River Camp!

RIVER CAMP! Virtual Education Series

Finding yourself in an education program at your kitchen table and backyard? RIVER CAMP! is a compilation of K-12 education resources.

* Videos are created with smartphones during the time of stay-at-home protocols.

River Nature Walk

Featured May 27, 2020

What will you find when you visit the San Antonio River? Take a nature walk along the San Antonio River. You can explore the river in downtown San Antonio’s urban environment or in a more natural setting along the Mission Reach section of the River Walk. You’ll be surprised to find that there is nature all around you, wherever you are! No matter where you go, remember to be curious and have fun! While you’re exploring the river, check out the San Antonio River Authority citizen science program that is part of a global community.  You can become a volunteer Citizen Scientist and start collecting important, research-grade data right now! No experience necessary.  Simply use your smartphone to download and sign-up on iNaturalist.org for free! Once you’re in, be sure to join San Antonio River Projects. For younger children, using an interactive and free app called iNaturalist SEEK, children can get outside, explore and learn fun facts about the nature all around them. They can identify wildlife and plants and take pictures to earn badges. Suggested activities on SEEK, based on skill– Observe a plant, an insect, a bird, or pick your favorite species and share a few facts about it. Go on a scavenger hunt. Photograph a plant/animal interaction, photograph an animal’s home, photograph animal clues like tracks and nests, photograph something of a certain color, or just make up your own criteria. Whatever it is, remember to be curious and have fun!

Benefits of Bees

Featured May 20, 2020

Did you know that there are an estimated 700 native bee species in Texas? In fact, many plant species rely on specific bee species for pollination. The Bees of Central Texas is a guide from the University of Texas’ Jha Lab and its collaborating partners that provide useful identification clues for bees. You can also learn how to survey bee populations near you!

Fascinating Facts about Native Grasses

Featured May 13, 2020

If Nerf balls, battleship games, and games of tag sound fun to your family, why not learn while playing games at the same time?

The University of Northern Iowa’s Tallgrass Prairie Center has a wealth of incredibly fun and engaging lesson plans that teach kids of various ages all about the importance of native grasses.

Fish Stories

Featured May 8, 2020

Channel Catfish are native fish species in the San Antonio River and they have many unique adaptations to survive and thrive in the San Antonio River. Conduct family research on the other kinds of fish that live in our river.

River Authority scientists monitor how the fish species are faring to gauge the health of the river.

Don’t forget, fishing in the river is a fun family activity.

Pervious vs Impervious Surfaces

Featured May 6, 2020

This is a hands-on lesson that you can do at home to study the difference between pervious and impervious surfaces. You’ll be surprised how beneficial increased pervious surface in a neighborhood can help the San Antonio River and your neighborhood, alike!

Neighborhood Nature Walk pt 2

Featured May 1, 2020

What did you see on your neighborhood hike?  

Using an interactive and free app called iNaturalist SEEK, children can get outside, explore and learn fun facts about the nature all around them. They can identify wildlife and plants and take pictures to earn badges.

Suggested activities on SEEK, based on skill– Observe a plant, an insect, a bird, or pick your favorite species and share a few facts about it. Go on a scavenger hunt. Photograph a plant/animal interaction, photograph an animal’s home, photograph animal clues like tracks and nests, photograph something of a certain color, or just make up your own criteria. Whatever it is, remember to be curious and have fun!

Neighborhood Nature Journals

Featured April 29, 2020

Want a cool tool to help create mindful moments of curiosity at your neighborhood park? Kids and grownups alike can start a nature journal anytime to build reflection, writing, research, and art skills. 

Keeping a Nature Diary or Journal can deepen awareness and connections with the natural world and the San Antonio River Watershed. Keep your five senses alert, then draw and write your observations anytime you find yourself walking around your neighborhood or River Authority Parks.

For ideas on journaling and fun nature activities, check out Compass to Nature, for a comprehensive educational resource from the Prairie Wetlands Learning Center. 

Be a Citizen Scientist!

Featured April 24, 2020

The San Antonio River Authority has a citizen science program that is part of a global community.  You can become a volunteer Citizen Scientist and start collecting important, research-grade data right now! No experience necessary.  Simply use your smartphone to download and sign-up on iNaturalist.org for free! Once you’re in, be sure to join San Antonio River Projects.

Check out the River Authority’s Backyard Bio-blitz from April 24-27 2020! Look at the #backyardbioblitz tag and tag us on social media @sanantonioriver.

What is great, too, is that we use the data in our bird studies, our monitoring of the success of the ecosystem restoration along the San Antonio River, and help provide information into wildlife migration. It is simple and FUN!

