Postcards from the Watershed

designed for the NYC and NYC Watersheds Trout in the Classroom program
conceived by Lilli Ayvazian, NYC area TIC Coordinator
and the NYC DEP Education Team

Objective:
    To engage families and friends in critical learning about where NYC drinking water comes from and why it’s important to protect our water resources.

Background: 
    Raising Trout in the classroom provides many opportunities for learning and also creates memorable experiences.  Families and friends of students often hear stories about the program and some even participate in caring for the trout.  
    Postcards provide a tool for capturing the information that students have gained during the trout release field day and sharing it with friends.  Often, the postcards are preserved and remain as a reminder of their experience raising and releasing trout into the watersheds that provide NYC’s drinking water.

Materials:
blank postcards, colored pencils, markers, watercolors, crayons, pens, pencils, postcard stamps, an addresses of a family members.

Procedure:

  1. After releasing trout and spending some time in nature ask students to create a postcard influenced by their experience and the outdoors.  Students can paint or draw a landscape, trace or make a print of a natural object they have found or design the postcard in any way.
  2. Ask students to write a small paragraph about thier experiences throught the day and fill in the appropriate "to" and "from" addresses
  3. Add a postcard stamp and mail from a mailbox or post office near your release site.


Wrap-up:

    In small groups or as a class, have students summarize what they wrote home and how they think their families will react to the note.

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