Irving Flood Control District Section III (IFCD 3) is a taxpayer-funded organization that oversees construction and maintenance of water management facilities in the Valley Ranch community. Its work is vital to safeguarding the people and property of Valley Ranch from flooding, but communicating IFCD 3’s role in the community and the importance of flood control can be a challenge due to the complex and technical nature of IFCD 3’s work.
IFCD 3 was in need of a creative way to share the purpose of their work in a way that was suitable and memorable for Valley Ranch residents of all ages, and Three Box was up for the challenge.
Three Box knew that even the most complex of subjects can be absorbed when they’re communicated at an elementary school level, and the best, most engaged audiences are often none other than elementary school students. After exploring the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) requirements to determine which grade level would be the best fit for a lesson on flood control, Three Box and IFCD 3 met with Valley Ranch Elementary (VRE) second grade teachers to better understand the specific curriculum requirements and learning objectives their second graders needed to meet so that we could build the best lesson possible.
Taking guidance from the VRE teachers, Three Box and IFCD 3 preapred an age-appropriate and compelling lesson about flood control, which was presented by an IFCD 3 engineer to an eager group of second grade students at VRE.
The next month, students took the information they learned back to the classroom and built their own flood control systems out of craft supplies (styrofoam cups, straws, tape, clay, etc.) donated by IFCD 3. VRE hosted a STEM challenge where the flood control projects were tested with real water and judged on effectiveness and creativity.
Throughout the process, Three Box took photos and produced videos of the presentation and STEM challenge to share with parents and on social media. We also pitched the collaboration story and visuals to local media outlets, which resulted in coverage in Irving’s primary newspaper, The Irving Rambler. Other results included:
Reached 100 second grade students who eagerly shared their new flood control knowledge with their parents and families, according to multiple reports from teachers and the school’s principal
Engaged 2,882 residents through IFCD 3 social media channels
Confirmed interest from VRE educators to continue the collaboration next year