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Heritage Hydro Heroes survey Madison’s water supply

MADISON – Heritage Hydro Heroes, the robotics team at Heritage Elementary School, has designed a solution to a realistic problem involving science, technology, engineering and math or STEM concepts.

Their robotics work will be tested when the team competes in the First LEGO League competition on Dec. 2. In this league, teams work through robot challenges. This year, Heritage Hydro Heroes are participating in the hydrodynamics challenge.

Heritage Hydro Heroes’ coaches are Heritage Gifted Specialist Rachel Gibbs and first-grade teacher Meridith Sims.

“For the hydrodynamics challenge, our team must determine and improve upon a problem with the human water cycle,” Gibbs said. “After visiting our local Madison Water Treatment plant, our team discovered that our local water supply is running dangerously close to its limit.”

“Madison’s water treatment plant can pump out about 12 million gallons of water a day, and our usage is nearing that number,” Gibbs said.

The Heritage students also learned that the plant is working on an intake system to begin using water from the Tennessee River. “This (option) would remedy the problem; however, construction of this system has fallen far behind schedule, as the intake system was supposed to be completed in 2016 and is still not finished,” Gibbs said.

Heritage Hydro Heroes decided to help by promoting water conservation locally and globally. “They brainstormed how they could reach out to our local community and others in the world and make them understand the need for water conservation (and) how they can help with the problem,” Gibbs said.

The team developed a social media campaign titled “Heritage Hydro Heroes.” They created brief ‘tip videos’ for Twitter, Facebook and Instagram on easy ways to conserve local water. Their hashtag, #hydroheroic, will count people who view the videos.

“The team has only put out three of an estimated six videos so far and already have received over 300 views and close to 50 shares from our local community,” Gibbs said. “It’s evident they’re making an impact in this issue.”

To view the videos, visit tinyurl.com/heritagehydroheroes, Facebook/Heritage Hydro Heroes, Twitter #hydroheroic or Instagram.

The Heritage students also are working on completing water-themed challenges with their robot named #hydroheroic that they built and programmed. “On Dec. 2, our team will compete against other local teams, showcasing their project, robot and team-building skills,” Gibbs said.

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