Learning grows at Harvey Elementary

Harvey Elementary students have a growing interest in science and the environment, thanks to nearly 200 new friends in a class aquarium.

Beth Swartz's fourth graders in are taking part in the Salmon In the Classroom program, an innovative project that allows students raise the small fish from eggs and release them in the Spring.

"We are learning how to take care of the fish," student Brianna Rebar said. "I think it is a very fun, educational experience." 

The Salmon in the Classroom program is sponsored by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. The DNR provided Swartz with the eggs, and a sponsor - Trout Unlimited - provided the equipment to raise them in the Harvey Elementary classroom. 

The trout first arrived in the classroom as eggs and students have been taking turns monitoring the water quality and creating an appropriate living environment. 

"We left for a special and when we came back they were hatching," student Jack Costandi said. "Everyone was really excited."

Now that they have hatched, the students are also making sure they receive the appropriate amount of food. 

Swartz said the project is teaching students about the life cycle and allowing them to develop higher order inquiry skills. Students are questioning different aspects of the project and are encouraged to post thoughts on a classroom blog. 

Eventually, the salmon will outgrow their tank when they reach about two inches and will be released into the Clinton River.

You can learn more the class project by following their blog - http://salmoninclassroom.blogspot.com/

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