Superior 5th Graders Taking Part in Annual Wastewater Treatment Plan Tours
SUPERIOR, Wis. – It wouldn’t be fifth grade in the Superior School District without a visit to the city’s wastewater treatment plant.
Over 300 students are getting the chance to see the facilities and learn the seven steps of the water treatment process, plus the two steps for solid treatment, and where it goes afterwards.
“5th graders are at that age where they’re still kids, but they’re also ready to learn,” says Megan Hogfeldt, the Water Resource Specialist for the City of Superior. “They’re sponges and they’re full of life. So there’s a lot of a-ha moments with connecting science and environmental studies.”
The visit coincides with the student’s learning about the water cycle in their classrooms. Hogfeldt says she works with teachers to provide materials to help teach about water uses and keeping it clean.
“What I think is whenever you can have authentic learning,” says 5th grade teacher Jennifer Sullivan, “where you are actually out in the world, investigating other people’s careers, the services that they provide, not only will stay with them longer than just learning it from a book, but it may influence them to want to go into environmental studies or to at least be an environmentalist in their personal lives.”
Tours for fifth graders have been taking place for over 20 years. A fun fact, the Superior wastewater treatment plant was built in 1958. Prior to that, all wastewater would go straight into Lake Superior.