RACINE — This past week students in the fifth grade at Gilmore Fine Arts studied and tackled water testing at Quarry Lake Park, 3533 Northwestern Ave, commonly known as ‘The Quarry’ according to locals.
The water sources tested by the students included the Root River and the water in the Quarry.
Students enrolled with Racine Unified School District were able to perform pH level testing and turbidity (cloudiness) testing due to a grant through the University of Wisconsin Sea Grant and Water Resources Institutes through the National Sea Grant College Program, National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration, and the State of Wisconsin.
Joining the children on their day of fun at The Quarry was Ginny Carlson from the organization to share the importance of the Root River, Lake Michigan, and other waterways.
Impact on the waterways
“We follow the Wisconsin idea of bringing resources from the university to the community,” says Carlson.”We’ve been talking a lot about the concept of marine debris and how all of us have an impact on that, just from washing polyester clothes, right, little pieces come off and go into the wash.”
This example translates to what students learned on Thursday. Debris, pollution, and other matters have an impact on the water’s pH level and turbidity.
“It (marine debris) is important here in Racine, of course, right near the Root River,” explains Carlson. “And of course, that flows into Lake Michigan.”
The students found that these results really do matter.
“I like that we are testing the water,” says Zara Sorenson, a student at Gilmore Fine Arts.
Sorenson explained that testing is important to see if animals are safe and if the planet is safe.
“Recycle, recycle, recycle,” says Sorenson about how to keep the water clean.
Water testing results
While different samples revealed different answers, Massimo Wendtof and Brick Costoabile found that the pH level for the Root River and the Quarry water were both measuring at a neutral pH level of seven.
This is the sweet spot and the students identified that.
The Racine County Eye was not present for the turbidity results.
Students pledged to work to continue learning and doing their part to keep Racine’s waterways clean.
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