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Ohio Sea Grant College Program
and Stone Laboratory

Ohio Sea Grant and Stone Laboratory

Exotic Species Day Camp: A Regional Teacher Training Initiative

Project Number: E/NIS-001, Completion Report

Start Date: 9/1/1997

Completion Date: 8/31/1999

Revision Date: 10/22/2002

Principal Investigator(s)1.Rosanne W. Fortner, COSEE Great Lakes*
Co-Principal Investigator(s)2.Robin G. Goettel, IL/IN Sea Grant*
Associate Investigator(s)3.Patrice Charlebois, IL/IN Sea Grant*
This shows the current affiliation and may not match affiliation at time of participation. *

Funding Record

Source: Ohio Sea Grant College Program
Source FundState MatchPass Through
Total$ 9,122.00$ 4,558.00$ 0.00


To increase the level of knowledge of ANS by teachers and educators throughout the Great Lakes region.
To introduce and provide Sea Grant-developed aquatic nonindigenous species education materials to teachers and educators at inservice training sessions (hosted at regional aquaria and environmental education centers) that enables them to integrate ANS programming into K-12 classroom and outdoor education programming.
To develop curriculum modules by training session participants that incorporate asspects of Sea Grant-developed ANS education materials for K-12 education programming.
A curriculum module will be developed by participating teachers incorporating each of the Great Lakes Sea Grant Network products offered as part of the Exotics Day Camp training session.
Sea Grant programs will have a measure of the effectiveness of their products as teaching tools in the classroom and outdoor education settings.


A multi-state program in the Great Lakes region introduced nearly 100 teachers to aquatic nuisance species through workshops held at nonformal institutions. The "Day Camp" experience included field studies, classroom activities, computer applications and instruction in curriculum development. Teachers received a stipend for completion of classroom activities following the Day Camps.


The concept of ANS is an important curriculum topic for K-12 classrooms because it serves as a useful point of exploration for understanding other human mitigated impacts (i.e., water pollution, over-fishing, biodiversity, habitat loss) on aquatic ecosystems.

Frequently, teachers request resources to educate their students about ANS; however, few resources have been developed or are available. In order to meet this need, teacher training, in partnership with aquaria and environmental learning centers, will serve to enhance availability of new educational resources and allow them to develop and use teaching modules based on their teaching needs. This initiative will benefit youth, our future environmental stewards, teach them about the threats that ANS pose--all aimed at changing behavior to help prevent the spread of ANS.


  1. Partnering with COSI Toledo, Ohio Sea Grant Education facilitated development of and coordinated a one-day training session for teachers and other educators.
  2. Thirty teachers and other educators were introduced to ANS educational materials and allowed to use many of the hands-on materials and tools which brought them up-to-date concerning the existing resources that are now available.
  3. COSI Toledo developed a display about ANS to serve as a focal point for visual learning and to provide a basis for each sessions' educational activities.
  4. Participants developed a curriculum module based on the education materials they used at the sessions, incorporating disciplines such as science, math, social studies, language, arts, etc., using demonstrated and effective teaching methods.
  5. Curriculum modules were pilot tested by an independent set of teachers, revised by participants in collaboration with the Great Lakes Network of Sea Grant Educators, who produced and now market them to educators throughout the Great Lakes region.

Benefits & Accomplishments

  1. Through a partnership with five educational institutions throughout the region, this training will establish a regional network of classroom and informal educators who are poised to use these materials to teach hundreds of educators in their local shcools and environmental education centers. This information will ultimately reach tens of thousands of students.
  2. A hands-on curriculum module using Sea Grant education resources will be developed as a joint effort of participating educators and Sea Grant specialists.
  3. Potential education gaps that can be filled by new Sea Grant aquatic exotic species programming and relevant products will be identified.
  4. Both Sea Grant and educational host site partners will gain from tremendous visibility created by this cooperative venture.
  5. This collaborative project will strenghten relationships among Sea Grant programs, university educators, and partnering host site educators.
  6. The training initiative will permit the effective use of resources among partners with parallel missions and interests for promoting environmental education.
  7. Aquaria and associated displays contributed by partnering educational institutions will serve not only to promote and broaden the level of awareness and education among teachers participating in this initiative, but will also be on display for future environmental education programming.

Publications & Media

Peer-reviewed reprints
Peer-reviewed reprints2001, ESCAPE Compendium of Classroom Activities
Great Lakes Education Network. IL-IN Sea Grant Publications: Purdue University. 40 activities in folder.
Conference, symposia, or workshop proceedings, and summaries
Conference, symposia, or workshop proceedings, and summariesGoettel, R., Domske, H., & Fortner, R. 2000, Activities for teaching about exotic aquatics
NMEA Annual Conference.