link to AFSC home page

link to AFSC home page link to NMFS home page link to NOAA home page

Items:  AFSC Scientists Reach out to the Community Through Education, Celebration, and Public Awareness

AFSC Quarterly
Research Reports
Apr-May-June 2010
ABL Reports
FMA Reports
NMML Reports
RACE Reports
REFM Reports
All Reports (.pdf)
Quarterly Index
Quarterly Home

NMML Scientists Participate in St. Paul School's Bering Sea Days

event activity
event activity
Activities at the St. Paul School's Bering Sea Days included "How big is an orca?" (top) and a hands-on opportunity for students to determine the paternity/maternity of northern fur seal pups (bottom).  Photos by Harriet Huber.

Harriet Huber and Bobette Dickerson of the AFSC's National Marine Mammal Laboratory (NMML) and Juan Leon Guerrero of the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) Alaska Regional Office traveled to St. Paul Island, Alaska, for St. Paul School's Bering Sea Days event, 12-16 April 2010.

This is the third year of Bering Sea Days, a program developed by the Aleut Community of St. Paul Island–Tribal Government and St. Paul School science, math, and technology teachers.

The event brings scientists to the Pribilof Islands to give students an opportunity to learn about marine science and marine science careers and to give scientists a chance to interact with K-12 students and test their abilities to present complex concepts simply.

Harriet presented the hands-on activities "How big is an orca?" and "Make your own whale calls" from the AFSC curriculum "Saving Springer: how NOAA brought an orphan orca home" to students in grades pre-K through 8. She also gave a presentation on inspiring conservation and stewardship ethics in schoolchildren to St. Paul Island teachers and other interested adults from the community.

Bobette used toy seals and faked genotypes in a matching game designed to determine paternity/maternity in northern fur seals to teach students about the use of genetics in investigations of life history and mating strategies. Juan also employed toy seals in his presentation on mark-recapture techniques, showing students in grades 5-12 how shearing is used on the island to estimate pup production.

All of the activities presented by the NOAA scientists were well received, and both the paternity/maternity game and the mark-recapture exercises are being reworked as part of the northern fur seal curriculum currently being developed by AFSC personnel.

All in all, it was a positive environment for NOAA scientists to interact with schoolchildren. We encourage other NOAA scientists to participate in this event in the future.

By Bobette Dickerson

next >>>

            Home | FOIA | Privacy | | Accessibility      doc logo