The River Mile
The River Mile is a network of educators, students, resource managers, scientists and environmental educators in the Columbia River Watershed sharing what they know and learn about the Columbia River Watershed and sharing best practices, lessons learned, examples of participation, links to resources and collecting and sharing real world scientific data. It is a participant driven approach to learning, researching and exploring the watershed health of the Columbia River. Kindergarten through 12th grade students are engaged in multi-discipline, multi-level, real world scientific research, data collection and analysis related to the Columbia River Watershed. Schools adopt a one mile section of the Columbia River or tributary and utilize it as their real world laboratory where participants are engaged in the scientific practices of scientists and resource managers.
The River Mile is managed and presented by the National Park Service, Lake Roosevelt National Recreation Area. The River Mile was established during the 2007-08 school year, in-the-field programs were conducted during spring 2008 with seven schools and 289 3rd-12th grade students around Lake Roosevelt National Recreation Area. During the 2013-14 school year more than 1700 students and 67 teachers from 37 schools and hundreds of resource partners, actively participated in the program. As of November 1, 2014 132 teachers and more than 9000 students from 42 school districts have participated in The River Mile in some manner.
The centennial of the National Park Service is 2016. The River Mile is one of the NPS centennial projects. Our goal is to have full availability of The River Mile programs, materials, training and network venues by fall 2015. A large marketing effort will be utilized to recruit network participants from throughout the Columbia River Watershed to participate in the network with the goal of groups being ready to collect and share data in 2016.
The River Mile exemplifies the inclusion of STEM (Science, Technology and Math), as well as the new STEM to STEAM (Science, Technology, Arts and Math) movement as model programs and materials encourage integration of all subjects across all grades K-12.
For more information, please click on the following links or contact our education specialist.