Hannah Bengtson — 2017 Theme Water

botanical garden intern smiling white sitting on a giant shark that is part of a sculpture exhibit where it's made of trash from the ocean

So… water we doing here anyway?

As the education interns, Clara and I have gotten to spend a lot of time planning the youth programs around this year’s theme. Water has been a great topic; it is so open to interpretation. This summer we have Water Day one Friday each month. Water Day offers several educational stations around the Gardens, as well as a slip-n-slide, sponge toss, and bubble station. The kids seemed to enjoy all the activities, and I think they even learned some things through the STEAM station that Clara and I helped plan. We did a few experiments and demonstrations focusing on color mixing, evaporation, melting, and the water cycle.

The Washed Ashore exhibit offers another really great opportunity to think about water quality and pollution issues. The amount of garbage that ends up in the ocean and can negatively impact wildlife is mind blowing. Even garbage that starts in Iowa ditches can find its way to the ocean, as the watershed is all connected. Steams lead to rivers that lead to the ocean. Be mindful of garbage and pollution around you. What are some ways you can help save our wildlife?