The Leaf Pack Network is an initiative of Stroud™ Water Research Center. The Stroud Center seeks to advance knowledge and stewardship of freshwater systems through global research, education, and watershed restoration.

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Goals and Objectives

Next Generation Science Standards Alignment
(Grades 5-12)

Performance Expectations Disciplinary Core Ideas Cross Cutting Concepts Engineering Practices
3-LS4-3, MS-LS2-1, MS-LS2-2, MS-LS2-4, MS-LS2-5, HS-LS2-1, HS-LS2-2, HS-LS2-7 LS4.C, LS2.A, LS2.C, LS4.D, ETS1.B Cause and Effect; Patterns; Stability and Change; Scale; Proportion and Quantity Engaging in Argument from Evidence; Analyzing and Interpreting Data; Constructing Explanations and Designing Solutions; Using Mathematics and Computational Thinking

Goals for Involvement in the Leaf Pack Network®

  • To actively engage students in investigative and place-based watershed education in environmental science, technology, engineering, and math (E-STEM) content.
  • To promote student inquiry by using scientific methods involving observational and explanatory
  • To raise awareness of the importance of streamside forests to the ecology of rivers and streams and to promote their stewardship.
  • To develop a diverse and dynamic network of groups that digitally share information about their
    backyard streams.
  • To use the Leaf Pack Stream Ecology Kit and other teaching resources to improve hands-on E-STEM education and teacher professional development.

Student Objectives for Involvement in the Leaf Pack Network

At the conclusion of the project, students will have:

  • Used the Leaf Pack Network as a tool to apply and understand scientific principles in a real-world situation.
  • Conducted a research-oriented investigation of their local stream(s).
  • Engaged in inquiry-based, hands-on data gathering and monitoring.
  • Observed and described aquatic food webs and resource availability among communities,
    populations, and organisms in a freshwater ecosystem.
  • Identified local tree species and their function as food and habitat in freshwater ecosystems.
  • Identified local macroinvertebrates.
  • Explored macroinvertebrates’ roles as valuable indicators of stream health.
  • Identified their local watershed using a map.
  • Measured physical characteristics of a stream.
  • Analyzed macroinvertebrate data by using indices to assess water quality.
  • Formulated research questions related to leaf packs and E-STEM disciplines.
  • Drawn conclusions based on empirical evidence about the relationships among habitat, land use, and macroinvertebrate diversity and density.
  • Identified a way to improve water quality and minimize human impact in a local stream.
  • Collected real data in real places to improve capacity for real-world decision-making surrounding
    water-quality impacts and watershed stewardship.