STREAMS, which stands for Sustainability, Technology, Research, Engineering, Agriculture, Math, and Service, is a yearlong course where students in fourth, fifth, and sixth grades, using Home Winds Farm, meet for a weekly period to study concepts and strategies associated with sustainability. The natural features of our 208-acre campus invite STREAMS students to probe the world around them, developing an awareness and understanding of the interconnectedness of environment, culture, and society. All concepts covered in STREAMS serve as an extension to units taught in science classes.
Essential Questions Explored
- What is sustainability?
- What does it mean to be a citizen scientist?
- What impact does the changing global climate have on local flora and fauna?
- Where does my food come from?
- Conducting biological analysis of various species on campus
- Cultivating environmental and community stewardship
- Developing an explorer mindset
- Implementing inquiry skills while studying local environments
- Practicing critical thinking, creativity, and collaboration
- Understanding topics of sustainability like composting, food waste, and pollutants
Below are examples of some of the major projects that students complete in fourth, fifth, and sixth grades as part of the STREAMS program:
• Chemical and biological water testing of the Peapack Brook with AmeriCorps Watershed Ambassadors and Raritan Headwaters Association
• Soil testing of GSB's campus
• Analyzing permeable and impermeable surfaces on campus
• Selecting desirable traits in chickens, incubating egg, and raising chicks
• Trout in the Classroom with Trout Unlimited
• Monitoring chicken behavior on ethograms
• Collecting data on waste around campus
• Measuring sheared wool of sheep at Home Winds
• Measuring the density of seeds in the GSB garden
• Studying access to clean water and designing water filters
• Researching natural and sustainable practices to eliminate invasive species
• Tracking local and migrating bird populations for Cornell Lab of Ornithology citizen science project
• Maple tapping and monitoring maple sap yields
• Raising rainbow trout and releasing them into the stream
• Researching and developing an aquaponics system for the trout tank
• Examining the structure, function, and relationship of plants and pollinators
• Investigating sensory systems in animals
• Studying topography and elevation of GSB
• Finding evidence of weathering and erosion on campus