Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Gowanus Canal: 4th Graders Compare Then and Now

Armed with maps showing present day Brooklyn overlaid with a map of Brooklyn from the 18th century, 4th graders walked from our school over to the Gowanus Canal, stopping along the way to note the changes that have taken place over 300 years. Did you know that our neighborhood used to be a small peninsula with the Gowanus River as its eastern border? Wetlands and coastal forest gave way to brownstones, shops, and warehouse buildings. The river was shaped into a canal and the water became badly polluted. 

At each of our stops, the students wrote messages to passersby in chalk. Some were informative...

"Do what's right and don't break history!"

...and some were cautionary.

At the canal, we saw a strange structure floating in the water. What could it be for? Who made it? Why is it here?

We made sketches along with a list of our questions...

To be continued...

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