The 3rd graders chose to study the health of the coral reefs for their Genius Hour project this year. As part of their research, they spoke to Erik Vance, a reporter who has written stories about the impact of mankind on the animals who live in the ocean. We connected with Erik through the Pulitzer Center, one of the many resources on the Skype in the Classroom site. (The Pulitzer Center, by the way, has a wonderful educational outreach program that includes a fabulous Lesson Builder tool.)
From Mr. Vance the students learned about some practical ways that we can help to keep the oceans healthy. He taught them about “sustainable fishing,” and that one easy way we can promote this is to ask waiters for sustainable fish in restaurants. Mr. Vance also told the students about a creative project an artist has done in Cancun – placing sculptures underwater. The sculptures attract sea creatures who add to his artistic masterpieces, enticing tourists to swim in this area rather than in regions where amateur divers might cause damage to fragile ecosystems.
We really appreciate Mr. Vance’s time and expertise! Thanks to him and Fareed Mostoufi at the Pulitzer Center for making our Skype visit possible!