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Summer SAVY Session 2, Day 3 – Ecological Expedition

Posted by on Wednesday, June 21, 2023 in blog, SAVY.

Day 3: SAVY may be halfway over, but it keeps getting better! This morning students were asked to write a proposal for the mayor! Here was their challenge!  

“Your school needs a new park. The mayor has said that he will give you the space needed for the new park from government-owned land. To build the park, your school will need to fill in a pond and build on top of it. The principal has decided to let the student council vote on if it’s worth losing the school pond for a new playground. Students use the pond to do science experiments, and many classrooms have adopted some of the animals as class pets.  

Create a proposal for building or not building the new school park that uses the science analysis wheel as evidence and proposes a solution to this problem.” 

Students followed an outline for their proposals that included claims, reasons, evidence, and counterarguments! Seven people chose to keep the pond, while two people built on top of it. Ask your scholar about their proposals and new playground blueprints! Some of the presentations convinced others to switch “sides” and change their points of view!  

After lunch, we had a special visitor from the zoo! Sam Melber, from the Nashville Zoo, came to talk about her job as a Zookeeper and work with ambassador animals! Sam spent over an hour talking about her passion for animals and her journey to her position as an Outreach Educator! The students could not stop asking her questions! It was exciting to have them ask so many questions that connected to what we’ve been learning about in class. Tomorrow we will be talking about the pros and cons of zoos as well as building animal enrichments! We learned a lot of zoo “secrets” today! Ask your child about the zoo’s plans to add more animals!   

Finally, our afternoon was spent being mathematicians! Students debated the question, “Should humans help control the growth or decline of animal populations?” Today and tomorrow, we will be studying invasive species. The United States and the Department of Wildlife need our students’ help in analyzing how to stop the wild boar population from growing exponentially! Through games, videos, maps, graphs, and complex questions, students will learn more about the effects of these aggressive creatures, so they can propose solutions for this problem. They will be given some “top secret” information tomorrow that will help them make brochures to inform and advise others on how to stop this problem! 

Beth Waight