The International SeaKeepers Society and partners invite Georgia middle and high school educators to apply for the June 2023 Teacher Workshop that includes a two-day, three-night professional development opportunity in Miami, Florida. Through hands-on field experiences and research, teachers will use Biscayne Bay as a case study to explore anthropogenic impacts on different ecosystems found along coastal communities. Teachers will receive a Certificate of Completion for this professional development activity.
We invite Georgia middle and high school educators to apply to join the June 2023 Teacher Workshop with SeaKeepers and Georgia Aquarium by clicking the button below and filling out the form on the website.
Georgia Aquarium & International SeaKeepers Society
2nd Annual Teacher Workshop in Miami, FL
June 22nd – 25th, 2023
Activity 1: Ecological Impacts of Urban Cities
Biscayne Bay is the crown jewel of Miami, however, the Bay’s proximity to such a large and ever-growing city in a highly populated state has left lasting impacts on its ecosystems. Through a set of on-the-water activities, teachers will learn the history of Biscayne Bay, the ecosystems that it encompasses, and the threats it currently faces. Teachers will learn about the impacts of pollution on this body of water, take measurements of water quality, and meet some of the habitants of the Bay. These activities will provide hands-on experiences to illustrate the ecological impact of humans on coastlines, which will be later applied to more local examples.
Activity 2: Impacts of Plastic Pollution on Ecosystems
Plastic pollution has become a large issue across the world, from busy urban areas to even the most remote islands. To learn more about the impact of such debris on wildlife, teachers will visit a small, remote island known to be a nesting area for many local birds, and collect data to determine the most common types of marine debris and plastic on the island. Teachers will discuss sources of the most common items, and propose solutions for reducing plastic on the individual scale as well as community scale.
Activity 3: Biology & Ecology of Marine Organisms
Miami is home to many different types of marine life. After exploring Biscayne Bay and becoming familiar with many of the species that reside in this area, teachers will head into the coastal waters of the Atlantic to explore reef ecosystems and their residents. Through a snorkeling tour, teachers will learn about the different adaptations fish use to thrive in different environments and explore the role of coral reefs as ecosystem engineers.
Activity 4: Bringing it Home
The Southeastern US has incredible biodiversity, especially when it comes to freshwater animals. In this concluding workshop, teachers will examine the ecology of the Chattahoochee Metro-Atlanta region, including invasive species and their impacts to the local habitats. Teachers will work together to analyze data points on the Chattahoochee’s current conditions and correlate impacts to the region’s ecology.
Throughout the experience, teachers will learn about the International SeaKeepers Society, Georgia Aquarium’s programming for teachers, and learn about conservation research efforts by local and global scientists.
DAY 1 – Thursday, June 22nd:
Afternoon: teachers arrive & are transported to accommodations
4:30PM: Welcome, Introduction to SeaKeepers & Georgia Aquarium, Ice Breaker Activity
6:00PM: Guest Speaker – Introduction to Biscayne Bay
7:30PM: Dinner at local restaurant, speaker invited
DAY 2 – Friday, June 23rd
7:30AM: Breakfast & review day’s activities
10:00AM: Activity 1: Introduction to Biscayne Bay, local pollution, and water quality.
12:00 – 12:30PM: Transport to Pelican Island
12:30 – 1:00PM: Lunch on the Island
1:00 – 3:00PM: Activity 2: Impacts of Plastic Pollution on Ecosystems
5:00 – 6:00PM: Fish ID & Safety
DAY 3 – Saturday, June 24th
7:30AM: Breakfast & review day’s activities
10:00 – 1:00PM: Activity 3: Biology & Ecology of Marine Organisms
2:30 – 5:00PM: Activity 4: Bringing it Home
6:00PM: Workshop feedback, experience sharing, conclusions
DAY 4 – Sunday, June 25th
Early Morning Breakfast & farewells
Teachers transported to airport
SEC3. Obtain, evaluate, and communicate information to construct explanations of community interactions.
e. Develop a model to explain ecological succession in terms of changes in communities over time and the impact of disturbance on community composition.
SEC4. Obtain, evaluate, and communicate information about biogeochemical cycles and how the flow of energy influences ecosystems.
d. Construct an argument based on evidence to explain the relationship between net primary productivity and biodiversity.
SEC5. Obtain, evaluate, and communicate information on the impact of natural and anthropogenic activities on ecological systems.
d. Obtain, evaluate, and communicate mitigation strategies to reduce the impacts of non-sustainable activities on Georgia ecosystems.
The application deadline is May 26, 2023.
Toni Lohroff, M.S.
International SeaKeepers Society
Bailey Dawson, Jr., Ed.S.