On Jan. 31, 59 sixth grade students from River Oaks Elementary School traveled to Horseshoe Lake
on the Cosumnes River Preserve to plant valley oak acorns, as part of a partnership between Sacramento County
, the Bureau of Land Management and Galt Joint Union Elementary School District to improve the habitat at the lake.
With the help of Cosumnes River Preserve
staff and volunteers, students worked in teams to gather materials and dig holes for planting. Three acorns were planted at each site and tree protectors and weed mats were put in place. Acorns for this project were collected by second and third-grade students earlier in the school year.
Along with planting valley oak acorns, the students had many opportunities for wildlife viewing. Students observed red-tailed hawks, egrets, herons, Sandhill cranes, western skinks and fence lizards, and a white-tailed kite. One team of students even dug out an old tire from the nearby lake so it could be properly disposed of.
The work to improve the habitat at Horseshoe Lake is a partnership between Sacramento County, the Bureau of Land Management and Galt Joint Union Elementary School District.
Project-based service learning has been shown to teach responsibility, build confidence and provide career awareness.
This important habitat enhancement project helped these sixth-grade students deepen their understanding of environmental stewardship. By the end of the day, they planted approximately 175 oak sites.
For the next three years, Galt Students will be caring for the trees, monitoring success rates and measuring tree growth.