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The River Runs Through Us is a major project of the International Museum of Art & Science about the Rio Grande River. It seeks through play and exploration to raise public awareness about our water resources in the Valley. The River Runs Through Us is a bilingual, bi-national project that includes state-of-the-art exhibits, a science exploration lab, teacher training, RioScape Discovery Park and educational programming.

This project is supported in part by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the Meadows Foundation, McAllen Public Utility Board, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Houston Endowment.

Our Watershed, the Museum's first mobile hands-on exhibit about the river, recently traveled across the border to Mexico in a bi-national cooperative water education program held in the gymnasium of the Universidad Autonoma de Tamaulipas in Reynosa. The Universidad Mexico Americana del Norte (UMAN) sponsored and organized the bus transportation for the 4,200 primaria (elementary) students from 30 participating schools.

Approximately 200 student exhibit guides from 7 secundarias (high schools) participated assisted the younger students. All were trained by International Museum of Art & Science staff members Raquel Hinojosa (Outreach Manager) and Lisa Rangel (Outreach Assistant).

Partners in this project included the Universidad Autonama de Tamaulipas, Universidad Mexico Americana del Norte, the City of Reynosa, the State of Tamaulipas Department of Education (SECUDE), the Commission on Potable Water (COMAPA), and CIVER, an organization of universities and industry. The secundarias (high schools) providing volunteers included CETIS 71, CETIS 131, Colegio Reforma, Instituto Colon, COBAT #07, ETI #44 and Francisco J. Mumjica.

Our Watershed provides students with many unique activities:

A Rio Grande / Rio Bravo watershed map with postcards from all along the river, so students can learn about the people and places along the river.

A Soft Cube Floor Puzzle shows the river's history, bridges, ecosystem, wildlife areas and habitats.

A Photo Mural of the Rio Grande at Roma overlooking Miguel Alemande where students can use binoculars to find animal and plant species.

A Body Water Weight station, where students and discover how much water their bodies hold.

A Watershed Model that actually works. Students operate hand pumps located at river sources and study water flow into the Rio Grande and insert dams into the watershed model to experiment with the effects on water flow.

A Sharing the Water station, where students make decisions about water distribution among cities, farms, wildlife and industry.

A River Life area where students discover the wide variety of creatures that inhabit the river.

Web sites of interest:

Cool Science for Curious Kids at: www.hhmi.org/coolscience/

More science activities at: www.tryscience.com

Explore your world at: www.exploratorium.com

Visit a wonderful children's museum in Mexico at: www.csmas.com/papalote/ (Spanish)

Check out the U.S. Geological Survey's Water Science for Schools web site: http://water.usgs.gov/droplet

International Museum of Art & Science
(956) 682-1564