Linking Sustainable Agriculture, Soil Quality, and Water Quality for 4th Graders of Cheney Lake Watershed, Central Kansas

Project Overview

Project Type: Youth Educator
Funds awarded in 2009: $2,000.00
Projected End Date: 12/31/2012
Region: North Central
State: Kansas
Project Manager:
DeAnn Presley
Kansas State University, Department of Agronomy


Not commodity specific


  • Crop Production: cover crops
  • Education and Training: demonstration, youth education
  • Natural Resources/Environment: soil stabilization
  • Soil Management: earthworms, organic matter, soil analysis, soil chemistry, soil microbiology, soil quality/health
  • Sustainable Communities: sustainability measures

    Proposal abstract:

    We propose a joint pilot project between four 4th grade teachers and classes (approximately 100 students); the non-profit organization, Cheney Lake Watershed, Inc.; and Dr. DeAnn Presley, an extension educator for K-State Research and Extension. Cheney Reservoir provides drinking water to Wichita, Kansas and is severely impaired by nutrients and sediment. Rural students from the watershed will learn to appreciate linkages between sustainable agriculture, soil quality, water quality, and a rural way of life. Each classroom will be visited once in September 2010 by Presley for 45 minutes to outline the concepts of erosion, eutrophication, soil quality, water quality, etc., through the use of hands-on experiential learning tools such as earthworm farms, soil monoliths, basic chemistry tests, etc. All four classes will visit a farm that practices sustainable agriculture in October 2010 to perform soil quality assessments for three soils on the farm, water quality assessments of a stream on the farm, and to interact and learn from the farmer.

    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.