EACH STUDENT is asked to come to the symposium pre-pared to participate in one of the projects described below. These projects provide a way for teachers to integrate their preparations for the symposium experience into their classroom curriculum.

Students who select the Art Gallery or Scientific Research options, will bring their materials to display in the symposium display area.

Students who select the Issues Forum for their student project, will be able to present their position paper at the symposium in front of other students who selected the same option.

Students who select the Poetry/Prose/Short Story will also be able to read their work to other students who selected their same option.

Students who choose the Great Lakes Quiz Bowl will be assigned to a team of 5 players where they will participate in several rounds. Playoffs will be held and teams will compete for the title of Great Lakes Wizard.


Artwork must be created by the student using Lake Superior or its watershed resources for inspiration. Students should only work from photographs, if they have taken the photo themself.

1) Acceptable media for artwork are: drawings, paintings, photo-graphs, sculpture, or mixed media. Sculptural pieces may not be larger than 18x18x18.

2) Two-dimensional artwork must be matted, mounted, or framed with a hanging device already attached (i.e. the artwork should have a hook, wire, or string attached to the back).

3) Artwork must be clearly labeled with: first and last name, school, address, telephone number, title of artwork, and medium.


Students may prepare written position papers and give brief presentations (3-5 minutes) on a topic relating to the future of the Lake Superior or Great Lakes watersheds. Students may select their own topics on which to write a position paper.

Possible topics are:

  • Point and non-point source pollution
  • Green-belt zoning
  • Land-use planning
  • Toxic discharges (metals, pesticides, herbicides, industrial chemicals)
  • Diversion of Great Lakes water
  • Exotic species
  • Global warming
  • Sport fisheries
  • Water-level fluctuations
  • In their position paper, students should state the following:

    1. What is the problem/issue?
    2. Why is this a problem/issue?
    3. What are the different perspectives on this issue?
    4. How does the student feel that this issue can be solved?

    Papers should be 3-5 pages, double-spaced, and typed. Students will be scheduled to present their papers to other students at the symposium.


    Students may submit poetry, prose or a story that relates to the Great Lakes/Lake Superior watershed, to share with other symposium participants. A special time will be set aside for this sharing. In addition, students' work will be compiled into a book, which will be on display during the symposium weekend.

    Guidelines for Submissions

    1) Send your submission by May 1, 2001 (postmark) to: Lake Superior Youth Symposium Center for Science and Environmental Outreach Michigan Technological University 1400 Townsend Drive, Houghton, MI 49931-1295

    2) Photocopied work is preferred, as we cannot be responsible for originals.

    3) You may have drawings/illustrations accompany your work.

    4) Write in one of the following genres:

    Express a moment in nature, daily sights and occurrences, ideas and feelings with a poem. Describe a clear picture of a poignant moment with a form of poetry, haiku, free verse, diamante, acrostic, or windspark poem. The image and ideas are more important than the structure.

    Organize your thoughts on a particular aspect of the Great Lakes and submit your essay to share with others. Or you may submit a page or two from a nature journal or science log that you write and illustrate that contains your observations and perceptions about the natural environment.

    Write a story based on your own experiences with the Great Lakes. Imagine what it was like living near the Great Lakes one hundred years ago, or what it will be like to live here one hundred years from now. Stories should not exceed 5 pages, double-spaced.


    Students who choose this option, will be placed on a team with students from diverse locations around Lake Superior and the Great Lakes Basin. Students will then participate in a quiz bowl-style game that asks teams a wide variety of factual and problem-solving questions about water resources, Lake Superior, and the Great Lakes. Bone up on your facts!!

    History/cultural heritage
    Geography (be familiar with the Lake Superior Circle Tour map)
    Environmental law & policy

    Some websites to consult for information:
    The Great Lakes Commission
    The Great Lakes National Program Office
    (or consult publication: The Great Lakes: An Environmental Atlas and Resource Book)


    This project option provides an opportunity for a student, group of students, or entire class of students to share their research, either in the field or the laboratory, on a particular topic related to Lake Superior or the Great Lakes. The display should be a presentation of the research process and findings.

    Display Unit Projects should fit in a space enclosed by a standard-size display board (32" high x 48" wide) that is free-standing. The following information should be on the display unit and presented in a NEAT and CONCISE manner.

    Title: : Neatly lettered and easy-to-read.

    Name of Student(s), Grade, School, and School Address

    Purpose: The problem stated in the form of a question, with the independent and dependent variables identified. The dependent variable is the outcome or measure of change, and the independent variable is the variable that is changed by the experimenter and tested. For example, in a stream monitoring study, students could collect data on the diversity of stream macroinvertebrates (dependent variable) collected at different habitats (independent variable) on the stream.

    Hypothesis: An educated guess of how the experiment will turn out, worded in terms of the independent and dependent variable. For example, the greatest diversity of stream macroinvertebrates (or the greatest concentration of oxygen) will be found in a stream riffle habitat.

    Materials List: Complete list of materials used to conduct the experiment, including amounts.

    Procedure: List of steps followed in conducting the experiment to test the hypothesis. The constant variables and control should be noted. Constant variables are conditions of the experiment that are kept the same. Control is a standard to test your experimental results against.

    Results: What did the student(s) learn during and after their investigation. Photographs, charts, graphs, data or drawings that support the information in the project should be displayed.

    Conclusion: A statement that summarizes the investigation and addresses the original purpose. It should include any discoveries that were not originally planned and a discussion of potential errors, plus a description of what one would do to extend, or improve on, this research project.