Lecia Schall, OLWC 2014 Intern

Winter greetings from Lecia Schall, the current intern for the Oswego Lake Watershed council. I am honored to have the opportunity to join in the commitment towards educating some of the younger members of the Lake Oswego community, on watershed issues.  As both a teacher for several decades and as a perpetual student, I realize how important it is to make learning relevant and rewarding to young people.  I am also a firm believer in place-based education and consequently people knowing their “watershed-address”.  Therefore, it is exciting to be allowed to continue the educational project that was initiated in 2012 among such local stakeholders as The City of Lake Oswego, Portland State Center for Science Education, and the Lake Oswego School District.  As a MST Graduate Student at PSU’s Center for Science Education, it is rewarding to be able to apply my studies to this project.

As a native Oregonian, I have been surrounded by water and have explored many watersheds, both regional and in my backyard.  This love of the water cycle and the landforms involved is one of the reasons I became involved with the OSU Extension Department’s Master Naturalist Program for the Oregon Coast and the Willamette Valley. It was through this program that I began to formally study watersheds. Through my associations with the Boy Scouts, I have also had the extreme pain and pleasure of riding horseback across the Cascades and their associated watersheds, including that of the Clackamas River.  This experience put Lewis and Clark’s watershed explorations only partially into perspective.  For the record, I was in awe of Lewis and Clark even before pursuing my undergraduate Education degree at Lewis and Clark College in Portland.

My current role as intern is to assist the Sixth Grade Science Teachers with the implementation of the Oswego Lake Watershed Engineering Design Unit (OLWEDU) designed by PSU colleagues and piloted in the spring of 2013.  This month-long curriculum focuses on local Stormwater issues while engaging the students in the practices of the Engineering Design Process.  Now in its second year of implementation, we hope to tailor the curriculum to the schools’ and community’s needs.  The OLWEDU is also designed to introduce the students and teachers to the principles of The Next Generation Science Standards, which will be implemented in the near future.  Eventually the curriculum will be fully aligned with the NGSS.  Until then the local students will be ahead of their peers in their knowledge of basic Engineering Design Processes, Stormwater management and mitigation, and broader watershed issues.  What an opportunity for everyone involved!

CLICK on the links to the left to open Lecia Schall's project reports2013 Oswego Lake Watershed 6th Grade Engineering Design Unit Reports