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Mr. Donnelly from Brighton MA is requesting Supplies through DonorsChoose, the #1 classroom funding site for teachers.

Aquaponics at Boston Green Academy

My students need hydroton as a medium for growing plants, rapid rooter plant plugs to help germinate their seeds and 55 gallon drums to build the aquaponics systems.

  • $1,240 goal

This project expired on February 4, 2016.

Hooray! This project is fully funded

My Students

I want my students to build their own "life engines" that will help them understand the biogeochemical cycles that govern our existence. My goal is for them to understand this John Muir quote: "When you try to pick out anything by itself you find it hitched to everything else in the Universe."

Boston Green Academy is an in-district charter in the Boston Public Schools.

We welcome diverse students of all abilities, educate and empower them to succeed in college and career, and prepare them to lead in the sustainability of our community and world. We currently enroll 510 students in grades 6-12, 85 of whom are in the 10th grade and taking environmental science. We accept students from all over Boston, but we target our outreach to students living in underserved neighborhoods. Our students’ demographics are: 55% African American, 32% Latino, 7% White, 4% Asian Americans, and 2% Native American or Other. In addition, 83% live at or below the federal poverty line, 33% are students with disabilities, 13.3% are English Language learners, and an additional 19.7% are students for whom English is not their first language. 100% of our students receive free lunch. This project will help my students become "Smarter, Together".

My Project

Aquaponics is an excellent way to teach my students about the biogeochemical cycles that govern our very existence on Earth. These fundamental processes play a foundational role in ecosystem ecology, an area of study on which we focus intensely in our 10th grade Environmental Science course. Providing my students the opportunity to build these mini-ecosystems will give them a project based learning opportunity that allows them the ability to interact with the "engines" that keeps life going on our planet. Aquaponics uses 90% less water than traditional agriculture and virtually no pesticides or inorganic fertilizers. These realities will allow us to have valuable discussions around how humans affect the environment with our current industrialized food systems. We will also learn about food equity, food deserts and nutrition all while having some healthy green snacks along the way. This grant would go a long way towards providing my students a most valuable learning experience.

Many of my students who do not excel in traditional classroom settings thrive during project-based learning.

Limited budgets make it hard to consistently provide these real-world learning experiences, but if funded, my students will build and maintain an aquaponics system, which will: 1) increase their understanding of biogeochemical cycles; 2) develop critical thinking and problem solving skills; 3) enhance collaboration skills; and 4) enhance communication and leadership skills.

Mr. Donnelly
Grades 9-12
Nearly all students from low‑income households

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4 donors4 donors have given to this project.

This project will reach 85 students.

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Where Your Donation Goes

Materials Cost Quantity Total
Mother Earth Hydroton, 50-Liter • Amazon Business $62.96 6 $377.76
Eagle 1656BLK Black Drum with Poly Lever Lock Ring, 55 gal Capacity • Amazon Business $80.42 4 $321.68
EcoPlus 728305 Eco 264 Submersible Pump, 290GPH • Amazon Business $20.55 5 $102.75
General Hydroponics Rapid Rooter Replacement Plugs 50 count • Amazon Business $14.64 5 $73.20
VicTsing Ultra Silent High Out Energy Efficient Aquarium Air Pump Fish Tank Oxygen AirPump With 2 Air stone/2M Silicone Tube • Amazon Business $12.99 4 $51.96
TotalPond 1/2 in. Vinyl Tubing • Amazon Business $15.50 3 $46.50
3/4'' UNISEAL Flexible Tank Adapter (Bulkhead) - 5 Pack • Amazon Business $18.98 1 $18.98
Two Little Fishies ATL5445W Ball Valve for Regulating Water Flow, 1/2-Inch • Amazon Business $3.99 4 $15.96

Materials cost


Vendor shipping charges


State sales tax


3rd party payment processing fee


Fulfillment labor & materials


Total project cost


Suggested donation to help DonorsChoose reach more classrooms


Total project goal


How we calculate what's needed

Total project goal


4 Donors


Donations toward project cost


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Project Activity

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