Lake County Solid Waste

Management District

Merrillville Municipal Complex · 7820 Broadway · Merrillville, IN  46410
219-769-3820 · FAX: 219-769-3890

ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION CENTER
Destination: 2405 Calumet Avenue * Hammond, IN 46327
8:00a.m. - 4:00p.m. Monday through Friday
Lunch times vary daily - please call ahead



Photo courtesy of Lake County Convention and Visitors Bureau


ReUZ Room 8:00a.m. - 4:00p.m. The ReUZ room will be closed MONDAYS & TUESDAYS. It will now be open WEDNESDAY, THURSDAY, FRIDAY ONLY FOR DROP OFF AND PICK UP OF ITEMS - DONATIONS CAN BE LEFT IN FOYER BUT NOT OUTSIDE OF THE BUILDING!  Please call ahead.

Thank you for your continued interest in our environmental education programs. We are in receipt of your faxed request form and are currently filling in the calendar for the 2013-2014 school year. At this time, we are experiencing some turnover in staff and we thank you for your patience as you wait to hear the status of your request. If you have been scheduled for a September 2013 program, you have already been notified.

I would also like to take this opportunity to update you all on our new hours of operation:
Environmental Education Center, Hammond 8:00a.m. - 4:00p.m. Monday through Friday, lunch times vary daily - please call ahead
 

What do we have at the Environmental Education Center?

Inside our eye-catching building we have a classroom where we conduct environmental education programs for field trip groups from all over Lake County. We have a 2-story tree slide where kids can actually spiral down the center of the tree trunk! We have Indiana’s first indoor trout stream stocked with plenty of happy Rainbow Trout fish. In fact, they are so happy here they have been known to reproduce in years prior (something this fish species isn’t known to do in captivity). Last, but certainly not least, we house our famous ReUZ Room. The ReUZ Room is a big room filled with reusable items/”garbage” that have been donated to us by the community. Non-profit groups and organizations can come in and take what they need for arts, crafts, activities, etc. We weigh the items that leave the facility so we have a better grasp on how much “garbage” we are diverting from the landfills. Call 219-853-2420 for more information about this great resource! It is FREE to visit and walk-ins are always welcome! Come check us out today!

Why is there an Indoor Rainbow Trout Stream at the EEC?

Rainbow Trout are very important to the environment because they are a biological indicator species. They are intolerant of pollution, therefore, they only live and survive in non-polluted clean waters. Our Trout Stream Exhibit displays and explains the dangers of different point and non-point sources of pollution that can damage an aquatic ecosystem such as the use of fertilizers, pesticides, and herbicides, road water runoff, factory discharge, illegal garbage dumping, etc. Come in and learn about keeping a safe and healthy environment today!

Where do we get our Rainbow Trout?

Every year we conduct a unique environmental education program called Trout in the Classroom which allows students to “adopt” and care for young rainbow trout in their schools for several months.  Students receive the tank, supplies, and trout eggs and begin care of the trout through their various developmental stages. 

During periodic site visits, a Trout in the Classroom coordinator monitors the condition of the tank and engages the students in related educational activities such as the life cycle and basic anatomy of the rainbow trout.  Once the trout grow to fingerling size (about 3 inches), they are ready to be released into Indiana's first and only indoor trout stream, located at the Environmental Education Center in Hammond. 

Registration for field trips opens April 23rd each year. If the 23rd falls on a weekend, registration opens the following Monday.

Registration closes August 1st each year. Schedule by FAX ONLY. Field trips begin no earlier than 10:00a.m. and students will load the bus for departure at 1:00p.m. Lunch facilities are available for groups to eat their sack-lunches.

AMPHIBIANS ***NEW***
GOAL: Understand the relationship between amphibians and a healthy aquatic environment.
DESCRIPTION: Students will participate in hands-on activities in order to understand the importance of bioindicators and clean water.
TARGET AGE: K-8

SOMETHING FISHY
GOAL
: Experience a fully-functioning indoor trout stream and participate in hands-on water management education.
DESCRIPTION: Activities are tailored developmentally and range from trout stream introductions to complex water quality testing.
TARGET AGE: Pre-K through High School

TALKING TRASH
GOAL: Get green! Are you recycling correctly in your neighborhood?
DESCRIPTION: Recycling games are varied according to learning level and range from sorting recyclables to learning to "buy recycled."
TARGET AGE: Pre-K through High School

Nature's Recyclers
GOAL: Meet the redworms, nature's recyclers, and discover composting as a cure for food and yard waste concerns.
DESCRIPTION: Students learn redworm anatomy, composting basics, how to build a worm compost bin, and of course, handle live redworms!
TARGET AGE: Pre-K through High School



A Nature Walk
GOAL: Visit George Lake, located directly east of the center, and learn the plants that call this wetlands home.
DESCRIPTION: A paved trail lined with wetlands plants, leads the group to several lookout points of the lake. Students discover names and interesting characteristics of a variety of plant species. (seasonal & weather permitting)
TARGET AGE: Pre-K through High School

H2OHHH!
GOAL: Celebrate the unique characteristics of water. Discuss important uses and "recyclability" of the wet stuff!
DESCRIPTION: This program is adapted for various levels and includes games and hands-on demonstrations.
TARGET AGE: Pre-K through High School

Animal Survival
GOAL: Demonstrate the effects of a highly industrialized region on animal populations.
DESCRIPTION: At each learning level students experience animal survival needs, discussing species interdependence and habitats.
TARGET AGE: Pre-K through High School

Natural Resources
GOAL: Explore uses, conservation and preservation of the materials we take from the Earth.
DESCRIPTION: Age-appropriate games, experiments, and simulations demonstrate the roles of natural resources in our daily lives.
TARGET AGE: Pre-K through High School

REUSE CRAFTS
GOAL: Demonstrate the importance and benefits of reusing. Create a craft using reusable materials.
DESCRIPTION: Students tour ReUZ Room located inside the Environmental Education Center and make a craft to take home.
TARGET AGE: Pre-K through High School




 


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