Area students enjoy ‘Maritime Education Days’

Published 12:40 am Thursday, September 25, 2008

By Staff
Event held this week at N.C. Estuarium
Lifestyles &Features Editor
Nearly 700 eighth graders from Beaufort and Hyde counties are converging on the North Carolina Estuarium this week for Maritime Education Days, presented by the Washington Beaufort County Chamber of Commerce and PCS Phosphate.
The fifth annual event began Tuesday and concludes today.
The event builds on what the students are learning in the classroom, according to Padgett.
The event began in 2004 as part of the chamber’s 100th anniversary. At that time, Maritime History Education Week was presented and the response was so positive it was decided to make it an annual event, according to Anne Crumpler, the chamber’s assistant director.
The program has grown over the years, according to Crumpler. From the start, any school in Beaufort County could participate and this year students from Mattamuskeet School in Hyde County were invited. Plans are underway to include Pamlico County students next year.
Taking part in this week’s three-day event are Bath Elementary, Washington Montessori Public Charter School, Chocowinity Middle School, Beaufort County Ed Tech Center, Northeast Elementary, P.S. Jones Middle School and S.W. Snowden Elementary, along with the Hyde County students.
Stations, each offering a fun and educational experience, include a film and a scavenger hunt in the Estuarium, boating safety with the Pamlico Sail &Power Squadron and PCS Phosphate history and the ever-popular fossil dig. New to this year’s event are Sea Tow Pamlico Sound — which is offering safety tips on jet skis, tubes and wake boards — and the RENCI ROVER educational outreach program at East Carolina University. The latter, in part, allows students to study emergency response technology and plan for a hurricane.
There are 28 volunteers helping to stage Maritime Education Days, according to Crumpler. In appreciation, their lunches are provided by Kentucky Fried Chicken, Pizza Inn and Jersey Mikes. Members of Washington High Schools Jr. ROTC program are pitching in by setting up and taking down the tents and chairs each day.
Those attending Maritime Education Days aren’t going home empty handed. Each student and the teachers accompanying them are presented with a gift bag courtesy PCS Phosphate and the Estuarium.
::QUIZ to put in box on JUMP::
Maritime Education Days quiz
Are you smarter than an eighth grader? Test your knowledge with these questions, part of the scavenger hunt at this week’s Maritime Education Days. Answers are below.
1) What is the name of the river where Washington is located?
2) What do crabs use to protect themselves?
3) What three groups of people lived in Coastal North Carolina in the past?
4) What is one of the things that can happen to a striped bass (rockfish) as it swims in the river?
5) What did the City of Washington build to clean up pollution from downtown?
1) Pamlico River; 2) claws, camouflage, sharp points on shell and hard shell; 3) Native Americans, European settlers and African-Americans; 4) caught, eaten by predators, bad water, can’t find food or road blocking spawning stream; 5) a wetland.
Source: North Carolina Estuarium