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Ms. Sutcliffe’s Classroom Edit display name

  • President Thomas Jefferson Elementary School
  • Honolulu, HI
  • More than half of students from low‑income households

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The 3rd and 5th grade students will be partnering with the Ala Wai Watershed to help clean a canal that is in our school's backyard. The students were tasked with piloting a solution that is successfully used in Japan to clean waterways! The students began by observing the canal across the street from our school and noticed that is was completed polluted and full of sludge. Sadly, they saw many organisms such as fish and crabs floating dead in the water. They decided that something needed to be done! Students will be creating "Genki Balls" made out of micro-organisms, soil, molasses, and rice bran. The micro-organisms are "good" bacteria that feed off of the molasses and bran and break down the sludge. This canal was home to a variety of living things and was once swimmable and fishable. The majority of our students live along this polluted canal and would love to see it used to it's potential. After going through the scientific process and arriving at this solution, students will make 500 genki balls to be thrown into our canal's 'test site'. Students will collect data on water quality, clarity, and sludge reduction over the course of a few months (November - May). By May, we hope to have a clean, clear and thriving canal!

About my class

The 3rd and 5th grade students will be partnering with the Ala Wai Watershed to help clean a canal that is in our school's backyard. The students were tasked with piloting a solution that is successfully used in Japan to clean waterways! The students began by observing the canal across the street from our school and noticed that is was completed polluted and full of sludge. Sadly, they saw many organisms such as fish and crabs floating dead in the water. They decided that something needed to be done! Students will be creating "Genki Balls" made out of micro-organisms, soil, molasses, and rice bran. The micro-organisms are "good" bacteria that feed off of the molasses and bran and break down the sludge. This canal was home to a variety of living things and was once swimmable and fishable. The majority of our students live along this polluted canal and would love to see it used to it's potential. After going through the scientific process and arriving at this solution, students will make 500 genki balls to be thrown into our canal's 'test site'. Students will collect data on water quality, clarity, and sludge reduction over the course of a few months (November - May). By May, we hope to have a clean, clear and thriving canal!

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