MONARCH BUTTERFLY MONITORING

Did you know that millions of Monarch Butterflies migrate thousands of miles from the Northeast United States to the oyamel fir forests of Central Mexico to spend the winter? San Antonio, Texas is in their southward and northward migratory path. Our San Antonio River offers a rest stop for these amazing insects. Beginning in April through October, Monarchs may be seen along the San Antonio River and throughout the river’s watershed sipping the nectar from its flowers or laying hundreds of eggs on the leaves of native milkweed. 

Would you like to participate as a citizen scientist? Journey North is studying the migratory patterns of the Monarch butterflies and asks others to report sightings on their website. You’ll learn all about this butterfly’s journey, its life cycle, the importance of the data you collect, and even other butterfly species that look a lot like them. 

Earth Day River Pride

Featured April 22, 2020

There are many things we can do to keep our planet, including the San Antonio River, healthy. This game of bingo encourages students and their families to perform actions that will benefit the environment.

Nature Diaries: Barn Swallows

Featured April 17, 2020

Explore Birds in Your Neighborhood! No experience is necessary when it comes to studying your neighborhood birds. SEEK by iNaturalist is the perfect way to uncover what type of birds frequent your home. Simply snap a picture, and the app will tell you what sort of bird is visiting you. It even has beautiful pictures and maps to explore. SEEK is free and supported by the California Academy of Sciences and National Geographic Society.  When you grow in you birding skills, you can be a part of the eBird citizen science community and help track bird hot spots! Be sure to keep a daily journal of bird visitors!

Neighborhood Nature Scavenger Hunt

Featured April 15, 2020

Families can become a citizen scientist with no experience necessary!

While collecting your scavenger hunt sightings you can also become a part of a citizen science program that is part of a global community.  Start collecting important, research-grade data right now!  Simply use your smartphone to download and sign-up on iNaturalist.org for free! Once you’re in, be sure to join San Antonio River Projects.

What is great, too, is that scientists locally and globally use the data in research studies about wildlife migration patterns, monitoring rare species, species distribution, and much more! It is simple and FUN!

Nature Diaries: Texas Bluebonnets

Featured April 10, 2020

A day in nature is composed of a million trivial events, scarcely noticeable in the midst of our normal busy lives. Keeping a Nature Diary or Journal can deepen awareness and connections with the natural world and the San Antonio River Watershed. Keep your five senses alert, then draw and write your observations anytime you find yourself walking around your neighborhood.

For ideas on journaling and fun nature activities, check out Compass to Nature, for a comprehensive educational resource from the Prairie Wetlands Learning Center. 

Precious Proportion: An Investigation of All the Water in the World

Featured April 8, 2020

Visualizing the amount or volume of “all the water in the world”  can be difficult due to the scale of our planet Earth. This hands-on activity allows students to create their own model of distribution to understand just how much drinkable water there is on our planet, and how critical it is to keep it clean. 

*Video activity is modified from the Project WET curriculum.

Neighborhood Nature Walk

Featured April 3, 2020

Using an interactive and free app called iNaturalist SEEK, children can get outside, explore and learn fun facts about the nature all around them. They can identify wildlife and plants and take pictures to earn badges.

Suggested activities on SEEK, based on skill– Observe a plant, an insect, a bird, or pick your favorite species and share a few facts about it. Go on a scavenger hunt. Photograph a plant/animal interaction, photograph an animal’s home, photograph animal clues like tracks and nests, photograph something of a certain color, or just make up your own criteria. Whatever it is, remember to be curious and have fun!

Neighborhood Connections

Featured April 1, 2020

Student Lesson part 1: What in the World is a Watershed? Build a Watershed Model 

This hands-on activity and lesson uses the videos featured to teach concepts such as watersheds, runoff, land forms using a home-made model that students will learn how to build.

Student Lesson part 2: How Does the River Become Polluted? Using a Model to Demonstrate Water Pollution

This hands-on activity and lesson uses the model built in Part 1, to educate students about human impacts on creeks and rivers. 

Will pollution from your house travel to the San Antonio River? Locate your watershed address.

Alerts

Riverfront Parkway – Acequia Lift Station

Thursday, June 20 – Sunday, June 23, Riverfront Parkway is partially closed. Expect delays in traffic due to construction work. We apologize for any inconvenience.

San Pedro Creek: Rains from the Heavens

The Rains from the Heavens water wall at San Pedro Creek will be shut off due to maintenance Tuesday, June 18th. There will also be some road closures that day, so please be mindful if you are in this area. We apologize for the inconvenience.

Acequia Trail Notice

The Acequia trail will have heavy traffic near MROC starting May 22nd until further notice. The SAWS Acequia project will be bringing in crews to work on the lift station site and across the street. There will have flaggers to stop traffic, please use caution. 

SASPAMCO Paddling Trail

The SASPAMCO paddling trail is open from River Crossing Park to Helton Nature Park. *Please Note: Paddling Trail from Helton Nature Park to HWY 97 is still closed due to blockages. 

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