Watershed 101 with Cedarwood Waldorf students

Not everyone is pictured above, but we had a great, COVID-safe crowd of students, siblings, and parents!

Starting last fall, we have been offering our Watershed 101 Workshop programming to online classrooms. We were connected to Cedarwood Waldorf’s teacher by one of the students’ grandparent, a watershed resident who tuned into our online workshop offering last fall. We’ve had a great time joining Cedarwood Waldorf’s 4th grade classroom for a few presentations!

Our first presentation focused on fish in the Tryon Creek watershed. We introduced students to some of the fish species in the PNW: Chinook and coho salmon, steelhead, cutthroat trout, and Pacific lamprey, including an overview of their habitat needs at different life cycles. We discussed the importance of salmon and provided an introduction to fish passage barriers.
Our second presentation focused on native plants and pollinators. We included several things that can be done at home to support pollinators. We explained the connections between plants and wildlife, and how the decline in backyard birds is linked to non-native plants. It was great to connect with students, who were engrossed by the photos, eager to share their connections with nature, and a joy to spend time with (albeit virtually!). We’re planning to wrap up with a third presentation on watersheds and green infrastructure.

Two families in Cedarwoods’ classrooms live in the watershed, and we were able to purchase native plants for both of these homes. We gathered with a few classrooms’ families for an in-person planting party to install the plants on the first really warm, sunny day late last month. With moral support from goats Peanut, Pretzel, and Popcorn, it was a fun way to spend the weekend and host an in-person volunteer event to round out our online Watershed 101 presentations. 

Goats offered moral support during the work party 🙂
An ensatina salamander was found burrowed in the leaf litter put on plants to keep them insulated over the winter (our work party was postponed due to late-fall COVID restrictions)

Our Watershed 101 Workshop program is funded by the City of Portland’s Community Watershed Stewardship Program.