Local elementary students learn everything about H2O at Water Awareness Festival

By Seth Ratliff; Local News 8

IDAHO FALLS, Idaho (KIFI) – Organized mayhem at Tautphaus Park as fifth and sixth graders gather for the Water Awareness Week Festival. The event was put on by the Department of Environmental Quality to teach kids the importance of water while having an explosive good time.

“The hopes is that they can they can see how fun science is,” DEQ scientist Rick Jensen said. “Understanding the special properties that water has and that it really is a special resource and worth preserving.”

The festival included presentations and activities from the National Weather Service, Idaho Departments of Environmental Quality, Water Resources, and Fish & Game and more.

“It’s really effective for us to come and  reach a lot of kids at once…” Fish and Game spokesman Jamer Brower said. “…which is, you know, a little chaotic, but really fun at the same time.”

Students participated in more than 25 different activities where they could play games, do arts and crafts or learn how water plays a role in their environment. More than 1,800 students participated in the past week.

On a sunny day like Thursday, teachers said they were glad to get their students outside and engaged as they learn everything there is to know about water.

“It’s always so nice to have  in a different environment where they get to learn from other people than just their teachers all day,” fifth grade teacher Bryanna Moore said. “They get to have  other people teach them who are experts in this field. Especially since water cycle is one of our fifth grade standards and they get to learn so much about it.”

A lesson the students seem to have grasped, despite their young age.

Local Westside fifth graders Hartley and Philip told us they feel like people pollute more than they thought. And both boys want to change that.

“I’m going to stop drinking out of plastic bottles,” Philip told us.

“If I’m hiking when I’m camping, I’m gonna pick up any trash I see,” Hartley said.

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