Salmon in the Classroom comes to Boise-Eliot-Humboldt Elementary School!
Salmon stewardship through the eyes of student citizen scientists
Brought to you by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and our partners: the Black Parent Initiative, Oregon Youth Development Council, Portland Public Schools, & Boise-Eliot-Humboldt Elementary School
This innovative cross-curricular program involves students in raising salmon from egg to fry stage in their classroom. USFWS biologists work with teachers to provide guidance at each stage of growth, lead activities that build an understanding of salmon’s importance, and foster greater environmental stewardship.
For the first time, students in the Portland Public School system will have the opportunity to engage with Salmon in the Classroom. Thanks to the support of our partners in the Black Parent Initiative, Oregon Youth Development Council, and Portland Public Schools, USFWS is able to bring this program to the students at Boise-Eliot-Humboldt Elementary School in Northeast Portland, Oregon.
Using curriculum developed and implemented by the Columbia Gorge National Fish Hatchery Information and Education Office, Salmon in the Classroom is designed to meet the new standards of education of our schools and ties environmental education objectives to the Grade Level Expectations in all subject areas.
Research has now demonstrated learning in all basic subject areas is increased when the students can explore and apply skills in a real world context. With that in mind, our natural and human-made communities can be a laboratory for learning and the abundance of excellent environmental education curricula can bring excitement and positive results from the process. So come along with us as we explore this process with the student citizen scientists of Boise-Eliot-Humboldt Elementary School and stay tuned here for updates!
Learn more about educational opportunities: http://www.fws.gov/gorgefish/springcreek/education.html
Learn more about our partners:
The Black Parent Initiative: http://thebpi.org/
Oregon Youth Development Council: http://www.oregon.gov/gov/docs/OEIB/1aaYouthDevelopmentCouncilInfoSheet.pdf
Portland Public Schools: http://www.pps.k12.or.us/
Boise-Eliot/Humboldt Elementary School: http://www.pps.k12.or.us/schools/boise-eliot/
Special delivery! Staff from our Diversity & Civil Rights and Fisheries programs delivered about 150 salmon eggs to Boise-Eliot/Humboldt elementary school this morning.
Excited student scientists participated in discussion and asked questions about the life cycles of salmon which they will be able to observe firsthand over the next two and half months.
See more Salmon in the Classroom photos on our Flickr stream: http://www.flickr.com/photos/usfwspacific
The eggs have hatched! The tank at Bosie-Eliot/Humboldt Elementary School is now full of Salmon fry.
Salmon in the Classroom continues as students learned more about the early stages of the salmon life cycle. USFWS Education Specialist Cheri Anderson taught a lesson on the impact of watershed health on salmon populations.
Photo credit: USFWS
See more photos: http://goo.gl/686G0
Fashion a Fish
Jennifer Rowlen & Cheri Anderson from the Office of Information & Education for the Columbia River Gorge National Fish Hatchery Comlex led the “Fashion a Fish” lesson as part of the Salmon in the Classroom program at Boise-Eliot/Humboldt.
Fashion a Fish is a creative art lesson where students create a “fish” with unique adaptations and the habitat they need to survive in using those special adaptions.
Students work individually or in teams to create the fish and the habitats.
A student shows off the unique fish he created as a way to learn about the adaptions fish need to make to survive and thrive in various habitats.
Photo credit: Pat Edwards/USFWS
Hands on Science
As the eager students waited for their fish to grow, USFWS fish biologists visited the school teaching lessons on everything from watersheds, to fish dissection. The fish dissection portion was a particularly big hit among the students – what could be more exciting than the icky, stinky insides of a fish?
One student – Malachi Spinks, nicknamed “Dr. Spinks” by his classmates hopes to be a fish biologist in the future. He spent the lesson leading his peers in identifying each organ of the fish. The night before, Malachi found and completed an online fish dissection module to be better prepared. How did Malachi become so interested in fish? “My dad always used to cook fish when I was growing up, and he let me help him.” Malachi shared. A little spark can carry a child’s love for nature a long way. A night of family bonding, some sweating in the kitchen and a delicious meal as the reward, and Malachi was hooked!
Warm weather and an absence of rain greeted us along with three busloads of excited elementary school students at Drano Lake in the Gorge the morning of March 13. About 100 fourth and fifth graders gathered to say a final good-bye to the fish they have raised for the past 70 days as part of the USFWS Salmon in the Classroom program.
Thanks to the innovative curriculum developed by the Columbia River Gorge NFH I&E program and the collaboration of our partners at The Oregon Youth Development Council, The Black Parent Initiative, and Portland Public Schools, these student scientists had a chance to observe and learn about the life cycles of these fish and the important of ecosystem health. This is the first time the Salmon in the Classroom has been taught in a Portland Public School and plenty of media outlets were on hand to watch as the students released hundreds of Chinook salmon fry, toured the facilities, fed fish, and took a guided nature walk.