Fourth-graders from Woodburn Elementary work with a scale model of an urban watershed.

Fourth-graders from Woodburn Elementary work with a scale model of an urban watershed, where they learn the importance of trees in preventing flooding. (Danielle Frost/Post-Record)

Posted: October 10, 2016

Fourth-graders spend a day learning about their local watershed and how to protect it

There’s a few rules for the students attending the Columbia River Watershed Festival.

One, don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty. Two, worms are not gross. Three, recycling is crucial.

“The goals of this event are to bring a bunch of fourth-grade students out here to start their year inspired by the watershed and realize the actions they take every day make a difference,” said Jenna Kallestad, education coordinator for Columbia Springs. “At this age, they are still very excited about playing outdoors, but are old enough to take actions to make a difference.”

Kallestad helps organize the festival, which is held in a Clark County park annually. This year, it took place in Capt. William Clark Park in Washougal. It also rotates with visits to Klineline Pond, Vancouver Lake and Lewisville State Park. The festival is in its 25th year and began with a single purpose: Get kids into nature while they are still young enough to appreciate it.

“We bring in a lot of different organizations and all work toward this same goal,” Kallestad said. “The idea is that students who have the opportunity to come out here feel connected to their local watershed. Nature is not in this far away place, it’s right here.”

Read the full story at the Post Record.