Each year the Smyrna-Clayton Rotary Club does a service project that benefits students in the community. This year, the club applied for a grant to send fourth graders on fun and educational trips to state parks.

Each year the Smyrna-Clayton Rotary Club does a service project that benefits students in the community.

This year the Rotary District 7630 approved a grant funded through The Rotary Foundation that sent three Smyrna School District fourth grade elementary classes to a different state park. The purpose was to provide an outdoor environmental education experience for the students and the opportunity to enjoy and appreciate the beauty of Delaware’s natural resources.

The Smyrna Elementary fourth grade participated in a stream study on macroinvertebrates at Brandywine Creek State Park on April 5. The children learned about macroinvertebrates found in the Brandywine Creek, tested the creek water for oxygen and PH levels, and sifted the mud from the riverbank looking for invertebrates. The children enjoyed the opportunity to explore nature and dig in the mud.

Half the Clayton Elementary fourth grade toured Fort Delaware in Delaware City on April 26 and the other half went on April 28. The students learned about the fort’s history and types of activities the soldiers would do during the Civil War period when the fort housed thousands of prisoners from the Confederate army. They met guides who portrayed an Army doctor, school teacher, blacksmith, and Army officer. They also enjoyed the round trip boat ride from Delaware City to Pea Patch Island as well as the trolley ride to the fort.

The North Smyrna Elementary fourth grade visited the Seaside Nature Center at Cape Henlopen State Park on May 25. They participated in the reptile program where students had the opportunity to touch a turtle and a corn snake. They also used a seine net off the shore in the Delaware Bay to collect marine life which included seaweed, snails, shrimp, jelly fish, and a horseshoe crab estimated to be 10 years old. For most of the students, this was their first visit to Cape Henlopen State Park.