Cascadia Conservation District

Cascadia CD has moved to 1350 McKittrick Street, Wenatchee, WA 98801

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Kids In the Creek

Kids In the Creek

kids walking in creek with waders

Kids in the Creek is…

  • A hands-on, interactive, engaging experience for high school students
  • A field day investigating the stream ecosystem
  • Spending the day with professional resource specialists
  • All about partnerships: agencies, schools, and communities
  • Fun!

It all began with…

… a small group of committed volunteers serving on the Board of Supervisors for the Chelan County Conservation District in central Washington State. They were concerned about how rapid growth and development would affect local water quality. They secured funding from the Washington Department of Ecology to monitor water quality, and then highlighted which watersheds could benefit most from improved management. The Wenatchee River Watershed made it on the list. A Technical Advisory Team formed, consisting of resource professionals. To fulfill the grant proposal, several subcommittees were next organized, including the Education Committee.The Education Committee consisted of resource specialists from the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, U.S. Forest Service, Natural Resources Conservation Service, Chelan County Conservation District, and science and Future Farmers of America (FFA) teachers from local high schools. They met in 1992, adopted the hands-on field experience idea, and combined it with the subject of water. Hence, the birth of the Kids in the Creek program. The first all day field trip was in 1993, near Leavenworth, WA, on beautiful Icicle Creek, tributary to the Wenatchee River.Since then, hundreds of students from distant watersheds and many more resource agencies and private companies have joined this high quality educational effort. Throughout the years, the program has developed and evolved into what it is today. The basic tenets still remain: To connect students with aquatic and riparian ecosystems for an understanding of watersheds and the critical role of human land management activities.

How Is Kids in the Creek Organized?

Program Basics

The activities are designed for high school students. Area schools are invited each year to apply for the program. Once approved and notified, the classroom teacher attends a training on the program and the curriculum. Teachers are asked to do pre- and post- work activities with students. They are to ensure that students and chaperones understand their responsibilities. This procedure may be formalized by using the application, contract, and teacher planning forms found in the Appendix.


Participants work in small groups led by resource specialists. For a quality experience, groups should contain 12 students or less per station at any one time. Groups with names like Mayflies, Riffles, Fry, Salmonids, Shredders, and Cedars, rotate through each of the six stations until all groups converge at Watershed Wonders.