Monday, August 3, 2015

Working with Teachers at the New England Aquarium

This week we had a terrific time presenting to teachers at the New England Aquarium.  They havea group of teacher in to learn about aquatic topics and the Aquarium staff graciously invited MOP in to talk about estuaries, oysters and oyster restoration. We also added in a bit about the extensive history of oysters in Massachusetts and Boston in particular. 

In short they were a terrific group. Right up there with the Boston Duck Tour drivers who were just as animated in a room as they are behind the wheel. the teachers were impressive and they inspired the realization that our children are in good hands.

Staff at the New England Aquarium
Aquarium Staff with hands on experiment
In addition to walking through the presentation that  can be found here. We also conducted a few experiments live. This was a bit like being in the classroom as there was a certain pressure to for them to work.  Fortunately, the oysters did filter out the phytoplankton (plants) and the zooplankton (animals) and the presence of oysters protected the steamer clam shell from dissolving in the vinegar while the control almost disappeared. Sadly the nitrogen experience was a total bust as neither the control jar or the jar with added nitrogen showed any change.
Mike Schmit passes a rock gunnel to an educator.

We also did a very short field trip to visually see some of the oysters that settle in with the oysters. This not only drew interest from the teachers, but also from many children who were nearby.

For other curriculums you can visit these at NOAA and New York's Billion Oyster Program.

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