma River and attain the skills to protect it. Students will attain a deeper understanding of the Petaluma Watershed as a system, how their lives are interconnected with the local environment and learn about issues affecting the health of the Watershed through outdoor learning.