Friday, July 18, 2014

Barton County 4-H Teen Leaders Teach Others About Water Quality

Contact: Elaine Davis, 4-H program assistant
Headquartered in Barton County
Tel: (417) 682-3579

LAMAR, Mo. -- Barton County 4-H Teen Leaders presented the WET project at the Lamar East Primary School to 4th and 5th grade summer school science classes at Wheeler Park during July.

The teen 4-H leaders are beginning a series of new “Teens Teaching Teens” projects.

The WET project is an interactive education project that enables every child to understand and value water, ensuring a sustainable future. During the two sessions the teens presented two programs entitled: “Water Quality? Ask the Bugs!”


This workshop included a bio assessment of a stream by sampling macro invertebrates.  Students objectives were to define the name of macro invertebrates, describe the diversity if the macro invertebrates and them analyze the by learning the process for which macro invertebrate are assessed results were recorded and Pollution Tolerance indexes were determined.

After working through worksheets, the group was able to take samples form Wheeler Park Lake and identify the real Macro invertebrates that were in the simulation kits.  Students identified snails, mayflies, minnows and various macro invertebrates.

Water Crossings, provided students the opportunity to build a raft, boat or flotation device to carry them and their possession across a river.  In the early days of early settlers and explorers water transportation was key to travel.  Each student was provided a bag of supplies including sticks, string, and a passenger to create a floatation device that would simulate crossing a river or tributary.  The device was required to float for 30 seconds.


The mission of Project WET is to reach children, parents, teachers and community members of the world with water education that promotes awareness of water and empowers community action to solve complex water issues. That goal is achieved by publishing water resource education materials, providing training workshop, organizing water festivals and water action activities .This program meets the requirements for MAPP testing for 5th grade students.

4-H Teen leaders Nate Cable, Kelsie Morgan, Allison Hawes, Jackie Neher, and Nathaniel Hawes along with Elaine Davis 4-H program assistant with University of Missouri Extension and Jill Scheidt, agronomy specialist with MU Extension, presented the workshop.


Missouri 4-H is University of Missouri Extension's youth development program. The 4-H program helps to create opportunities for young people to be valued, contributing members of their community. To learn more about 4-H -- the world’s largest youth-serving organization -- and how to get involved locally go online to

Residents of southwest Missouri can contact any of these 4-H youth development specialists for  information: Karla Deaver in Lawrence County at (417) 466-3102; Monica Spittler in Taney County, (417) 546-5531; Bob McNary in Jasper County at (417) 358-2158; Jeremy Elliott-Engel in Newton County at (417) 455-9500 or Velynda Cameron in Polk County at (417) 326-4916.

Nate Cable is working with the students on building a floatation device. A test run leads to making changes for making a successful water crossing.
Students were able to evaluate macro invertebrates from Wheeler Park.
Kelsie Morgan works with her group on the macro invertebrate’s simulation kit.


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