My students need aquariums, aquaponic gardens, and lamps so that we can learn about aquaponics as part of our sustainable agriculture unit.
My students come from a wide variety of cultural backgrounds, but they all share the belief that the best way to learn is by doing. They come from a wide variety of cultural and economic backgrounds. My school is located in California's Central Valley. We have a unique sense of community and most of my students are involved in multiple extra-curricular activities.
My AP Environmental Science students are motivated to find creative ways to grow healthy food while conserving space and water.
The fact that California is currently in a severe drought hits really close to home here in the Central Valley, hurting families, farmers, and wildlife. The general population is also increasing in the region, meaning there is less space to grow food as many farms and orchards are converted to housing.
This year we are focusing on stewardship, sustainable agriculture and water conservation. What I want my students to take away from this experience is that we can always do better.
With California experiencing one of its worst droughts in history, and our community being an agricultural community, water conservation is at the forefront of my students' minds.
Many families in this area are experiencing some sort of food insecurity. Through this project, my students will learn to grow healthy foods in an alternative setting. They will also learn about eutrophication as a result of nutrient accumulation from overuse of fertilizers and from feed-lot runoff. These aquaponic gardens, together with vertical planters that we already have on site, will allow my students to experience stewardship first hand, as we make use of our small gardening space in to grow food to share with the families in our community.
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