Discover the Waters of Nebraska builds awareness early


Discover the Waters of Nebraska, an educational booklet developed by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and Project WET for students in grades 4-6, is now available at the Nebraska Maps and More Store at UNL's School of Natural Resources.

This educational learning tool is being distributed statewide to 4-H, extension educators, schools, natural resources districts, scouting offices, and others, with major support from UNL Extension.

Elbert Dickey, UNL Extension dean, said, "Water is essential to Nebraska, and this publication is designed for young learners as they prepare to be stewards of Nebraska's resources."

Discover the Waters of Nebraska invites readers to spend a day as a Nebraska farmer, investigate a tornado through the story of a storm researcher, and travel the "Flyway Highway" as a sandhill crane while learning about Nebraska's many water wonders. The colorful, 24-page activity booklet teaches children 7 to 12 years old where water comes from, how we use it, how to conserve and protect it and the relationships between weather, climate and water - all in a fun and interactive way.

"The younger they're introduced to these ideas, the more it will get to be part of who that person is," said Donna Woudenberg, the drought management specialist at the National Drought Mitigation Center and the School of Natural Resources who coordinated the effort.

Tadd Barrow, a School of Natural Resources Extension educator who focuses on water quality, said, "This booklet will provide the next generation of policy makers and resource managers a fun, interactive and creative way to learn about the diverse water resources unique to the state of Nebraska."

Woudenberg and others helped Project WET come up with the ideas for Discover the Waters of Nebraska, based on input from teachers, environmental educators and others in three meetings across the state. Other main collaborating organizations were the Lower Platte River Corridor Alliance and 4-H.

Project WET, a nonprofit organization based in Bozeman, Mont., promotes water education state by state and around the world.

Discover the Waters of Nebraska is available free while supplies last from local Extension offices or from the Nebraska Maps and More Store at or in the first floor lobby of Hardin Hall. Contact the store at 402-472-7550.

- Kelly Helm Smith, School of Natural Resources

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