It was a busy week as Friends School of Minnesota 5th and 6th graders headed out on their second River Trip. We returned to Fort Snelling State Park on Friday, October 30 for a special event organized by the National Park Service, Minnesota State Parks, and Will Steger Foundation (now called the Climate Generation).

The topic was climate change and the students participated in the following activities:

Introduction to park and activities – included river/ecological significance and partner parks within the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area

Activity #1: Collected phenological data at Ft Snelling State Park and hiked along Minnesota river to observe changes at this time of year.

Activity #2: Collected and analyzed weather data from weather stations and compared it to climate norms. Used thermometers, anemometers, Beaufort wind scales, barometric pressure gauges, and an internet link to a buoy in the river measuring river flow.

Activity #3: Conducted a service project pulling buckthorn in the park. Used giant buckthorn wrenches to pull larger trees.

Wrap up – reviewed data collected and key ideas learned.

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Kris Bennett, Math Teacher, Friends School of Minnesota

read about the 1st trip of the year: Big River Journey 2015