An exciting new project is giving middle school students in the TST BOCES Turning Point program a hands-on learning opportunity as they help raise trout over the course of the school year.
The Trout in the Classroom project is a community-supported program facilitated by The Cayuga Lake Floating Classroom. Turning Point middle school teachers April Andersen and Elizabeth Tarbert were inspired to look into the project after participating in Cornell’s ASSET: Advancing Secondary Science Education Thru Tetrahymena program over the summer.
The Floating Classroom staff helped set up cold-water trout aquariums and then delivered eggs to Andersen’s class. Through this project, participating students will care for the trout, monitor aquarium water quality and learn about their environment.
“The Turning Point Middle School is excited about the engaging, hands-on collaboration with Cornell’s ASSET program and the Cayuga Lake Floating Classroom,” Andersen said.
Every week the classroom is visited by staff from the Floating Classroom or Biology students from Cornell.
Having recently hatched, the trout are currently alevin, a phase in which newly spawned trout still carry the yolk. In the spring, when the fish have reached the fingerling stage, students will take a field trip to release the trout into a local stream.