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Brackish Water Learning

Activity

Species Adaptations

Learn about brackish water and the different adaptations that allow many species to thrive in environments where freshwater and saltwater mix.
Davila Assets - marine 3

Science Seed

Brackish water is common near Houston, Texas, where freshwater from rivers and streams mixes with saltwater from the Gulf of Mexico. This occurs in estuarine areas like Galveston Bay, creating a dynamic ecosystem rich in biodiversity. The brackish water conditions in Houston support a variety of fish species specially adapted to thrive in this transitional environment. Some of these adaptations include: salt glands to help them regulate the salt levels in their bodies and osmoregulation to control the amount of water and salt in their bodies and maintain the right balance even when they change from fresh to saltwater. Sometimes Gulf of Mexico species, like the manatee, swim into the freshwater bayous and rivers of Houston!
botany jar illustration

earn Badges

Badges can be earned through hands-on experiences within each of the 16 branches of science, or “Science Slices.” You can earn a badge in each branch of science by doing four activities in these categories. We also encourage participants to keep a Nature Journal to record their memories, and to express themselves creatively through writing or drawing after each activity. We recommend that each child (and parent if they’d like) write or draw in a journal after each activity, with expectations of your children that match their age (the goal is self-expression, not perfection).

Explore the Davila Elementary

Use this map to help you guide your way through the Davila Elementary as you complete activities.

The Ecologist School Web Guide: Davila Elementary Edition

Davila Elementary – SPARK Edition is a collaborative project between Families in Nature, SPARK School Park Program and Davila Elementary to help our community learn more about their school campus while getting outside into nature together! This booklet has 64 lessons across 16 different branches of science to help you play, learn and volunteer in the park as a family!

Each branch of science corresponds with a matching badge featured in the top right corner of every activity. Complete all 4 activities in a science slice and you are eligible to earn that badge. Click above to order your own Ecologist School badges!

Circle of Sciences

Our hands-on activities span across 16 different branches of science! Each Science Slice is broken into 8 learning categories: S.T.E.A.M., Volunteerism, Outdoor Skills and Leadership Development. Our activities are designed to be enjoyed by all ages.

join Families in Nature

It is our vision to inspire all families to fall in love with nature and foster the next generation of conservationists. Becoming a member of Families in Nature will give your family the opportunity to have adventures in nature, experience field science, develop as youth conservation leaders, and make memories that will last a lifetime. Memberships are free for everyone.

Who are we?

Families in Nature works to create opportunities for nature connection with the purpose of sparking a deep love and desire to protect, conserve and restore the environment. Our mission is to connect children and their families to nature and to each other through time spent learning, playing, and volunteering outdoors. It is our vision to inspire ALL families to fall in love with nature and foster the next generation of conservationists.

SPARK’s mission is to work with public schools to develop their playgrounds into community parks. SPARK has built 200+ community parks in 17 different school districts throughout the Houston area. Each park is designed based on ideas and needs of the school and surrounding neighborhoods. While all of the parks are different, a typical park consists of modular playground equipment, a walking trail, benches, picnic tables, trees, an outdoor classroom, and a public art component.

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