2007-10-19 / Community

PS 43 Students Walk Their Way To Jamaica Bay

At left: Mickey Cohen of American Littoral Society shows students a small fish from the bay. At left: Mickey Cohen of American Littoral Society shows students a small fish from the bay. Last week, teacher Dina Mongiardo's fifth-grade class from PS 43 in Edgemere walked their way to Bayswater Park to use seine nets off Jamaica Bay. The students walked from Beach 29 Street along the boardwalk and over to the bay to discover the amazing resources of this NYC gem.

Most students were unaware that Jamaica Bay was just outside their school. This was the first chance for many to use wading boots and pull the large nets through the bay to see what marine life they would find. It was clear from the smiles on their faces how excited the kids were to come to the water.

Don Riepe, Barbara Cohen and Mickey Cohen of American Littoral Society's Northeast Chapter led the students in an environmental education class along the bay. Students left the park with specimens of marine life they collected during the day to study in class.

The day was organized by the Rockaway Waterfront Alliance to bring the students to public spaces just walking distance from their school, in support of the Mayor's PLANYC 2030 initiative to encourage use of public space accessible both on foot and via public transportation.

Mickey Cohen shows students how to hold nets for seining. Mickey Cohen shows students how to hold nets for seining. "Having both the Atlantic Ocean and Jamaica Bay accessible to the students just outside most local schools gives Rockaway students a huge advantage to use the waterfront for educational purposes that many young people in other parts of the country do not have," said Jeanne DuPont, Director of Rockaway Waterfront Alliance. "We hope programs like these will help raise awareness of these natural resources, their accessibility and the many wonderful groups like American Littoral Society right here in our own community."

Students seining Jamaica Bay with nets. Students seining Jamaica Bay with nets.

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