Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Survival Polls Are In!

At the start of each year, we ask students to consider the changes and challenges that their hatching trout will need to survive as the grow.  Students vote on how many trout they expect to survive until release-day in the spring, starting with about 100 eggs.  Here are results from participating classes this fall - we'll see how it goes!

Thursday, November 21, 2013

WOW! Three Projects Funded!

We have learned that three -count 'em, THREE- teacher grant proposals submitted to IPEI were funded this fall.  These are all independently conceived extensions of the basic Trout in the Classroom program, developed by our teachers.  Very proud of the fact that TIC is providing a foundation for cascading enrichment opportunitiesCongratulations!

Anna Chapman, Caroline Elementary:  "Brookies and Browns".   Students will raise both species and utilize their new stream-side classroom on 6-Mile Creek to look back into local history, exploring land-use and stream impacts, and also to look forward, exploring the potential impact of climate change on stream habitat.  Cayuga Nature Center is also a partner. 

Jen Wilkie, South Hill Elementary:  "Using Scientific Illustration to Learn about Trout, and Contribute to our Local Community”   Camille Doucet will work with students and staff to create trout illustrations, convert them to greeting cards and raise funds for a local charity.

Jayne Port, Belle Sherman Elementary:  "Six Mile Creek and Me".  Students will enjoy themed books from Buffalo Street Books, and create interpretive maps of Six Mile Creek with the help of "Pond and Stream Safari" author, Karen Edelstein. 

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Brook Trout eggs arrived!


My class of 24 5th graders and I received our packet of 150 Brook Trout eggs and all but three survived the trip from the Morrisville hatchery in tact. So far, so good!  Our tank is up and running, the chiller is chilling, the filter filtering and the bubbler is bubbling. Our pH is currently 8.2. We enjoyed and were informed by a presentation and introduction by Bill Foster and Cory V. from the Floating Classroom. And this year we will be posting blogspots asoften as our busy school day schedule allows. We're very excited ...and we appreciate all the support we receive from all the trout people in our lives.  Thank you!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Brown Trout In The House!

Eggs Hatching - Cayuga Heights Elementary. 
Brown Trout eggs were delivered from the NY DEC Hatchery in Bath, NY on October 15.  Our thanks to Ken Osika and the crew over there for all their help! 

Our eggs hatched quickly, and students at South Hill, Caroline, Enfield, BJM, Belle Sherman, Cayuga Heights & Fall Creek Elementary Schools in the Ithaca District, along with Newfield and Groton Middle Schools, and A.J. Smith Elementary in Union Springs, are using digital projectors and microscopes to observe the rapidly developing trout alevins

Trout Alevin at 1 week.  Yolk sack
and circulatory system visible.
Groton Middle School.
Brook trout eggs will be coming soon to Dryden Elementary, Lansing Middle and High School, Northeast Elementary in Ithaca, and to Cayuga Nature Center. 

Monday, November 4, 2013

New Book Alert

Dear Educators and Colleagues,

I am happy to announce that Laurie Rubin has written a book!  She will be celebrating publication of To Look Closely: Science and Literacy in the Natural World on Sunday, December 8, 4-6PM at the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology, 159 Sapsucker Woods Road. Refreshments, book signing and a slideshow depicting eight years of stream study at Cayuga Heights Elementary School.  Laurie was one of the best, and one of the first brave teachers to give Trout in the Classroom a whirl.  For a sneak preview from Stenhouse Publishers, click on the image below.   ~ Bill F.

To Look Closely

Friday, October 25, 2013

Innovation In Science Teaching

For the second year running, the ICSD teacher receiving the Raymond C. Loehr award for Innovation in Science Teaching was a Trout in the Classroom host!  Check out video from IPEI here.  We'd like to think that our program and the efforts of everyone involved contributed in at least a small way to their success.  Congratulations to Jen Wilkie (2012) and  Jen Emerson (2013)!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

BJM Stream Studies - April, 2013

4th Graders at BJM learned to assess the health of a stream by looking at the insects and other INVERTEBRATES which live there.  Using dichotomous keys and their knowledge of insect anatomy, these young scientists identified 26 different types of insect larvae- and a few crayfish- living in samples collected from Enfield Creek.

Then we fed a few to our hungry trout!

Very Cool!  Thanks Ms. Barley for setting this up!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Charting Trout Growth

LACS interns Francesca and Eddie help students plot the growth of their trout..
 Students remove individual trout for measurement, placing them in a petri dish, over graph paper.

 Minimum, Maximum and Average sizes are plotted every two-three weeks.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Ithaca Fishing Day was Great!

Had a blast at Ithaca Fishing day this year!  Thanks to all our teachers and students for their artistic and scientific contributions to our Trout in the Classroom station.  Great to see so many of you there!  Click on the image to see a few more pictures....

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Lighting Experiment

Fall Creek Elementary students have decided to embark on an experiment to set up two different habitats for their trout.  We installed a tank divider, and used dark stones and paper backing to create a low-constrast habitat on the left side.  We'll see what happens....

Monday, February 4, 2013

Big Hit at BJM Science Fair!

4th graders at Beverly J. Martin Elementary (Ithaca NY) did an outstanding job this past Friday at BJM's annual Science Fair! 

This year's theme was "Recognizing Relationships" and students used trout fry from their classroom to help other students students explore ways in which zooplankton, trout and people are related.  Here and below, students are preparing wet slides of the zooplankton Daphnia magnus for viewing under the microscopes.

Daphnia are great food for small fish, including trout- which makes them part of a food chain that includes humans.  Daphnia and trout, alike, also depend on clean, healthy water supplies- just like we do!

Below, a student prepared to watch the food chain relationship unfold, as she feeds daphnia to our hungry trout!


Friday, January 18, 2013

"Live Food" Experiments Underway!

Our trout are getting their first taste of live food this month, as students ask the question, "Will my trout eat living food?"  Following Scientific Method, students are investigating the response of trout to the presence of living zooplankton, called Daphnia, making careful observations during a five minute experiment. 

Here is an example of initial data.  More will be available shortly!

Daphnia are provided, courtesy of the Nelson Hairston Jr. Lab of Evolutionary Biology at Cornell.  Here's lab manager Lindsay Shafner providing a new batch of these critters.  Our thanks to her, and to Prof. Hairston for their support!