This unit is about Wintergreen Brook, which flows on the east side of West Rock and through West Rock Nature Center, and the geologic processes which shaped the land it flows over. It is designed to use a mix of field visits and map studies to give students an understanding of a watershed and the way a stream flows over the land. The exercises involving maps will provide students with skill building activities in math and information gathering, correlating data from several different kinds of maps. The geologic events which produced West Rock and the sandstone the Brook flows over are studied and related to events in the development of life on this planet. Evidence of these geologic processes is visible in several places along the brook. Another section deals with the water cycle and the specifics of rainfall and streamflow as well as the use of Lake Wintergreen as a municipal water supply. This section provides many opportunities for math exercises as well as an understanding of personal water usage. A final section deals with the recycling of calcium atoms from ancient sea creatures through geologic processes and human activities into our food supply and muscles.
This unit is designed to be used as part of a high school ecology course and would also be good and locally relevant in an earth science course.
(Recommended for high school Ecology and Earth Science classes)