HOLLAND — A group of local third-grade students had an opportunity to present findings of a research project to a panel at Hope College this week.
Students in Erica Slenk’s third-grade class at Holland Christian’s Forest School recently conducted a research project around recreational fishing.
They presented their data Tuesday, Nov. 23, in the Schaap Auditorium at the Jim and Martie Bultman Student Center for a panel of two Hope faculty members, two Hope students and family members of the students in the class.
The students led the project, all the way from choosing the subject to making predictions and drawing conclusions.
“They decided everything. It’s very student-led, which is awesome,” Slenk said. “It was about a two month project for us. We’ve been going out, collecting data, talking about how to research. It’s been a long project, but the kids have loved it and really impressed us the whole way.”
The teacher added that having the chance to present at a college for a panel of college professors and students meant a lot to the class.
“To present at a college, it’s a big deal. It’s really huge for them,,” she said. “They were so excited, a little nervous, but they really rocked it. I’m really proud of them. They think it’s really cool to be doing something that college kids do. Research is not something that they had really heard of before this year.”
During the presentation, students described how they chose their baits, how to put together fishing poles and tie hooks, the locations they fished at, how many fish were caught and more.
The project involved testing two kinds of baits, hot dogs and corn, to see what fish they attracted. Fishing took place in seven spots around the area with a total of 72 fish being caught.
Most of the fish, 51 of them, were caught using hot dogs, while the other 21 were caught with corn. Forty-five of the fish were blue gills, by far the most common of the students' catches.
Students reported having the most fishing success at ponds at the Outdoor Discovery Center. Tim Malefyt from the Outdoor Discovery Center has been working with the class throughout the project and helped set up the presentation at Hope College.
This year’s third-grade students at Forest School were the first class of students at the school, beginning as kindergartners in August 2018. The school has continued to grow with them and now offers four grade levels, K-3.
Principal Miska Rynsburger said curricular and facility design is currently in place through fifth grade for Forest School. She added that the school will have to have discussions to decide what Forest School looks like as the students move toward middle school in a couple years.
This article originally appeared on The Holland Sentinel: Forest School third-graders present research findings at Hope College
Source : https://news.yahoo.com/forest-school-third-graders-present-170032711.html1072