Monthly Archives: November 2014

Rio Salado Habitat Restoration

Madison Frary
Class of 2016
November 8th, 2014

Today I was able to attend a field trip with SNHS that allowed us to see what we normally wouldn’t see.  In an area about 45 minutes away from Buckeye was a habitat that needed some help.  The habitat was along the river, making it home to Arizona animals and insects; including the monarch butterfly.  We were split into groups and put to work right away.  My group had the task of dealing with the invasive plant of blue buffalo grass.  While the grass looks harmless at first with its fluffy seedlings, we quickly discovered that that was not the case at all.

This grass spreads like wild fire, as soon as the water hits the seeds the plant is up and going.  This creates competition for all the plants that actually belong here.  Now they are fighting for water that is already limited in the valley.  The grass can grow close to other plants and entwines its roots with the others, making it extremely difficult to remove.

When our group did have to remove the buffalo grass, people had to be in front to cut off each “head” of the grass.  This is the fluffy part that contains the seeds.  It was stressed to us many times that if one of those seeds got free all our hard word would be for nothing.  After the cutting, the clippings made their way into a bag to be sealed.  Next we have to dig each plant up, making sure that we got the roots and the nutrient ball out of the ground so it wouldn’t make a reappearance.  When the grass grows together, their root systems get stronger and its even more a pain to get out.

It wasn’t the best of time, working out under the sun of Arizona, but we did it for a reason.  I can now say that I helped the habitat so the generations from now will be able to look at the beauty if has created and the animals it has housed.


Citizen Science Project

Brooklyn Adams
Class of 2016
November 5th, 2014

Title: Cyclone Center
Classify over 30 years of tropical cyclone data.

This citizen science project was about classifying cyclones that have been recorded over the world for the past 30 years.  During the project I looked through many picture of storms and clicked the classification I thought it belonged under.  I choose between cyclone storms that were embedded, shear, eye, and curved.  I also got to choose the center of the storm and/or the eye size.  This helped by analyzing different storms from a human eye view.  I choose this project because I am very fascinated with weather and storms and like the complexity of different cyclones.  I think it’s rewarding being able to put my opinion into analyzing this kind of data.  I like that you are able to learn about the different types of cyclones by scrolling down and reading the article on the actual storm.  Overall, it was fascinating learning experience.

Habitat Restoration

Featured image

SNHS students before going out into the field to pull invasive species and help the habitat. Bottom Row: Madison, Carl, Jack Top Row: Ms. Mary Cavano, Sophie, Derric, Ashley

Today SNHS helped at the Rio Salado Habitat Restoration project sponsored by SCA. The project allowed volunteers to participate in riparian restoration by pulling invasive species such as buffalo grass. It was difficult work, but really fun to help save a unique Arizona habitat! Thanks to the students who participated.

SNHS Reflection

By Alyssa Paul
Class of 2016
November 5, 2014

For my community project this semester I chose to partake in a science demonstration at Buckeye Elementary on Wednesday, October 8th.  A few other members and I conducted experiments in front of the class, such as Elephant Toothpaste, which involved adding a catalyst to a mixture of hydrogen peroxide and dish soap in order to speed up the reaction.  We then aided the students in performing their own experiment testing the effects of acidity level for cleaning pennies. I chose this particular experiment because both my brother and my mom are becoming teachers and it is something I enjoy as well.  It helped the community because the trip encouraged students to pursue and become excited about science and a possible career in it.  Learning about science is important because we are the future and it will be up to our generation to solve serious issued we have today using science, such as pollution.  I feel gratified after contributing to teaching the future scientists who can one day change our world.