Calumet Is My Back Yard, the longest-running service-learning project in the nation, completed its 12th successful year with a Science Summit at the Field Museum on Friday, May 25, 2012. More than 200 students and teachers attend the culminating summit that featured behind-the-scenes scientific tours, student presentations of their stewardship over the year, and visits to stunning museum exhibits.
During the 2011-12 academic year, more than 800 students participated in 40+ stewardship days at natural areas throughout the Lake Calumet region on the city's south side. Fifteen high schools engaged classrooms in hands-on science activities enabling students to learning about ecosystems, biodiversity, and the threats that non-native invasive species pose to our ecology.
This year student groups were asked to present their stewardship work over the course of the year. Students created presentation boards, videos, slide shows, games, and field guides of the plants and animals at their adopted ecosystem. Students did a great job building and presenting their materials.
As one student said at the end of the day: CIMBY is a great opportunity and it can change your life. The goal of CIMBY is to raise the next generation of environmental leaders and activists. CIMBY students are lucky enough to move beyond the textbook into our natural areas to gain a deeper understanding of the threats to our environment and how they, together, can work toward solutions.
Many, many thanks to the amazing teachers and CIMBY staff who gave countless hours to helping make these exciting opportunities available.