UHS club participates in the Orange County Water Festival


Aurnov Chattopadhyay (So.) discusses biochemical oxygen demand with a group of interested children. (Courtesy of Scientastic)

Staff Writer
On Wednesday and Thursday, March 25-26, the Orange County Water District, Disneyland Resort, National Water Research Institute and the Orange County Water District Groundwater Guardian Team presented the 19th annual Children’s Water Education Festival at the University of California, Irvine (UCI). The Festival implemented was free of charge to all Orange County branched schools. Its purpose was to provide a unique opportunity to teach elementary school students (third, fourth and fifth graders) about local water issues and how to conserve water usage in order to save the environment.
Presentations were given and taught to the California Science Standards and since its first year, more than 105,000 Orange County students have experienced and attended it. Even one of University High School’s very own clubs, Scientastic, was invited to participate in the water education festival. The club, advised by Mr. Joseph Huber (Science Dept.), developed a 4-station booth focusing on the various components of Water Quality to teach children about Biochemical Oxygen Demand, Fecal Coliform, Dissolved Oxygen and numerous other topics.
A participating member, Mahek Logantha (So.), said, “At the Water Festival, we taught kids all about water.  I especially enjoyed interacting with the children by asking them questions and letting them touch the different displays. Overall, I’d say it was a very enriching experience for both the students and the club.”
The group also spent countless hours developing their interactive curriculum, display boards and interactive demonstrations. Their lesson plan consisted of games such as Jeopardy and science experiments involving water samples. All in all, the water festival was a great learning and fun experience for all. One of the club’s co-presidents, Aurnov Chattopadhyay (So.) explains, “Teaching these kids has given me an opportunity to give back to the community. There is an indescribable joy in seeing kids find their passion in science and question the world around them.”