Wow people... Since when did ignorance need to bring out such an angry response? The teacher obviously didn't care much for the efficiency of the project, they probably wanted to do something fun and different. Of course a better option would be to use invertebrates or such but they obviously didn't place much value in the life of the fish. This does not make a person a heartless monster. We all eat fish now and then dont we? I do believe it was wrong but we CAN act like civilized human beings and try to have an educated conversation. If they don't want to listen then just be content in knowing you tried. I'm sick of people here shoving their self righteousness in everyone else's face.
The main reason it upsets me is just how the teacher handled it and treated the kids--She would give the kid an F if their animal failed, scolding them that they let it die during her project..and then at the end of the week, offered to flush any of the leftover living animals! O_o Any kid that was absent the last day of class had their animal flushed for them(Apparently in some of the other class periods there were a few more scattered survivals) Just strange. Plus she mocked Ryan for being concerned about the betta, saying how he could just get 100 more just like him, and it's not like 2 dollars is all that much. Yeesh, whatever lady.
Yeah, that's what I have a problem with. I learned to love and respect life, all kinds of life, because of cool science classes that made animals and ecosystems fascinating. I had teachers dedicated to making things work.
This "experiment" was ill conceived, illogical from a biology standpoint, and set a standard for the grades the kids couldn't live up to. That's not good teaching. I don't know how the rest of the class is, as far as her curriculum goes, but this experiment was not well planned or executed, and I would have called her on it.
The blatant disregard for life sets a very bad example for children, like life doesn't matter if it's cheaper than five bucks. If you don't value what you're teaching about, I can pretty much guarantee you're not going to get your message across.
It would be one thing if this was just an experiment she wanted to try that she just didn't research well, but from my admitted limited view of the situation, I think there's something deeper amiss here. I'm only expressing these opinions to support the parent and child who it seems are feeling the same way.
My rule for the internet, "would I say it to your face?" Yes, in this case, I would. So I'll stand on that opinion. That was a bad experiment and not a good teaching tool.
There's a reason most science fairs don't let the kids experiment on living things. It's a good rule.
This was supposed to be a about finrot and halfway through it got derailed into the start of a flamewar against a teacher. Classy. When it comes to school you have three options, shut up and do your work, petition, or boycotting class. I would know, ive done it all.
Or you could do something even far more terrible and get a hold of peta and tell them about the projects at school. Then again, I tend to go way overboard with most anything I do. Most of you really wouldnt do anything in person, most of you just sit there getting mad without actually doing anything, and to those people, grow up. To those who actually will do something, good job.
There's not much you can do as a student, but there's a whole lot you can do as a parent.
If it were me, as a parent, I'd start with a letter drafted to the teacher, something along the lines of,
I have concerns about the recent experiment you conducted with your students on (fill in the date). I don't feel this experiment was an effective teaching demonstration of ecosystems or how the nitrogen cycle functions. Given the constraints of the assignment, creating a working nitrogen cycle was impossible for the students.
In a pond-like environment, the nitrogen cycle depends on a specific culture of different bacteria to break down ammonia created through decomposition and waste, and convert it to nitrates consumed by plants.
This cycle takes weeks to develop and maintain under careful conditions and requires at least three gallons of water to create a balanced system.
Given the constraints of the experiment, there was no effective way the students could have created or maintained this system. Therefore, the goal of creating a system capable or sustaining the life of any higher order animal is suspect, and basing the grade on that success unfair to all the students.
Beyond that, I have concerns about what the disregard for the health and well being of those animals teaches our children. I hope that we as parents and educators would strive for a curriculum that teaches respect for living things as well as good science.
I hope in the future you will abandon such projects in your curriculum, or modify the experiment to take into consideration the complexity of creating a living aqueous habitat. I also hope that as a teacher you consider the alternate messages you are teaching our children about compassion and respect for living things.
If that makes her come after you, you can draft another one to the pricipal and send it to him. Same content, more "Dismay at the quality of scientific education."