DOINews: Reclamation Visits the Washington International School

Last edited 09/05/2019

Group photo in classroom: Back row, from left: teacher Sue Anderson and Reclamation PAO Lauren Lambert; front row: four fifth-graders.
Reclamation public affairs specialist Lauren Lambert (left) poses for a photo with Washington International School teacher Sue Anderson and four of her fifth-grade students during her visit to the D.C. school on March 21. Photo by Reclamation.
Reclamation public affairs specialist Lauren Lambert sitting at table with four fifth-graders.
Reclamation public affairs specialist Lauren Lambert responds to questions from Washington International School fifth-graders on March 21. The topic: water scarcity in the Southwest. Photo by Reclamation.

Are you smarter than a fifth-grader? Reclamation public affairs specialist Lauren Lambert may have asked herself this question while on her way to visit fifth-graders at the Washington International School in the D.C. neighborhood of Georgetown on March 21.

Reclamation had the opportunity to go to the Washington International School and sit down with four students to discuss one of the most important topics of our time - water scarcity in the Southwest. The students began their six-week water-scarcity study in February, collecting data, interviewing subject matter experts and collaborating among one another under the overall topic related to How We Share the Planet.

On April 4, findings are presented at an exhibition, which is the culminating event in the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Program for fifth-grade students. This event is very similar to a science fair, where students are able to apply the scientific method to conduct independent research and later display findings in an exhibit and submit a written report.

Lambert, with the help of Deputy Chief of Public Affairs Pete Lucero, fielded questions on ways Reclamation determines who gets water, how water-scarcity problems change over time, how people who live in eastern United States can help those in the Southwest, how Reclamation finds solutions to water supply and demand gaps and several other water-related questions.

On March 20, Secretary Sally Jewell issued a Secretarial Order illustrating the goals of the Department of the Interior's Youth Initiative, encouraging young Americans to play, learn, serve and work in the outdoors. Visiting the Washington International School and providing students with information that meets their educational goals was just one example of how Reclamation plans to implement the youth initiative. Students were not only able to get answers to complex questions in order to fulfill their project requirements, but also learned first-hand factual information about the largest wholesaler of water in the country.

The Washington International School is located in in Northwest, Washington, D.C., and was founded in 1966 to meet the educational needs of Washington's International community and American families seeking a rigorous international education. To learn more about Reclamation's youth opportunities, please visit:

Submitted by: Lauren Lambert, Reclamation

March 28, 2014

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