No matter where you live in North Dakota, there’s a river that influences what happens in your region.
That’s why the State Water Commission has held annual Water Institute seminars across the state.
This year, the focus is the Mouse River.
Jim Olson reports on the educators who are learning about the river that can be tiny as a mouse, or big as a lion.
Whether it’s in the classroom with a hydrologist offering facts
Or in the field, seeing how flood protection systems are developed
The men and women in this year’s Water Institute are learning a lot about the Mouse River.
(Tina Harding, State Water Commission) “We understand the Missouri River. We understand the Red River. A lot of people don’t understand the impacts of the Souris River.”
Even the name can be confusing – it’s the Mouse in North Dakota, the Souris – French for mouse – in Canada. And it’s moods can be fickle as a falling snowflake.
(Tina Harding, State Water Commission) “It’s a feast or famine type of watershed.”
Understanding the changing faces of rivers in the state is the goal of these educators who get continuing education credit, but more importantly, go home with materials to bring to their classrooms.
(Kim Schoenborn, Belcourt Teacher) “We are going over to the Belcourt area to learn more about the waterways there too so I want to be able to use some information of the local areas and tie it into real-world problems in my math classroom.”
(Troy Kinn, Northern Cass Teacher) “I plan to put some of this into my curriculum personally – there are things I can use for health and physical education, but there’s also things I can bring back to some of the other teachers.”
This is the 4th Water Institute class for Kinn, who says when it comes to waterways, no less than the future of his family is at stake.
(Troy Kinn, Northern Cass Teacher) “My life personally as an avid hunter, as a fisherman, how it affects my kids, how it’ll affect my students for generations to come. Will it be the same resource for years to come at the quality that we enjoy today.”
(Angie Bartholomay, DCB Pysical Science Asst. Professor) “If we can get everyone to at least take away something that is useful in their classroom, that really is what we’re aiming for.”
And considering many of the attendees return again and again, these sessions are apparently on target.
In Bottineau, Jim Olson, KX News.
Next year, the Water Institute will be held in Dickinson.