E.S.S.R.E  2007




    The 2007 Environmental Science Summer Research Experience for Young Women  was held at Roland Park Country School this summer from July 9th to the 27th. 9th, 10th and for the first time, 11th graders formed the lively group of eleven interns who joined together from Roland Park Country School, Maryvale, Notre Dame Prep, and Baltimore Polytechnic Institute to explore the backwoods on Roland Park Country School's campus. In three different groups the interns studied sites 2,3 and 4 representing the different microclimates found behind the school.                                  

  Mr. Brock's group

Lauren's group 

Lily's group  

    On the first day the curious interns began their journey with ESSRE by going out to their respective sites to plot out their research sites and divide them into quadrats using tape measures, compasses, flags and poles to outline their site.







The 2007 interns successfully completed their biota survey despite the ever growing quantity of mosquitoes in site 2, the steep hillside at site 3, and the dead raccoons found in swamp-like site 4.

In these sites the interns took countless soil samples, dug arthropods, planted algae slides and identified the plants growing within their site.         

 Collecting Soil Samples




Digging Arthropods

 Identifying Plants

     Then the groups came together in friendly competition to complete soil textures; count algae, protozoa, bacteria, and fungi; and perform chemical tests.

After the data was collected the girls began t-testing and using their calculators to perform various statistical analyses.

Using their collected data the interns began to explore anomalies in the data. With the help of Mr. Brock the girls used the anomalies that interested them to create their own experiment.

Research Questions


How do mold levels affect the quantity of iron in the soil?

by: Jenn Hearn, Lauren Pratt, and Patty Redfield

( web lesson 1 & research paper 1)



How will the amount of leaching affect the iron levels of soil?

by: Allie Barnes, Mellissa Goldman, Emily McWilliams, and Julianne Payne

( web lesson 2 & research paper 2 )




How does runoff impact the nitrogen cycle and therefore the number of protozoa and bacteria in the soil?

by: Darriel Hawkins, Kit Hunt, Seanna Hunt, and MariaLisa Itzoe

( web lesson 3 & research paper 3)



See Us In Action! Just Click On the Gazebo For The ESSRE 2007 Slideshow!

 If you have any questions feel free to contact the Founding Project Director by e-mail at STEMteacherEmeritus.rpcs@gmail.com  or directly at 410/323-5500 ext 5500. Contactcurrent project director, charyl Carmona, at carmonac@rpcs.org

Annotated Bibliography of Soil Ecology Websites

Soil Ecology Experiments for the Classroom

E.S.S.R.E. Research Findings & Results

Microclimate Data Bases

Biota Survey Protocal

ESSRE Homepage