Riverview 6th Graders Visit Point Bonita

Anthony Gutierrez
Staff Writer
March 23, 2016

River News-Herald

Last week the Riverview Middle School 6th graders went on a 3-day science field trip to Point Bonita to get hands-on experience on learning about the wonders of nature. They brought home new found knowledge on nature as well as something special that some may take for granted and not appreciate it until it’s gone.

Riverview principal Sonia Rambo explained the purpose of the field trip was so that students would be able to explore nature and learn in a different setting. This experience will pull out 6th graders from a classroom to nature as a whole by going on 5+ hour hikes in the natural, oceanside habitat of Point Bonita.

Students carried journals, pencils and a curious mind to discover the mysteries of the natural world with the help of Point Bonita navigators who would lead the path to different areas of beauty. One of these areas was the beach where navigators would lecture on the effect of gravitational pull from the sun on the tides. Students would get out their notepad and pen and write down notes on the lecture.

“The students hiked the entire 3 days,” Sonia said. She met the students at the beach and listened on to the navigator’s lecture as students jotted down notes about what they were learning.

At the end of their 7 hour hiking days, students would retire at YMCA dorm buildings and eat YMCA meals from breakfast, to lunch, to dinner. Some of the hikes were shorter but for the longer ones, students would bring foods in their bags on their hikes.

Navigators lectured on ecosystems and “garbology,” which was the study of reducing waste in smart ways. At stop stations, there were disposable trash bags for waste and another one for “garbology.” The contents of the “garbology” bag could find a use for compost. The left over bananas, the half-eaten apples, the mildly eaten meals can get recycled into nature from the “garbology” bag.

Navigators played a game with students asking them about different ways to reduce waste. Some students answered this question by eating smaller meals, not eating what you aren’t going to finish, being less wasteful, saving your food for later and being mindful of how you recycle. This overall encouraged the idea that everyone’s decisions mattered in preserving and keeping our natural ecosystem healthy and thriving.

Sonia felt that students can bring home these lessons, but a more important lesson in life that she felt that was implied during this time was an appreciation for the outdoors.

There were 51 students who went on the field trip along with 9 chaperones and 3 staff members. They were divided into 4 groups with each group containing 12-15 students. The cost per student to experience the science field trip was $220 for 3 days.

“It’s a lot of money,” Sonia said. “The PTC (parent teacher conferences) helped in raising money through fundraisers like paint night, bake sales at the rib cook off, selling raffle tickets at boat events and selling candles.”

Sonia said the fundraising started from the encouragement of the 5th grade teachers from White School. They hoped the graduating students to the 6th grade would experience the beautiful science field trip at Point Bonita.

Riverview and Point Bonita has had a strong connection in bonds that the Riverview Middle School principal feels very appreciative of. “The partnership Riverview has with Point Bonita is a very familial bond. It’s like tradition, we visit them and we’d like to continue our partnership for years to come.”

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