Student Blogs

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Ecosystems!

Our ecocolumns are thriving! Well, some of them are....  We have live organisms such as mosquito fish, snails, duckweed, and elodea in our aquariums, and crickets, isopods, rye grass, alfalfa, and mustard seed in our terrariums. We have now connected the two in order to simulate a natural pond ecosystem similar to one we might find here in Vermont. We are learning about how a healthy ecosystem is self-sustaining with no human interference. Therefore, we don't take the dead or decaying matter out of our ecocolumn. In nature we don't remove these things. We are learning about how nature handle such things. For example, there are scavengers (the clean up crew) such as snails in the aquarium. We are also learning all about producers, consumers, and decomposers, and watching them at work in our ecocolumns. 

We are currently learning about the Chesapeake Bay ecosystem, and all the problems it is facing. The students in the class have been divided up into five different groups that live or work in the Chesapeake Bay area. These groups include dairy farmers, fishermen (watermen), recreational boaters, land developers, and ordinary citizens. The students are learning about how their group is contributing to the problems in the Chesapeake Bay, and they are coming up with solutions to the problems. They are learning that there are quite a few trade offs though. What might be good for the health of the bay's ecosystem, may not at all be good for their group's livelihood. Each group will present their findings to the 'Chesapeake Bay Environmental Board'. Stay tuned....
Ask your child about their group and how they plan to help the bay!