Love of science grows in UCS classrooms
Love of science grows in UCS classrooms
Posted on 05/10/2018
Three students with containers of SalmonAn excitement for science grew this year in two classrooms at Malow Junior High School and Schuchard Elementary. 

Students raised more than 514 salmon in their classrooms this year that were released back to nature earlier this month. 

More than 200 students from Bethany Pierzecki’s 7th grade science classes at Malow and 58 from Brent Fortier’s 4th grade class at Schuchard released the salmon they hatched in their classrooms. 

In October, each classroom received approximately 200 Chinook Salmon eggs that the students watch hatch and develop into smolt.  

Michigan’s Department of Natural Resources (DNR) states that, “Caring for the young salmon encourages students to think and care about conservation, and creates a connection between caring for their fish and caring for their local environment.” 

It also connects in many parts to schools’ current curriculum, from cell development to life cycles and habitat niches just to name a few.  More than 22,000 students in Michigan participate in this hands-on science program.

“It was so much fun! I learned how to care for the salmon,” said Malow seventh grader Taylor Marsh said.  “I’m glad we got to participate in raising them and the release!”  

Aiden Jory, also a 7th grader at Malow added: “Releasing was the best part because they have a renewed chance at life they would not get if they stayed in the classroom tank.  I had my whole family there helping—even my younger cousin loved it!”
 Teachers said the Salmon project brought science to life for students. 

“We can teach about chemical reactions with balancing and testing the tank for pH and ammonia, plus use the life cycle when it comes to our cells unit, and even monitor the weather and temperature as the days approach our release—all part of the 7th grade curriculum throughout the year,” Pierzecki said. 

 Applications for classrooms interested in the program are accepted from January to April.  Please see the Michigan DNR/Salmon in the Classroom webpage for more information.