Nature in the City
Save the Rain works with Baltimore Woods, through their Nature in the City program, to provide environmental education to every third-grader in the Syracuse City School District (SCSD). Educators from Baltimore Woods provide “hands-on, minds-on” lessons to students through three separate class sessions. These lessons are integrated with the SCSD science curriculum, and are centered around hands-on water quality and green infrastructure learning.
The first lesson is entitled “Save the Rain” and teaches students about the Onondaga Lake Watershed using an interactive watershed model. This model helps students understand where water goes when it rains and how pollutants impact our watershed, plants and humans. Students also learn about the County’s Save the Rain program and become familiar with the benefits of gray and green infrastructure in the City.
The second lesson, “Creatures of the Deep” introduces students to benthic aquatic macroinvertebrates (otherwise known as small, but visible to the naked eye, organisms without backbones that live around or in the bottom sediments of aquatic environments). Baltimore Woods educators bring in live samples of these creatures and allow students to observe and take note of adaptations that allow them to survive in their environment.
The final lesson, “Green Infrastructure Visit and Stream Exploration,” involves a fieldtrip to Elmwood Park! Students have a chance to explore green and gray infrastructure first-hand before heading out to search for benthic aquatic macroinvertebrates in Furnace Brook. They learn about how these creatures can help us better understand the water quality and how they act as indicators for pollution.
In 2018, the Baltimore Woods team was able to deliver all three lessons to every third grade classroom in the 19 elementary schools in the SCSD (over 1,500 students)! A pre and post-program assessment shows that students feel more empowered to keep Onondaga Lake clean as a result of Nature in the City. This is, of course, the goal of the Save the Rain program!
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museum of science & Technology
The MOST is a key player in delivering interactive science education to people of all ages and abilities in Central New York. Save the Rain has partnered with The MOST to leverage their extensive outreach network to deliver various promotional and outreach programs to the community. Examples include Save the Rain themed demonstrations by MOST science educators, rotations of Save the Rain videos in the Galson Issues Theatre, tabling space for use by Save the Rain staff to promote activities/programs, space for the Green Infrastructure Model Home exhibit, and Connect the Drops messaging on the popular climbing wall.
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Onondaga Earth Corps and Cornell Cooperative Extension
Save the Rain had a goal of planting 8,500 trees in the City of Syracuse by 2018. As part of this program, Save the Rain partnered with Onondaga Earth Corps (OEC) and Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE) to train and hire youth and young adults to lead in planting and maintaining hundreds of trees throughout the City of Syracuse. This program provides job training and employment experience while empowering local youth to be leaders and good stewards of the environment in their community.
OEC and CCE also help to coordinate community tree planting events throughout the Fall and Spring. Be sure to check this website and our social media pages to see what upcoming events we have planned!
OEC also maintains green infrastructure projects located throughout the City.
To learn more about Onondaga Earth Corps and Cornell Cooperative Extension click the button below: