I had the opportunity to take part in the BeWet program that was taking place in Ventura Harbor at Surfer’s Knoll. There were about over 50 student volunteers that helped out with this field trip. We hosted three groups of about 100 students from Frank Middle School; group one went to the NPS Visitor Center, group two went to the Ventura Treatment Plant, and group three went to the beach in front of the Santa Clara River. This is where we taught the Frank Middle School students to survey the beach, analyze sediment, measure water quality, and identify shorebirds.
I was paired with one of the specific group of kids and had the opportunity to experience each center that the kids got to experience. Unfortunately, the kids that I was paired with only got to experience how to measure the water quality that day of the Santa Clara estuary. I had taken notice that day of the beach and saw that there were just a few large dunes with a large amount of vegetation on them. I had also noticed that the waves that day were very subtle and the sand was soft to the touch and not so harsh to walk on. They were first showed how to measure the water quality and then they performed it themselves and the volunteers that were paired with each group had a chance to measure the water quality for themselves as well. After we performed many trials of measuring the water quality, each result came back the same, the water quality was very poor that day and the kids were all shocked and made comments like “eww gross!”, it was actually quite funny.
For the most part, the kids seemed to really enjoy the program and its entirety; they learned a lot from each portion of the trip. They were even given pop questions at each destination of the field trip to answer and they actually knew a majority of the answers. The BeWet program was actually quite fun to volunteer for and I would definitely consider doing it again.