Leaf Pack Connects Students with Nature

300 244 Stroud Water Research Center

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 12, 2013

Diane Huskinson, Stroud™ Water Research Center

Stroud Water Research Center partners with National Wildlife Federation to provide classrooms with powerful stream and water testing tool

Avondale, Pa. – A partnership between Stroud Water Research Center (the Center) and National Wildlife Federation (NWF) is helping more students and teachers connect with nature and investigate their local stream ecosystems using the Leaf Pack Experiment Stream Ecology Kit.

Developed by the Center, the Leaf Pack Experiment Stream Ecology Kit is a hands-on scientific stream-testing kit that measures the numbers and kinds of insects and other invertebrates in streams to determine overall water quality. It enables schoolchildren to explore nature as they learn about stream ecology and how to monitor their local freshwater sources.

“Students have an innate sense of curiosity about and desire to explore the natural world,” said Kevin Coyle, vice president of education at National Wildlife Federation. “The Leaf Pack Experiment encourages students to go outside and explore the streams in their backyard, learning as they go about the health of their local environment. It’s a terrific educational tool for schools and families.”

The Leaf Pack Experiment involves creating a retrievable pack of dry leaves in a mesh bag, placing the pack in the stream for three to four weeks, examining the pack in the classroom and discovering and counting the different types of aquatic insects that, in turn, help indicate stream health. After conducting their own Leaf Pack Experiment, schools share data through the Leaf Pack Network®. These data shed light on the important connection between streamside forests and the ecology of rivers and streams.

“The Leaf Pack Experiment is an exciting way to promote better stewardship of watersheds by engaging students and the lay public in the issue of how land use affects aquatic systems and water quality,” said Bern Sweeney, director and president of Stroud Water Research Center.

To purchase a Leaf Pack Experiment Stream Ecology Kit for your school or to gift one, visit the Leaf Pack Network website.

Stroud™ Water Research Center advances knowledge and stewardship of fresh water through research, education, and global outreach and to help businesses, landowners, policymakers, and individuals make informed decisions that affect water quality and availability around the world. Stroud Water Research Center is an independent, 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.

National Wildlife Federation is America’s largest conservation organization, inspiring Americans to protect wildlife for our children’s future.