Sacramento, Shingle Springs students win divisions in Nature Bowl

Phoebe Hearst Elementary School in Sacramento and the Shingle Springs K-8 campus of the California Montessori Project won first-place awards in the 30th annual Nature Bowl finals, held Saturday at California State University, Sacramento.

Phoebe Hearst took the top prize in the third- and fourth-grade division in the finals. The Shingle Springs campus won the fifth- and sixth-grade division, said Bruce Forman of the lead organizer, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.

Overall, 108 teams competed in eight semifinals in the Sacramento Valley and the Sierra Nevada from late March to early May. The 24 teams competing Saturday engaged in contests such as games of eco-Jeopardy, presenting “enviromercials,” conducting nature investigations and preparing watershed models.

The top three teams in each of the grade divisions are invited to the American River Trout Hatchery in early June to observe trout loading. Students then will participate in releasing fish in the Upper American River, Forman said.

The Nature Bowl’s sponsors include the American River Nature Center, Placer Nature Center, California Waterfowl Association, Calaveras County Office of Education, New Melones Lake-Reclamation, Friends of Stone Lakes Refuge, Yolo Basin Foundation, Sutter Resource Conservation, The Wildlife Society, American Fisheries Society, the CSUS Center For Mathematics & Science Education, American River Natural History Association and California Wildlife Foundation.