Project WET one of several free workshops for teachers

Published 12:00 am Monday, June 26, 2000

Staff Writer

Every drop of water that is flushed down the toilet will eventually end up in someone’s swimming pool, someone’s cooking pot or someone’s drinking glass. Although it might take a millennium, it will get there.

And, if wastewater is not properly treated, it will return to the water cycle as a pollutant. That is the reason for federal laws that mandate the proper treatment of wastewater. And, that’s just a tidbit of what participants in Project Wet learned Wednesday during a workshop at the Pioneer Museum of Alabama.

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Project WET (Water Education for Teachers) is one of several summer workshops for teachers sponsored by Wiregrass Resource Conservation and Development (RC&D) Council and Choctawhatchee, Pea and Yellow Watershed Management Authority.

Mara Balkcom, a representative of the Wiregrass RC&D Council, said Project Wet is a water education workshop for teachers which correlates fun activities with school curriculum.

Lynn Garris, an educator with the Alabama Department of Conservation conducted the workshop which included presentations, hands-on activities, a writing activity and fun-and-learn games.

Garris said the workshop concluded with an "Amazing Journey." A roll of the dice and the workshop participants were off on a journey with a water molecule.

Every drop of water has been here always; it just takes different forms, Garris said.

The Project WET participants traveled with a water molecule as it journeyed around the water cycle by several different routes. All who participated agreed the day had been fun and very informative.

"We have two workshops planned at Landmark Park in Dothan in July and we wanted to host one here at the Pioneer Museum of Alabama for two reasons," Balkcom said. "First, it is an ideal place for a workshop of this kind and, then, we wanted to introduce the participants to the museum, because of its potential as a destination for field trips and other events."

Fifteen teachers from Pike, Dale, Coffee and Geneva counties participated in the five-hour workshop.

"The teachers who had never visited the Pioneer Museum of Alabama were amazed at what all it has to offer," Balkcom said. "I’m sure they will go back to their schools and share what they have learned about the museum with other teachers."

The summer workshop program offered by the Wiregrass RC&D Council and the watershed management authority includes six other workshops which are:

· Watershed Ed (learn about watersheds, available resources, grant writing and outdoor classroom)

from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m., June 26 at the Pioneer Museum of Alabama, Troy

· Watershed Ed from 9 a.m. until noon, June 27 at New Brockton Farm Complex

· Project WET (Water Education for Teachers) from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. July 10 at Landmark Park in Dothan.

· Project WILD (Everything you ever wanted to know about animals – K-12) from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. July 11, Landmark Park, Dothan.

· Watershed Ed, from 9 a.m. until noon, July 17 at the Agplex in Ozark.

All workshops are free and offer Continuing Education Credits. To register, call Mara Balkcom at 334-774-4523 Ext. 2. Leave name and telephone number