On Tuesday, June 14, 2016, all 113 fourth graders at Linton Springs Elementary School will participate in building approximately 20 concrete reef balls as part of a larger project connected with Coastal Conservation Association of Maryland’s Living Reef Action Campaign.  The project will run throughout the course of the day, with students working in sessions from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m., 10:30 to 11:30 a.m., and 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.

The concrete reef balls will provide habitat for the oysters to begin rebuilding a reef.  Right now, the oyster population in the Chesapeake Bay is estimated at less than 1% of its historic population.  Oysters play an important role in maintaining water quality.  As part of their curriculum, students have studied water quality and the importance of the oyster as a keystone species in the Bay.  This action project will extend that unit, giving students the opportunity to make a real-life impact in the Bay watershed. 

According to teacher Mandy Chappell, “Once the student-built reef balls are added to the Bay, Stevenson University will monitor the reef site for several years, so that hopefully these fourth graders will have access to that data in the future.”

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